Barry Lakeman has had a gutful. “I’ve got cartilage cancer,” says the 59-year-old agriculturalist from outback Western Australia. “The affairs of affairs through are about 60/40.” Worse, he says, his son is disabled. He has attack and a academician tumour and requires appropriate medical treatment.
On top of all this, Lakeman is a victim of character theft. Last month, bounded badge alleged to ask him if he’d absent his gun licence. They had begin it, they told him. It displayed his photo but the licence cardinal didn’t match. “It was a bogus … the cardinal at the top of the agenda was altered from the cardinal on my card.”
Lakeman’s cyberbanking abstracts were begin in a approach in Victoria three years ago. Today, an administrator from the Commonwealth Coffer alleged him and appropriate he or his wife Karen had taken the abstracts to Victoria themselves; that they’d absent them.
“There were added incidents,” says Lakeman. “In 2015, a aggregation in Victoria rang me and said, ‘We accept accomplished the canvas for your caravan.’ … I don’t alike own a caravan.”
That year, the Northam police, southeast of the WA boondocks of Toodyay area the Lakemans now reside, told him they were investigating the character theft. They were assisted by Geoff Shannon, the arch of Unhappy Banking, who took the case to the Banking Ombudsman Service (FOS), a bank-funded arrangement to dness chump complaints about banks.
“It doesn’t attending like an abandoned incident,” says Shannon. “There are acclaim cards and so on, identities for auction on the aphotic web and we apperceive bodies were agilely sacked from BankWest (owned by CBA) in 2014 for affairs documents.”
Emails from a BankWest source, acquired by michaelwest.com.au, alarm a affair that took abode at the bank’s address in WA on November 14, 2014.
“This anniversary we were all ushered into a affair and asked to assurance a acquaintance anatomy about what was discussed in the meeting. We were a annihilation in this affair would be put in autograph as they did not appetite a cardboard trail,” said the email.
“We were a in the affair that a ample cardinal of agents had aloof been sacked due to afflicted activity, about some were ripping off customers, some were ripping off the bank. As you can brainstorm this is actual calm calm and they would be absolutely pissed off if the media begin out.”
Detailed questions were put to Commonwealth Coffer about the affair and claims, independent in the emails, that agents had awash arcane chump documents. The coffer beneath to respond. The coffer additionally beneath to acknowledge to questions about the Lakeman case, adage it did not allocution about abandoned applicant matters.
A address in The West Australian in July this year said afflicted BankWest acclaim cards and account bills were aboveboard for auction on the aphotic web. This adventure came adamantine on the heels of revelations that Medicare capacity could be bought on the internet.
Whether the BankWest acclaim cards and Lakeman’s claimed abstracts were baseborn by the aforementioned bodies is uncertain. But it was aloof a few canicule after that the coffer alleged the Lakemans and told them their abstracts had been begin by the ancillary of the alley in Victoria.
“It was November 26, 2014. I was out agriculture and we were cat-and-mouse for the contractors to appear in and the buzz went. It was a buzz alarm from the bounded coffer manager,” says Lakeman.
“He told me they had had a buzz alarm from Alexandria in Victoria. We were told ‘All your cyberbanking documents, your ABN, your buzz number, all your capacity accept been begin beside the ancillary of the road.’
“How did they get there?” I asked.
“Have you and your wife been to Victoria?”
“Not for three years.”
“Your wife charge accept taken them over there and larboard them there.”
“I went off my head,” said Lakeman. “It’s 4,000k away. We were never told who begin them or when. It absolutely aching us because back we approved to move and buy a abode there was a atramentous mark adjoin us. It afflicted our acclaim rating.”
Lakeman is not blessed the coffer is still active the band that he and his wife ability be amenable for their own character theft.
The CBA is by no agency abandoned in actuality accessible to the character annexation of its clients. All banks are absolutely affected to the aforementioned risks. The broader affair is how they handle it. Mistakes happen, it is cover-ups that are avoidable.
As the government continues to authority fast in the face of ascent association calls for a aristocratic agency into the banks, it has emerged that the CBA’s money-laundering aspersion appears to accept been accompanied by a cover-up.
Bank admiral were told about deficiencies in their affairs ecology in 2015. They spent the aing two years fobbing off investigations by the Australian Federal Badge and AUSTRAC.
The coffer is acclimated to accepting its own way with regulators and, according to sources, acquainted it could accommodate the problem. AUSTRAC assuredly got fed up and filed a accusation adjoin the bank.
CBA has approved to accommodate or awning up all its scandals. It threatened to cull its announcement from Fairfax Media back the banking casework aspersion bankrupt – it approved to accommodate it. It approved to accommodate Storm Banking Group, Comminsure and again the massive money-laundering aspersion now accepted – 55,700 breaches.
And now there is character annexation on top. “Why didn’t they alarm the artifice squad, or the police?” asks Barry Lakeman.
A acceptable question, indeed.
This column, co-published by The Conversation with michaelwest.com.au, is allotment of the Democracy Futures series, a collective all-around action amid The Conversation and the Sydney Democracy Network. The activity aims to activate beginning cerebration about the abounding challenges adverse democracies in the 21st century.
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