|Jim Stickley: Dumpster diver, crime fighter
Caught only twice
These ploys may sound easy to spot, but Stickley says that his team
has only been caught twice. For the rare occasions when they do
get caught, Stickley and his cohorts carry "get out of jail free"
documentation proving they were hired for the job, along with contact
information for the insiders on the bank's end. Some of them must
be available when the job occurs, he explains. "We don't feel like
getting shot. It's not fun."
Of course, tellers aren't privy to the scams ahead
of time, except in the case of Stickley's vishing scam, which illustrates
the importance of shredding documents that contain customers' information.
Stickley and his Dumpster-diving team retrieve phone numbers and
e-mail addresses of customers written on sticky notes and various
papers and then call or e-mail on behalf of the bank with the message
that a problem occurred while working on the customer's account.
An 800 number is provided, along with a reference ID number. When
someone calls, the call routes to Stickley's cell phone. Once customers
supply their name and reference ID number, they must verify their
Social Security numbers and their account information.
While every heist comes with excitement, Stickley's
ultimate goal boils down to beefing up bank security -- at the employee
level. With turnover high at financial institutions, Stickley thinks
that employees remain the weakest link. They know what to do if
a gun gets pointed at them, but they lack training for dealing with
smooth-talking inspectors bumping around behind the counter. They
might, for instance, monitor one of Stickley's team members, but
won't watch over everyone if multiple members get sent in for the
job. "If one employee is making the mistake, chances are others
Security breaches hinge more on human error, he points
out. "You could spend $5,000 on a network, but if I can walk in
and take it over, it's worthless."
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