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Anonymous Takes Aim At Bank of America

Anonymous Takes Aim At Bank of America

Anonymous, the hacker group loosely affiliated with WikiLeaks has posted a series of emails, purportedly from a former Bank of America employee which show a pattern and practice of corruption and fraud at the nation’s largest bank.

The emails are on the site and were announced on Twitter with the accompanying #BlackMonday hashtag.

In the emails released, an emailer who identifies himself as a former Bank of America employee dishes on his former employer.  And while the emails have not been independently verified per se, Bank of America believes them to be true, dismissing the allegations as clerical and administrative errors and not fraud.

Among the practices uncovered includes “forced-place insurance” where a mortgage borrower who does not maintain an insurance policy on their home has a policy “placed” for them by their insurer.  In the case of Bank of America, they own the insurance company, Balboa Insurance.  Balboa is the market leader in forced-place insurance.  Bank of America used Balboa as the insurer of choice for its forced-placed practice, leading to highly inflated premiums and inadequate policies for homeowners, all the while failing to notify borrowers of the practice.

Anonymous and WikiLeaks have promised for months now to disclose a trove of documents against Bank of America and today’s leak looks like the first shot fired.  And while the allegations and practices disclosed are offensive and, if proven true, do rise to the level of fraud via omission, at this point is anyone really surprised?  The banking industry has proven to be absolutely unable to avoid fraud absent an intense regulatory scheme in place to force daylight on its practices.

The problem is not requiring borrowers to carry insurance on their homes–indeed, many would argue that such a practice is simply sound practice in protecting the investment made by the lending institutions.  The problem is forcing borrowers into an insurance relationship with a subsidiary of the lending institution without disclosure and with added expense to the borrower.  It creates a conflict of interest for Bank of America and allows them to double-dip in fee recovery.

Given that most of the media has grown tired of covering the banking scandals that seem to go on without end it is unlikely this story will get the attention it deserves, let alone place it in the larger context of a culture of deception that has come to define the financial services industries.


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photo courtesy of moneyblognewz via Flickr

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8:59AM PDT on Aug 17, 2012

anonymous rocks

10:24AM PDT on Oct 1, 2011

Not sure how I feel about this subject for various reasons.......I think I'll check out the website mentioned on bank of america and read more.

3:26PM PDT on Mar 20, 2011

here is a web site that spells out how the budge is working for the GOP.. simple graph... wonderfully put and I have emailed it to every one of my state legislators and state congressmen... and all my friends and family and hope you do too.. copy and paste

11:24PM PDT on Mar 19, 2011

The wealthy elites are systematically destroying the working middle class.

Big money buys legislators and judges. Unions, public broadcasting, and the courts are the only tools that the masses have to defend themselves in this brutal class war.

For example "tort reform" is not about doctor malpractice insurance. Tort reform is the weapon used by corporations to prevent an ordinary person from getting justice in a court of law.

3:54PM PDT on Mar 19, 2011

You take the WIKILEADS AWAKENING pill, the story ends. You wake up in your bed and you believe whatever you want to believe.

You take the "US CONTROLED MEDIA" pill, you stay in wonderland.

And, I show you how deep the rabbit hole goes.

6:18PM PDT on Mar 18, 2011

If enough customers close their accounts, the bank will take notice. It is called walking power. We need to demand from our elected officials that a total overhaul of banking practices will take place. As long as the government looks the other way nothing will ever change. Meanwhile start taking your money/business to Credit Unions.

9:26AM PDT on Mar 16, 2011

thank you Anonymous! Notice this isn't in the mainstream news.. they are considered domestic terrorists by the real domestic terrorist organization Fox and company

7:25AM PDT on Mar 16, 2011

Anonymous and Wikileaks do great public service and I appreciate them.

4:55AM PDT on Mar 16, 2011

On the one hand I'm waiting for more dirt on the banking industry from Wikileaks or Anonymous. On the other, I dread the initial pretense of outrage in the media followed by actually outrageous inaction.

8:39PM PDT on Mar 15, 2011

Thank goodness there are people out there willing to let the public know what is happening. Basically, all banks are bad, and only look out for themselves. We have to make them accountable. Thanks for the info.

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