Posts tagged personally identifiable information

    Eight Individuals Charged in Alleged $30 Million Unemployment Benefits Scheme

    December 1, 2022 // According to court documents, Tyshion Nautese Hicks, 30, of Vienna, Georgia; Shatara Hubbard, 34, of Warner Robins, Georgia; Torella Wynn, 30, of Cordele, Georgia; Macovian Doston, 29, of Vienna; Kenya Whitehead, 35, of Cordele; A’Darrion Alexander, 27, of Warner Robins; Membrish Brown, 27, of Vienna; and Edith Nate Hicks, 45, of Atlanta, Georgia and others allegedly caused more than 5,000 fraudulent unemployment insurance (UI) claims to be filed with the Georgia Department of Labor (GaDOL), resulting in at least $30 million in stolen benefits meant to assist unemployed individuals during the COVID-19 pandemic. To execute the scheme, the defendants and others allegedly created fictitious employers and fabricated lists of purported employees using stolen personally identifiable information (PII) from thousands of identity theft victims and filed fraudulent unemployment insurance claims on the GaDOL website. The defendants allegedly stole PII from a variety of sources, including by paying defendant Edith Nate Hicks, an employee of an Atlanta-area health care and hospital network, to unlawfully obtain patients’ PII from the hospital’s databases. The defendants also allegedly caused the stolen UI funds to be disbursed via prepaid debit cards mailed to addresses of their choice, many of which were in and around Cordele and Vienna.