Calgary Bank Employee Charged With Identity Theft
7 April 2015
According to a recent case that has just come to light, identity theft can originate in the last place you would expect — inside the bank itself. A former employee of a bank call centre in Calgary has been charged with identity theft after she used customers’ personal information to make online purchases totaling upwards of $11,000.
Between June 2012 and November 2013, 37-year-old Georgina Rankine was employed at a call centre at a bank in southwest Calgary. She was responsible for answering customers’ questions about their credit cards and accounts, which allowed her to collect a large amount of detailed personal information. According to Calgary police, Rankine used this information to go on online shopping sprees, spending a total of more than $11,000 of the customers’ money.
Staff Sgt. Kristie Verheul of the Calgary Police’s economic crimes unit told the Calgary Herald that Rankine’s actions began to raise suspicions when she began applying for accounts in the victims’ names.
“She used some of the information to get a phone account and she would buy pay-as-you-go minutes on phones and whatnot. A lot of the companies were out of the States,” said Verheul.
Finally, Rankine “got a little sloppy”, in Verheul’s words, and called the same call centre she worked at, asking for a change of address and contact number on a customer’s account. The call centre worker she spoke to flagged the conversation for internal investigation, which ended in Rankine being fired. Now, she has been charged with theft of identification, fraudulent credit card data use, identification fraud and four counts of fraud under $5,000. Investigators believe that about 20 bank customers had been victimized by Rankine’s actions.
Identity theft and credit fraud can happen when and where you least expect them. Signing up for a credit monitoring service can help you get some peace of mind by alerting you to certain types of activities on your accounts.