Federal Employees' IDs Used To Tap CU

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The FDIC was warning its employees last week of a security breach that allowed thieves to use employees' identities to take out tens of thousands of dollars of unsecured loans at NIH FCU, in nearby Rockville, Md.

In a letter sent to more than 6,000 employees at the federal banking regulator, the FDIC said "According to the FBI and the FDIC's Office of Inspector General, your name, date of birth, salary, Social Security number, and length of service information has been obtained without authorization by a person or persons outside the FDIC.

"In a small number of cases, this information is known to have been used to obtain fraudulent loans from a credit union."

The information was used by an employee of NIH FCU to open accounts at the CU to take out 28 unsecured loans, averaging between $10,000 and $18,000. Lindsay Alexander, president of the $375-million credit union, confirmed incidents of identity theft but said she couldn't comment further because of an ongoing investigation by the FBI.

The phony loans were uncovered when one of the victimized FDIC employees contacted the credit union in March. The loans were also suspicious because they were made to people outside the CU's field of membership, which serves employees of the National Institutes of Health, George Washington University and other select groups. The employee responsible for the loans is no longer working for the CU and is part of the FBI investigation.

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