Guiding your life’s biggest financial moments

Capps stole the passwords of people who worked for him in order to issue checks from dormant accounts to be transferred to the Pennsylvania State Treasury, according to a report from the Philadelphia Investigator. Instead, he sent the checks to his brother-in-law and others not named in the lawsuit. Tobin and Capps reportedly tried to hide all traces of these issued checks, before using the money to buy several real estate properties – which they have since had to abandon.

“This was an isolated incident where a former employee used his professional responsibilities to defraud Vanguard,” Vanguard spokeswoman Carolyn Wegemann said in an interview. “All affected customers received the money to which they were entitled.”

She added that Vanguard has since added additional guarantees to protect customers and their assets.

How to protect yourself

Of course, consumers should always try to proactively protect themselves: an important way to do this is to verify that no funds are withdrawn from accounts without proper authorization, says Sally Greenburg, Executive Director of National Consumers. League. “It’s a lot to ask when we all have very busy lives, but yes, you should check your statements.”

You should monitor the accounts of sick and deceased relatives or close friends: family members should have access to passwords and financial information of elderly relatives who do not have the capacity to be vigilant on their own, said Greenburg.

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