Breaking News in the Industry: January 15, 2019

theft by employees, Stealing from Cash Register, employee theft articles, employees, theft consequences

Accused LP manager flees state then turns herself in to police

A Washington, Missouri, Walmart employee who is charged with stealing more than $25,000 from the store and leaving the state turned herself in, police said. Karen F. Wahl. 62, contacted Washington police from Mississippi after she turned herself in to local police. A loss prevention manager at the Washington Walmart, Wahl is accused of stealing a duffel bag from the store and taking more $25,000 in cash was on the lam, Washington police said. She was charged Thursday in Franklin County Associate Circuit Court with Class C felony stealing of over $25,000.

According to Washington police Detective Michael Wissbaum, on Monday, January 7, Wahl allegedly is shown on video stealing a duffel bag which she filled with cash. “She clocked out and then never came back,” he said. The probable cause statement filed in the Franklin County Prosecutor’s Office states Wahl was the manager in charge of asset protection and had access to the room where Walmart keeps its cash and conducts financial accounting. Wahl also was tasked with making bank deposits.   [Source: emissourian.com]

Employee’s fraud refund scheme busted

A Memphis, Tennessee, woman is facing charges for theft after police say she stole nearly $2,400 from her employer, Lowe’s, by fraudulently returning merchandise. An asset protection manager with a watchful eye caught on to the scam while reviewing surveillance footage. According to a police report, surveillance cameras caught Elizabeth Turner making returns without customers present and tossing the receipts. The asset protection manager noted a pattern and notified a manager who confronted Turner. The report says Turner confessed to the scheme. The asset protection manager told police Turner took $2,340.98 between November and December.   [Source: WMC5 Action News]

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What happens when the police get hacked?

When they are on the receiving end of a ransomware attack, one of the first things the victims can do is call the police… but what happens when the cops themselves falls victim to ransomware? One law enforcement agency that found itself hit by a ransomware attack was the Lauderdale County Sheriff’s Department in Meridian, Mississippi on 28 May 2018.

“Our IT manager contacted me — and at first I thought he was joking when he said we’ve got a major problem,” says chief deputy Ward Calhoun of Lauderdale County Sheriff’s Department. “You hear about these kind of things happening where networks are compromised but it’s always the idea that it’ll happen to somebody else, it won’t happen to us. But he told me you need to come to my office, this is serious, we have a problem. We got together and he explained to me we’re the victims of a ransomware attack.”

The department had fallen victim to a variant of Dharma ransomware and most of its systems taken down by the attack. “It was an opportunistic attack. We had a weak password from a past administrator that hadn’t been used for seven or eight years, but it was still in our system and had never been deleted. That was the door they were able to hammer on enough to get into our network,” says chief deputy Calhoun. “We had three layers of backup and the ransomware had gotten to the first two and the third layer was a tape system,” says Calhoun — and the data on the tapes was four weeks old, meaning a month of data was potentially about to be lost.

There was, however, another way: the Sheriff’s Office turned to MonsterCloud, a cybersecurity firm that specializes in ransomware removal and recovery — a service it offers free of charge to law enforcement agencies. As a result, Lauderdale County was able to get back up and running in days. “They were able to get most of our data in about 36 hours,” says Calhoun.   [Source: ZDNet]

Two-Timing Burglar

A 35-year-old Woodridge, Illinois, man was charged with burglary and felony retail theft after stealing headphones from a Naperville store and coming back a few hours later for a television, Naperville police said. Christian Rojas Alvarez, of the 2100 block of Apple Lane, was arrested in connection with the Tuesday thefts at Walmart, police said.

Officers were called to the store about 7:15 p.m. in response to the two incidents involving the same suspect, police said. The first occurred about 2:30 p.m. when a man left the store without paying for a $79 pair of headphones. Three and a half hours later, the same man was stopped by Walmart crime prevention employees as he was walking out with a $278 television, police said. Rojas Alvarez was able to flee the scene but was apprehended about 9 p.m. according to police.   [Source: Chicago Tribune]

Tri-state robbery spree

Two Newark-area men were arrested in Pennsylvania on Wednesday and charged with committing armed robberies in that state, as well as Delaware and Maryland. Investigators identified the suspects as Joshua Foster, 27, and Kyle Jones, 29. Members of the Westtown-East Goshen Regional Police Department and the Tredyffrin Police Department arrested Foster and Jones early in Chester County moments after the pair allegedly had committed its second robbery in that area in a three-day period, police said. Foster and Jones remained jailed in Chester County Prison, each in lieu of $300,000 bond, according to police.

On Sunday, three days before they were captured in Pennsylvania, Foster and Jones allegedly committed a knifepoint robbery at the 7-Eleven in the 1500 block of Elkton Road, just over the Delaware/Maryland state line. In that holdup, one of the men, wearing a tan ski mask, black hooded sweatshirt and yellow gloves, allegedly walked behind the unoccupied 7-Eleven checkout counter at 7:10 a.m. and attempted to open the cash register, reported Lt. Michael Holmes, a spokesman for the Cecil County Sheriff’s Office. Seconds later, a worker who had been elsewhere in the store walked into the checkout area, where he was approached by the knifeman, Holmes said. Both are charged with robbery, conspiracy, aggravated assault, simple assault, retail theft, theft by unlawful taking, receiving stolen property, recklessly endangering another person, terroristic threats, prohibited offensive weapons, possessing instruments of crime, harassment and disorderly conduct, police added.   [Source: Newark Post]

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