COLUMBUS (WCMH) – Ken Garrett went to police several months ago after getting mail from a bank where he didn’t have an account.
“It was a notification, a change-of-address form that I needed to fill out, because I had an account there,” Garrett said.
But because he didn’t have an account there, Garrett went to the bank to find out what was happening. He said he learned someone had opened an account there using Garrett’s personal information.
“It’s kind of maddening, just a feeling of being violated,” Garrett said.
He said he and his wife “never threw anything out. We always shredded our mail and did kind of things like that, but that’s not actually how this information was gotten.”
Garrett’s information was taken from the computer of his accountant, according to a Franklin County search warrant affidavit.
That accountant spoke to NBC4 by phone, explaining he had hired a man as a computer technician to upgrade his computer’s operating system. The technician was a referral from a friend and neighbor.
The accountant said about a dozen of his customers had their information compromised.
The man suspected of doing it has not yet been charged by Gahanna police, and no one was home Tuesday at the address where that search warrant was executed on Monday.
Garrett and his wife dealt with the aftermath of the identity theft for months, notifying credit agencies, the Federal Trade Commission and Social Security, so no one could start fraudulent accounts.
Still, he said the experience has been frustrating.
“We didn’t know who had our information, we didn’t know what their intention was, we certainly didn’t want our credit hurt,” Garrett said. “You start mistrusting a lot of things and there’s always that element working.”