The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) filed a lawsuit in 2013 against numerous entities and individuals for collecting sensitive consumer information from payday loan applications and selling that information to “scammers” who made unauthorized withdrawals from the consumers’ bank accounts. According to the complaint in FTC’s lawsuit, the scheme swindled nearly $7.1 million from the accounts of more than 500,000 consumers. Entities bought consumer payday loan applications, which included Social Security and bank account numbers, from data brokers and payday loan websites, and then used the information to defraud consumers.
The data brokers who sold the information, such as Sitesearch Corp., (also known as LeapLab) Gen X Marketing Group LLC and Sequoia One LLC, and the scammers who bought the information, such as Financial Solutions and its subsidiaries, were included as Defendants in the lawsuit. The action was filed in the Federal District Court for the District of Nevada.
On Feb. 23, 2016, the District Court entered a final judgment that includes a $43,083,720 judgment against Ideal Financial Solutions and its subsidiaries, Steven Sunyich, Christopher Sunyich, Michael Sunyich, and Melissa Sunyich Gardner, and a $36,575,542 judgment against Jared Mosher. The court also banned the individual ringleaders of the scheme from marketing, selling and handling any credit-related products or services.
Previously, the FTC entered into settlements with two operators, Kent Brown and Shawn Sunyich, that banned them from placing unauthorized charges on consumer financial accounts and collecting and disclosing consumer information without consent. The orders also imposed a suspended $25 million judgment against each individual.
If you need more information on this subject, contact Leslie Pescia, a lawyer in our firm’s Consumer Fraud and Commercial Litigation Section, at 800-898-2034 or by email at Leslie.Pescia@beasleyallen.com.
Source: Federal Trade Commission
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