SCAM ALERT: Thieves targeting unlocked cars to steal personal and financial information
Police say to always lock up your belongings no matter where you are
Scammers are taking their nefarious schemes offline, as they are now targeting unlocked vehicles in an effort to steal personal and financial information that will allow them to access people’s accounts and withdraw funds. According to the Brown County Sheriff’s Office, this type of fraud is believed to be related to the “Felony Lane Gang” (FLG) style of bank fraud and identity theft.
WHAT IS THE FELONY LANE GANG AND HOW CAN YOU KEEP YOUR IDENTITY AND FINANCES SAFE?
According to the FBI, the Felony Lane Gang is “a group of organized burglary and identity theft rings originating in South Florida and operating in multiple jurisdictions throughout the U.S. These decentralized crews often operate independently, with a loose hierarchy mimicking the method of operations outlined below.”
The group utilizes rental vehicles with heavily tinted windows to conduct surveillance in parking lots and steal identification documents, credit cards, and checkbooks from unattended vehicles. The majority of these burglaries occur at gyms, fitness centers, daycare facilities, and recreation areas where women would be more likely to leave their purses in their vehicles. FLG members then utilize the stolen checks and IDs to withdraw large sums of money at multiple banks before the victims have the opportunity to close their accounts.
Since the victims are almost always female, FLG subjects have been known to recruit women, often prostitutes and drug users, from outside of the group to impersonate the victims. These women are known to successfully utilize disguises, such as wigs. The subjects will strategically choose the farthest window from the teller in bank drive-thru lanes to impersonate the customer while using a stolen ID. This drive-thru lane is commonly known as the “felony lane,” thus coining the name of this criminal enterprise.”
Tips to keep your identity and finances safe:
- Always lock up your belongings, no matter where you are
- Always keep any form of ID or financial information hidden from view when out in public
We’re here to help, so please don’t hesitate to get in touch with our friendly Fox team at 920-993-9000 or stop by any of our Fox locations throughout the Appleton, Oshkosh, Green Bay, and Manitowoc areas.
Fox Communities Credit Union is a full-service, not-for-profit financial institution serving members throughout Eastern Wisconsin, including Appleton, Green Bay, Oshkosh, Manitowoc, and Milwaukee.