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Chapter 5. CRIMINAL IDENTITY THEFT,TAXES... > Identity Theft and Investments

Identity Theft and Investments

Frank Gruttadauria was a successful investment broker who handled millions of dollars on behalf of his wealthy clients. He was also an identity thief who was convicted in 2002 of securities fraud, wire fraud, bank fraud, and identity theft that made his clients much less wealthy. His easy access to not only his clients' personal information but also their actual accounts made his crimes both easier to accomplish and more frightening to people who already feel quite vulnerable. The Ohio-based Gruttadauria stole $125 million dollars from his client's accounts, shifting money from one client's account to another and all the time keeping plenty for himself.

Tip

Read your monthly brokerage account statements carefully. Look for anything out of the ordinary. Make sure your broker explains anything to you that you do not understand. Get a second opinion. A certified financial planner may be able to better review your statement for you and perhaps, as an added bonus, even make suggestions that may include tax advice pertaining to your investments with expertise that your broker may not necessarily possess.

Also, ask the branch manager of the investment company with which you do business about its policies for reviewing and overseeing the actions of their individual brokers. This should be done on aregular basis.



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