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You may have lost money in your investment portfolio,
due to mismanagement and not even know it.

Data breaches could support stock manipulation scheme

With data breaches becoming an ongoing problem for large scale retailers, it is not surprising that businesses in the financial industry are being targeted by cyber hackers. Essentially, customer information lists, and the ability to purge specific information from them, are valuable on the black market.

With that, a recent report highlighted several indictments against three men accused of running a burgeoning computer hacking and fraud scheme that involved stealing customer’s personal information from several financial services companies, including TD Ameritrade, JP Morgan Chase, and E-Trade. Federal prosecutors believe that the scheme dates back to 2007 and more than 100 million customers could have been compromised. 

What’s worse, this information was used to sell information about manipulated stock prices to thousands of unwitting customers, many of whom were contacted because their information was stolen from aforementioned financial services companies. This resulted in millions of illegal profits for those running the schemes when the inflated stocks were dumped. Federal prosecutors described these actions as “securities fraud on steroids.” As such, the trio accused orchestrating the scheme stand to be convicted of securities and wire fraud, identity theft and conspiring to commit money laundering.

It remains to be seen whether the men will accept plea deals and whether they will be ordered to pay restitution to their victims affected in these schemes. It is also unclear just how many customers had their information stolen or lost money due to stock manipulation. Nevertheless, investors that have lost money in these situations should contact an experienced securities fraud attorney to understand their rights and options. 

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