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© Bank of America Corporation. All Rights Reserved. "Bank of America Merrill Lynch" is the marketing name for the global banking and global markets businesses of Bank of America Corporation. Lending, derivatives, and other commercial banking activities are performed globally by banking affiliates of Bank of America Corporation, including Bank of America, N.A., member FDIC. Securities, strategic advisory, and other investment banking activities are performed globally by investment banking affiliates of Bank of America Corporation ("Investment Banking Affiliates"), including, in the United States, Banc of America Securities LLC and Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Incorporated, which are both registered broker-dealers and members of FINRA and SIPC, and, in other jurisdictions, locally registered entities. Investment products offered by Investment Banking Affiliates: Are Not FDIC Insured * May Lose Value * Are Not Bank Guaranteed.
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Bank of America
American multinational banking and financial services corporation
This article is about a commercial bank unaffiliated with any government. For the central bank of the United States, see Federal Reserve System.
"BofA" redirects here. For the French illustrator, see Gus Bofa.
The Bank of America Corporate Center, headquarters of Bank of America in Charlotte, North Carolina
|Founded|| (via the merger of BankAmerica & NationsBank)|
(as its predecessor, the Massachusetts Bank, through the merger with FleetBoston in )
|Founder||Amadeo Giannini (BankAmerica)|
|Headquarters||Charlotte, North Carolina, U.S. (Corporate)|
New York, NY (Investment banking)
Number of locations
|4, retail financial centers & approximately 16, ATMs|
|Products||Asset management, banking, commodities, credit cards, equities trading, insurance, investment management, mortgage loans, mutual funds, private equity, risk management, wealth management|
|Revenue||US$ billion ()|
|US$ billion ()|
|US$ billion ()|
|Total assets||US$ trillion ()|
|Total equity||US$ billion ()|
|Owners||Berkshire Hathaway (%) The Vanguard Group (%) BlackRock (%)|
Number of employees
Bank of America Private Bank
The Bank of America Corporation (simply referred to as Bank of America, often abbreviated as BofA or BoA) is an American multinational investment bank and financial servicesholding company headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina. The bank was founded in San Francisco, and took its present form when NationsBank of Charlotte acquired it in It is the second largest banking institution in the United States, near me citizens bank JPMorgan Chase, and the eighth largest bank in the world. Bank of America is one of the Big Four banking institutions of the United States. It serves approximately % of all American bank deposits, in direct competition with JPMorgan Chase, Citigroup and Wells Fargo. Its primary financial services revolve around commercial banking, pnc virtual wallet sign in management, and investment banking.
One branch of its history stretches back to Bank of Italy, founded by Amadeo Pietro Giannini inwhich provided various banking options to Italian immigrants who faced service discrimination. Originally headquartered in San Francisco, California, Giannini acquired Banca d'America e d'Italia (Bank of America and Italy) in The passage of landmark federal banking legislation facilitated a rapid growth in the s, quickly establishing a prominent market share. After suffering a significant loss after the Russian bond default, BankAmerica, as it was then known, was acquired by the Charlotte-based NationsBank for US$62 billion. Following what was then the largest bank acquisition in history, the Bank of America Corporation was founded. Through a series of mergers and acquisitions, it built upon its commercial banking business by establishing Merrill Lynch for wealth management and Bank of America Merrill Lynch for investment banking in andrespectively (since renamed BofA Securities).
Both Bank of America and Merrill Lynch Wealth Management retain large market shares in their respective offerings. The investment bank is considered within the "Bulge Bracket" as the third largest investment bank in the world, as of [update]. Its wealth management side manages US$ trillion in assets under management (AUM) as the second largest wealth manager in the world, after UBS. In commercial banking, Bank of America operates—but does not necessarily maintain retail branches—in all 50 states of the United States, the District of Columbia and more than 40 other countries. Its commercial banking footprint encapsulates 46 million consumer and small business relationships at 4, banking centers and 15, automated teller machines (ATMs).
The bank's large market share, equitable bank north platte nebraska activities, and economic impact has led to numerous lawsuits and investigations regarding both mortgages and financial disclosures dating back to the financial crisis. Its corporate practices of servicing the middle class and wider banking community has yielded a substantial market share since the early 20th century. As of August[update], Bank of America has a $ billion market capitalization, making it the 13th largest company in the world. As the sixth largest American public company, it garnered $ billion in sales as of June[update]. Bank of America was ranked #25 on the Fortune rankings of the largest US corporations by total revenue. Likewise, Bank of America was also ranked #8 on the Global rankings done by Forbes. Bank of America was named the "World's Best Bank" by the Euromoney Institutional Investor in their Awards for Excellence.
The Bank of America name first appeared inwith the formation of Bank of America, Los Angeles. Init was acquired by Bank of Italy of San Francisco, which took the Bank of America name two years later.
The eastern portion of the Bank of America franchise can be traced towhen Massachusetts Bank was chartered, the first what credit score you need for amazon credit card chartered joint-stock owned bank in the United States and only the second bank to receive a charter in the United States. This bank became FleetBoston, with which Bank of America merged in InCommercial National Bank was founded in Charlotte. That bank merged with American Trust Company in to form American Commercial Bank. Two years later it became North Carolina National Bank when it merged with Security National Bank of Greensboro. Init merged with C&S/Sovran Corporation of Atlanta and Norfolk to form NationsBank.
The central portion of the franchise dates towhen Commercial National Bank and Continental National Bank of Chicago merged in to form Continental & Commercial National Bank, which evolved into Continental Illinois National Bank & Trust.
Bank of Italy
Main article: Bank of Italy (United States)
From a naming perspective, the history of Bank of America dates back to October 17,when Amadeo Pietro Giannini founded the Bank of Italy in San Francisco. InBank of America, Los Angeles was established with Giannini as a minority investor. The two banks merged in and consolidated with other bank holdings to create what would become the largest banking institution in the country. InDeutsche Bank AG acquired % of Banca d'America e d'Italia, a bank established in Naples, Italy, in following the name-change of Banca dell'Italia Meridionale with the latter established in  Inanother corporation, Bancitaly Corporation, was organized by A. P. Giannini, the largest stockholder of which was Stockholders Auxiliary Corporation. This company acquired the stocks of various banks located in New York City and certain foreign countries. Inthe Bank opened a Delegation in New York in order to follow American political, economic and financial affairs more closely. InGiannini merged his bank with Bank of America, Los Angeles, headed by Orra E. Monnette. Bank of Italy was renamed on November 3,to Bank of America National Trust and Savings Association, which was the only such designated bank in the United States at that time. Giannini and Monnette headed the resulting company, serving as co-chairs.
Expansion in California
Giannini introduced branch banking shortly after legislation in California allowed for branch banking in the state, establishing the bank's first branch outside San Francisco in in San Jose. By the bank had banking offices in California with aggregate resources of over US$ billion. There is a replica of the Bank of Italy branch bank in History Park in San Jose, and the Bank of Italy Building is an important downtown landmark. Giannini sought to build a national bank, expanding into most of the western states as well as into the insurance industry, under the aegis of his holding company, Transamerica Corporation. In regulators succeeded in forcing the separation of Transamerica Corporation and Bank of America under the Clayton Antitrust Act. The passage of the Bank Holding Company Act of prohibited banks from owning non-banking subsidiaries such as insurance companies. Bank of America and Transamerica were separated, with the latter company continuing in the insurance sector. However, federal banking regulators prohibited Bank of America's interstate banking activity, and Walking the west highland way in 4 days of America's domestic banks outside California were forced into a separate company that eventually became First Interstate Bancorp, later acquired by Wells Fargo and Company in Only in the s, with a change in federal banking legislation and regulation, could Bank of America again expand its domestic consumer banking activity outside California.
New technologies also allowed the direct linking of credit cards with individual bank accounts. Inthe bank introduced the BankAmericard, which changed its name to Visa in  A coalition of regional bankcard associations introduced Interbank in to compete with BankAmericard. Interbank became Master Charge in and then MasterCard in 
Following the passage of the Bank Holding Bank of america tech support Act of by the US Congress, BankAmerica Corporation was established for the purpose of owning and operating Bank of America and its subsidiaries.
Bank of America expanded outside California inwith its acquisition, orchestrated in part by Stephen McLin, of Seafirst Corporation of Seattle, Washington, and its wholly owned banking subsidiary, Seattle-First National Bank. Seafirst was at risk of seizure by the federal government after becoming insolvent due to a series of bad loans to the oil industry. BankAmerica continued to operate its new subsidiary as Seafirst rather than Bank of America until the merger with NationsBank.
BankAmerica experienced huge losses in and due to the placement of a series of bad loans in how to i embed a youtube video in powerpoint Third World, particularly in Latin America. The company fired its CEO, Sam Armacost in Though Armacost blamed the problems on his predecessor, A.W. (Tom) Clausen, Clausen was appointed to replace Armacost.[citation https www suntrust online banking The losses resulted in a huge decline of BankAmerica stock, making it vulnerable to a hostile takeover. First Interstate Bancorp of Los Angeles (which had originated from banks once owned by BankAmerica), launched such a bid in the fall ofalthough BankAmerica rebuffed it, mostly by selling operations. It sold its FinanceAmerica subsidiary to Chrysler and the brokerage firm Charles Schwab and Co. back to Mr. Schwab. It also sold Bank of America and Italy to Deutsche Bank. By the time of the stock-market crash, BankAmerica's share price had fallen to $8, but by it had rebounded mightily to become one of the biggest gainers of that half-decade.
BankAmerica's next big acquisition came in The company acquired Security Pacific Corporation and its subsidiary Security Pacific Valley national bank savings rates Bank in California and other banks in Arizona, Idaho, Oregon, and Washington, which Security Pacific had acquired in a series of acquisitions in the late s. This represented, at the time, the largest bank acquisition in history. Federal regulators, however, forced the sale of roughly half of Security Pacific's Washington subsidiary, the former Rainier Bank, as the combination of Seafirst and Security Pacific Washington would have given BankAmerica too large a share of the market in that state. The Washington branches were divided and sold to West One Bancorp (now U.S. Bancorp) and KeyBank. Later that year, BankAmerica expanded into Nevada by acquiring Valley Bank of Nevada.
In BankAmerica acquired the Continental Illinois National Bank and Trust Co. of Chicago. At the time, no bank possessed the resources to bail out Continental, so the federal government operated the bank for nearly a decade.Illinois then regulated branch banking extremely heavily, so Bank of America Illinois was a single-unit bank until the 21st century. BankAmerica moved its national lending department to Chicago in an effort to establish a financial beachhead in the region.
These mergers helped BankAmerica Corporation to once again become the largest U.S. bank holding company in terms of deposits, but the company fell to second place in behind North Carolina's fast-growing NationsBank Corporation, and to third in behind First Union Corp.
On the capital markets side, the acquisition of Continental Illinois helped BankAmerica to build a leveraged finance origination- and distribution business, which allowed the firm's existing broker-dealer, BancAmerica Securities (originally named BA Securities), to become a full-service franchise. In addition, inBankAmerica acquired Robertson Stephens, a San Francisco–based investment bank specializing in high technology for $million. Robertson Stephens was integrated into BancAmerica Securities, and the combined subsidiary was renamed "BancAmerica Robertson Stephens".
Merger of NationsBank and BankAmerica
InBankAmerica lent hedge fundD. E. Shaw & Co. $billion in order to run various businesses for the bank. However, D.E. Shaw suffered significant loss after the Russia bond default.NationsBank of Charlotte acquired BankAmerica in October in what was the largest bank acquisition in history at that time.
While NationsBank was the nominal survivor, the merged bank took the better-known name of Bank of America. Hence, the holding company was renamed Bank of America Corporation, while NationsBank, N.A. merged with Bank of America NT&SA to form Bank of America, N.A. as the remaining legal bank entity. The combined bank operates under Federal Charterwhich was granted to Giannini's Bank of Italy on March 1, However, the merged company was and still is headquartered in Charlotte, and retains NationsBank's pre stock price history. All U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filings before are listed under NationsBank, not Bank of America. NationsBank president, chairman, and Luxury vacation rentals rehoboth beach delaware Hugh McColl, took on the same roles with the merged company.
InBank of America possessed combined assets of $billion, as well as 4, branches in 22 states. Despite the size of the two companies, federal regulators insisted only upon the divestiture of 13 branches in New Mexico, in towns that would be left with only a single bank following the combination. The broker-dealer, NationsBanc Montgomery Securities, was named Banc of America Securities in 
InMcColl stepped down and diy home remedy for poison ivy Ken Lewis as his successor.
InBank of America announced it would purchase Boston-based bank FleetBoston Financial for $47billion in cash and stock. By merging with Bank of America, all of its banks and branches were given the Bank of America logo. At the time of merger, FleetBoston was the seventh largest bank in United States with $billion in assets, over 20 million customers and revenue of $12billion. Hundreds of FleetBoston workers lost their jobs or were demoted, according to The Boston Globe.
On June 30,Bank of America announced it would purchase credit card giant MBNA for $35billion in cash and stock. The Federal Reserve Board gave final approval to the merger on December 15,and the merger closed on January 1, The acquisition of MBNA provided Bank of America a leading domestic and foreign credit card issuer. The combined Bank of America Card Services organization, including the former MBNA, had more than 40 million U.S. accounts and nearly $billion in outstanding balances. Under Bank of America, the operation was renamed FIA Card Services.
Bank of America operated under the name BankBoston in many other Latin American countries, including Brazil. In MayBank of America and Banco Itaú (Investimentos Itaú S.A.) entered into an acquisition agreement, through which Itaú agreed to acquire BankBoston's operations in Brazil, and was granted an exclusive right to purchase Bank of America's operations in Chile and Uruguay, in exchange for Itaú shares. The deal was signed in August
Prior to the transaction, BankBoston's Brazilian operations included asset management, private banking, a credit card portfolio, and small, middle-market, and large corporate segments. It had 66 branches andclients in Brazil. BankBoston in Chile had 44 branches and 58, clients and in Uruguay, it had 15 branches. In addition, there was a credit card company, OCA, in Uruguay, which had 23 branches. BankBoston N.A. in Uruguay, together with OCA, jointly servedclients. While the BankBoston name and trademarks were not part of the transaction, as part of the sale agreement, they cannot be used by Bank of America in Brazil, Chile or Uruguay following the transactions. Hence, the BankBoston name has disappeared from Brazil, Chile and Uruguay. The Itaú stock received by Bank of America in the transactions has allowed Bank of America's stake in Itaú to reach %. Banco de Boston de Brazil had been founded in
On November 20,Bank of America announced the purchase of The United States Trust Company for $billion, from the Charles Schwab Corporation. US Trust had about $billion of assets under management and over years of experience. The deal closed July 1, 
On September 14,Bank of America won approval from the Federal Reserve to acquire LaSalle Bank Corporation from ABN AMRO for $21billion. With this purchase, Bank of America possessed $trillion in assets. A Dutch court blocked the sale until it was later approved in July. The acquisition was completed on October 1, Many of LaSalle's branches and offices had already taken over smaller regional banks within the previous decade, such as Lansing and Detroit-based Michigan National Bank. The acquisition also included the Chicago Marathon event, which ABN AMRO acquired in Bank of America took over the event starting with the race.
The deal increased Bank of America's presence in Illinois, Michigan, and Indiana by branches, 17, commercial bank clients, million retail customers, and 1, ATMs. Bank of America became the largest bank in the Chicago market with offices and 14% of the deposit share, surpassing JPMorgan Chase.
LaSalle Bank and LaSalle Bank Midwest branches adopted the Bank of America name on May 5, 
Ken Lewis, who had lost the title of Chairman of the Board, announced that he would retire as CEO effective December 31,in part due to controversy and legal investigations concerning the purchase of Merrill Lynch. Brian Moynihan became president and CEO effective January 1,and afterward credit card charge offs and delinquencies declined in January. Bank of America also repaid the $45billion it had received from the Troubled Assets Relief Program.
Acquisition of Countrywide Financial
On August 23,the company announced a $2billion repurchase agreement for Countrywide Financial. This purchase of preferred stock was arranged to provide a return on investment of % per annum and provided the option to purchase common stock at a price of $18 per share.
On January 11,Bank of America announced that it would buy Countrywide Financial for $billion. In Marchit was reported that the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) was investigating Countrywide for possible fraud relating to home loans and mortgages. This news did not hinder the acquisition, which was completed in July , giving the bank a substantial market share of the mortgage business, and access to Countrywide's resources for servicing mortgages. The acquisition was seen as preventing a potential bankruptcy for Countrywide. Countrywide, however, denied that it was close to bankruptcy. Countrywide provided mortgage servicing for nine million mortgages valued at $trillion as of December 31, 
This purchase made Bank of America Corporation the leading mortgage originator and servicer in the U.S., controlling 20–25% of the home loan market. The deal was structured to merge Countrywide with the Red Oak Merger Corporation, which Bank of America created as an independent subsidiary. It has been suggested that the deal was structured this way to prevent a potential bankruptcy stemming from large losses in Countrywide hurting the parent organization by keeping Countrywide bankruptcy remote. Countrywide Financial has changed its name to Bank of America Home Loans.
In Decemberthe Justice Department announced a $ million settlement with Bank of America over discriminatory lending practice at Countrywide Financial. Attorney GeneralEric Holder said a federal probe found discrimination against qualified African-American and Latino borrowers from to He said that minority borrowers who qualified for prime loans were steered into higher-interest-rate subprime loans.
Acquisition of Merrill Lynch
On September 14,Bank of America announced its intention to purchase Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc. in an all-stock deal worth approximately $50billion. Merrill Lynch was at the time within days of collapse, and the acquisition effectively saved Merrill from bankruptcy. Around the same time Bank of America was reportedly also in talks to purchase Lehman Brothers, however a lack of government guarantees caused the bank to abandon talks with Lehman. Lehman Brothers filed for bankruptcy the same day Bank of America announced its plans to acquire Merrill Lynch. This acquisition made Bank of America the largest financial services company in the world.Temasek Holdings, the largest shareholder of Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc., briefly became one of the largest shareholders of Bank of America, with a 3% stake. However, taking a loss Reuters estimated at $3billion, the Singaporesovereign wealth fund sold its whole stake in Bank of America in the first quarter of 
Shareholders of both companies approved the acquisition on December 5,and the deal closed January 1,  Bank of America had planned to retain various members of the then Merrill Lynch's CEO, John Thain's management team after the merger. However, after Thain was removed from his position, most of his allies left. The departure of Nelson Chai, who had been named Asia-Pacific president, left just one of Thain's hires in place: Tom Montag, head of sales and trading.
The bank, in its January 16,earnings release, revealed massive losses at Merrill Lynch in the fourth quarter, which necessitated an infusion of money that had previously been negotiated with the government as part of the government-persuaded deal for the bank to acquire Merrill. Merrill recorded an operating loss of $billion in the quarter, mainly in its sales and trading operations, led by Tom Montag. The bank also disclosed it tried to abandon the deal in December after the extent of Merrill's trading losses surfaced, but was compelled to complete the merger by the U.S. government. The bank's stock price sank to $, its lowest level in 17 years, after announcing earnings and the Merrill mishap. The market capitalization of Bank of America, including Merrill Lynch, was then $45billion, less than the $50billion it offered for Merrill just four months earlier, and down $billion from the merger announcement.
Bank of America CEO Kenneth Lewis testified before Congress that he had some misgivings about the acquisition of Merrill Allied savings bank contact number and that federal official pressured him to proceed with the deal or face losing his job and endangering the bank's relationship with federal regulators.
Lewis' statement is backed up by internal emails subpoenaed by Republican lawmakers on the House Oversight Committee. In one of the emails, Richmond Federal Reserve President Jeffrey Lacker threatened that if the acquisition did not go through, and later Bank of America were forced to request federal assistance, the management of Bank of America would be "gone". Other emails, read by Congressman Dennis Kucinich during the course of Lewis' testimony, state that Mr. Lewis had foreseen the outrage from his shareholders that the purchase of Merrill would cause, and asked government regulators to issue a letter stating that the government had ordered him to complete the deal to acquire Merrill. Lewis, for his part, states he didn't recall requesting such a letter.
The acquisition made Bank of America the number one underwriter of global high-yield debt, the third largest underwriter of global equity and the ninth largest adviser on global mergers and acquisitions. As the credit crisis eased, losses at Merrill Lynch subsided, and the subsidiary generated $billion of Bank of America's $billion in profit by the end of quarter one inand over 25% in quarter 3 
On September 28,Bank of America settled the class action lawsuit over the Merrill Lynch acquisition and will pay $ billion. This was one of the first major securities class action lawsuits stemming from the financial crisis of – to settle. Many major financial institutions had a stake in this lawsuit, including Chicago Clearing Corporation, hedge funds, and bank trusts, due to the belief that Bank of America stock was a sure investment.
Federal Troubled Asset Relief Program
On January 16,Bank of America received $20billion and a guarantee of $billion in potential losses from the U.S. government through the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP). This was in addition to the $25billion given to the bank in the fall of through TARP. The additional payment was part of a deal with the U.S. government to preserve Bank of America's merger with Merrill Lynch. Since then, members of the U.S. Congress have expressed considerable concern about how this money has been spent, especially since some of the recipients have been accused of misusing the bailout money. Then CEO Ken Lewis was quoted as claiming "We are still lending, and we are lending far more because of the TARP program." Members of the U.S. House of Representatives, however, were skeptical and quoted many anecdotes about loan are us markets open today (particularly small business owners) being denied loans and credit card holders facing stiffer terms on the debt in their card accounts.
According to an article in The New York Times published on March 15,Bank of America received an additional $billion in government bailout money via the bailout of American International Group.
As a result of its federal bailout and management problems, The Wall Street Journal reported that the Bank of America was operating under a secret "memorandum of understanding" (MOU) from the U.S. government that requires it to "overhaul its board and address perceived problems with risk and liquidity management". With the federal action, the institution has taken several steps, including arranging for six of its directors to resign and forming a Regulatory Impact Office. Bank of America faces several deadlines in July and August and if not met, could face harsher penalties by federal regulators. Bank of America did not respond to The Wall Street Journal story.
On December 2,Bank of America announced it would repay the entire $45billion it received allied savings bank contact number TARP and exit the program, using $billion of excess liquidity along with $billion to be gained in "common equivalent securities" (Tier 1 capital). The bank announced it had completed the repayment on December 9. Bank of America's Ken Lewis said during the announcement, "We appreciate the critical role that the U.S. government played last fall in helping to stabilize financial markets, and we are pleased to be able to fully repay the investment, with interest As America's largest bank, we have a responsibility to make good on the taxpayers' investment, and our record shows that we have been able to fulfill that commitment while continuing to lend."
On August 3,Bank of America agreed to pay a $33million fine, without admission or denial of charges, to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) over the non-disclosure of an agreement to pay up to $billion of bonuses at Merrill. The bank approved the bonuses before the merger but did not disclose them to its shareholders when the shareholders were considering approving the Merrill acquisition, in December The issue was originally investigated by New York Attorney GeneralAndrew Cuomo, who commented after the suit and announced a settlement that "the timing of the bonuses, as well as the disclosures relating to them, constituted a 'surprising fit of corporate irresponsibility'" and "our investigation of these and other matters pursuant to New York's Martin Act will continue." Congressman Kucinich commented at the same time that "This may not be the last fine that Bank of America pays for how it handled its merger of Merrill Lynch." A federal judge, Jed Rakoff, in an unusual action, refused to approve the settlement on August 5. A first hearing before the judge on August 10 was at times heated, and he was "sharply critic[al]" of the bonuses. David Rosenfeld represented the SEC, and Lewis J. Liman, son of Arthur L. Liman, represented the bank. The actual amount of first bank careers colorado paid was $billion, of which $million was "guaranteed" and the rest was shared amongst 39, workers who received average payments of $91,; people received more than $1million in bonuses; at least one person received a more than $33million bonus.
On September 14, the judge rejected the settlement and at and t customer service phone number the parties to prepare for trial to begin no later than February 1, The judge focused much of his criticism on the fact that the fine in the case would be paid by the bank's shareholders, who were the ones that were supposed to have been injured by the lack of disclosure. He wrote, "It is quite something else for the very management that is accused of having lied to its shareholders to determine how much of those victims' money should be used to make the case against the management go away," "The proposed settlement," the judge continued, "suggests a rather cynical relationship between the parties: the S.E.C. gets to claim that it is exposing wrongdoing on the part of the Bank of America in a high-profile merger; the bank's management gets to claim that they have been coerced into an onerous settlement by overzealous regulators. And all this is done at the expense, not only of the shareholders but also of the truth."
While ultimately deferring to the SEC, in FebruaryJudge Rakoff approved a revised settlement with a $million fine "reluctantly", calling the accord "half-baked justice at best" and "inadequate and misguided". Addressing one of the concerns he raised in September, the fine will be "distributed only to Bank of America shareholders harmed by the non-disclosures, or 'legacy shareholders', an improvement on the prior $33million while still "paltry", according to the judge. Case: SEC v. Bank of America Corp., cv, United States District Court for the Southern District of New York.
Investigations also were held on this issue in the United States House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, under chairman Edolphus Towns (D-NY) and in its investigative Domestic Policy Subcommittee under Kucinich.
Inthe U.S. government accused the bank of defrauding schools, hospitals, and dozens of state and local government organizations via misconduct and illegal activities involving the investment of proceeds from municipal bond sales. As a result, the bank agreed to pay $million, including $25million to the Internal Revenue Service and $million to the state attorney general, to the affected organizations to settle the allegations.
Former bank official Douglas Campbell pleaded guilty to antitrust, conspiracy, and wire fraud charges. As of January[update], other bankers and brokers are under indictment or investigation.
On October 24,the top federal prosecutor in Manhattan filed a lawsuit alleging that Bank of America fraudulently cost American taxpayers more than $1 billion when Countrywide Financial sold toxic mortgages to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. The scheme was called 'Hustle', or High Speed Swim Lane. On May 23,the Second U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the finding of fact by the jury that low quality mortgages were supplied by Countrywide to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in the "Hustle" case supported only "intentional breach of contract," not fraud. The action, for civil fraud, relied on provisions of the Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery and Enforcement Act. The decision turned on lack of intent to defraud at the time the contract to supply mortgages was made.
Downsizing ( to )
DuringBank of America began conducting personnel reductions of an estimated 36, people, contributing to intended savings of $5 billion per year by 
In DecemberForbes ranked Bank of America's financial entergy login pay bill 91st out of the nation's largest banks and thrift institutions.
Bank of America cut around 16, jobs in a quicker fashion by the end of as revenue continued to decline because of new regulations and a slow economy. This put a plan one year ahead of time to eliminate 30, jobs under a cost-cutting program, called Project New BAC. In the first quarter ofBerkshire bank purchased 20 Bank of America branches in Central and eastern New York for million dollars. The branches were from Utica/Rome region and down the Mohawk Valley east to the capital region.
In April and MayBank of America sold two dozen branches in Michigan to Huntington Bancshares. The locations were converted to Huntington National Bank branches in September.
As part of its new strategy Bank of America is focused on growing its mobile banking platform. As of [update], Bank of America has 31 million active online users and 16 million mobile users. Its retail banking branches have decreased to 4, as a result of increased mobile banking use and a decline in customer branch visits. Bythe number of mobile users has increased to million and the number of locations fell to 4, at the end of June.
Sale of stake in China Construction Bank
InBank of America acquired a 9% stake in China Construction Bank, one of the Big Four banks in China, for $3billion. It represented the company's largest foray into China's growing banking sector. Bank of America has offices in Hong Kong, Shanghai, and Guangzhou and was looking to greatly expand its Chinese business as a result of this deal. InBank of America was awarded Project Finance Deal of the Year at the ALB Hong Kong Law Awards. In NovemberBank of America announced plans to divest most of its stake in the Capital one customer service contact us Construction Bank.
In SeptemberBank of America sold its remaining stake in the China Construction Bank for as much as $ billion, marking the firm's full exit from the country.
$17 billion settlement with Justice Department
In AugustBank of America agreed to a near–$17 billion deal to settle claims against it relating to the sale of toxic mortgage-linked securities including subprime home loans, in what was believed to be the largest settlement in U.S. corporate history. The bank agreed with the U.S. Justice Department to pay $ billion in fines, and $7 billion in relief to the victims of the faulty loans which included homeowners, borrowers, pension funds and municipalities. Real estate economist Jed Kolko said the settlement is a "drop in the bucket" compared to the $ billion in damages done to 11 million homeowners. Since the settlement covered such a substantial portion of the market, he said for most consumers "you're out of luck."
Much of the government's prosecution was based on information provided by three whistleblowers – Shareef Abdou (a senior vice president at the bank), Robert Madsen (a professional appraiser employed by a bank subsidiary), and Edward O'Donnell (a Fannie Mae official). The three men received $ million in whistleblower awards.
Bank of America has formed a partnership with the United States Department of Defense creating a newly chartered mission inn san jose ca DOD Community Bank ("Community Bank") providing full banking services to military personnel at 68 branches and ATM locations on U.S. military installations in Guantanamo Bay Naval BaseCuba, Diego Garcia, Germany, Japan, Italy, Kwajalein Atoll, South Korea, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom. Even though Bank of America operates Community Bank, customer services are not interchangeable between the two financial institutions, meaning that a Community Bank customer cannot go to a Bank of America branch and withdraw from their account and vice versa. Deposits made into checking and savings accounts are insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation up to $, despite the fact that none of Community's operating homes for sale in natomas sacramento ca are located within the jurisdictional borders of the United States.
Decision not to finance makers of military-style guns
In AprilBank of America announced that it would stop providing financing to makers of military-style weapons such as the AR rifle. In announcing the decision, Bank of America referenced recent mass shootings and said that it wanted to "contribute in any way we can" to reduce them.
Return to expansion (–present)
InBank of America began expanding organically, opening branches in cities where it previously did not have a retail presence. They started that year in Denver, followed by Minneapolis–Saint Paul and Indianapolis, in all cases having at least one of its Big Four competitors, with Chase Bank being available in Denver and Indianapolis, while Wells Fargo is available in Denver and the Twin Cities. The Twin Cities market is also the home market of U.S. Bancorp, the largest non-Big Four rival.
In JanuaryBank of America announced an organic expansion of its retail footprint into Pittsburgh and surrounding areas, to supplement its existing commercial lending and investment businesses in the area. Before the expansion, Pittsburgh had been one of the largest US cities without a retail presence by any of the Big Four, with locally based PNC Financial Services (no. 6 nationally) having a commanding market share in the area; this coincided with Feliz navidad jose feliciano lyrics making a similar expansion into Pittsburgh. By the end of the fiscal yearBank of America had become Pittsburgh's 16th largest bank by deposits, which considering the dominance of PNC and BNY Mellon in first federal savings bank of iowa market is considered relatively impressive. ByBank of America had moved up to 12th in the market.
In FebruaryBank of America announced it would expand into Ohio across the state's three 1st day of summer australia cities (Cleveland, Columbus, and Cincinnati), which are strongholds of Chase. Columbus serves as the bank's hub in Ohio due to its central location as the state's capital, its overall size and growth, and an existing Bank of America call center for its credit card division in suburban Westerville. Within a year of entering Ohio, Columbus quickly saw the bank become the 5th largest in the market by deposits, behind only banks either based in Ohio (Fifth Third Bank and locally-based Huntington Bancshares) or have a major presence as a result of an acquisition of an Ohio-based institution (Chase and PNC), and ahead of US Bancorp (also with a large presence due to acquiring an Ohio-based bank), Ohio-based KeyBank, and several local institutions. As ofBank of America is the 9th largest bank by deposits in all of Ohio.
Bank of America generates 90% of its revenues in open 5 3 bank account online domestic market. The core of Bank of America's strategy is to be the number one bank in its domestic market. It has achieved this through key acquisitions.
Consumer Banking, the largest division in the company, provides financial services to consumers and small businesses including, banking, investments, and lending products including business loans, mortgages, and credit cards. It provides stockbroker services via Merrill Edge, an electronic trading platform. The consumer banking division represented 38% of the company's total revenue in  The company earns revenue from interest income, service charges, and fees. The company is also a mortgage servicer. It competes primarily with the retail banking arms of America's three other megabanks: Citigroup, JPMorgan Chase, and Wells Fargo. The Consumer Banking organization includes over 4, retail financial centers and approximately 15, automated teller machines.
Bank of America is a member of the Global ATM Alliance, a joint venture of several major international banks that provides for reduced fees for consumers using their ATM card or check card at another bank within the Global ATM Alliance when traveling internationally. This feature is restricted to withdrawals using a debit card and users are still subject to foreign currency conversion fees, credit card withdrawals are still subject to cash advance fees and foreign currency conversion fees.
The Global Banking division provides banking services, including investment banking and lending products to businesses. It includes the businesses of Global Corporate Banking, Global Commercial Banking, Business Banking, and Global Investment Banking. The division represented 22% of the company's revenue in 
Before Bank of America's acquisition of Merrill Lynch, the Global Corporate and Investment Banking (GCIB) business operated as Banc of America Securities LLC. The bank's investment banking activities operate under the Merrill Lynch subsidiary and provided mergers and acquisitions advisory, underwriting, capital markets, as well as sales & trading in fixed income and equities markets. Its strongest groups include Leveraged Finance, Syndicated Loans, and mortgage-backed securities. It also has one of the largest research teams on Wall Street. Bank of America Merrill Lynch is headquartered in New York City.
Global Wealth and Investment Management
The Global Wealth and Investment Management (GWIM) division manages investment assets of institutions and individuals. It includes the businesses of Merrill Lynch Global Wealth Management and U.S. Trust and represented 21% of the company's total revenue in  It is among the 10 largest U.S. wealth managers. It has over $ trillion in client balances. GWIM has five primary lines of business: Premier Banking & Investments (including Bank of America Investment Services, Inc.), The Private Bank, Family Wealth Advisors, and Bank of America Specialist.
The Bank of america tech support Markets division offers services to institutional clients, including trading in financial securities. The division provides research and other services such as market maker, and risk management using derivatives. The division represented 19% of the company's total revenues in 
On April 9,the company announced minimum wage will be increased beginning May 1,to $ an hour until it reaches a goal of $ an hour in 
The Bank of America principal executive offices are located in the Bank of America Corporate Center, Charlotte, North Carolina. The skyscraper is located at North Tryon Street, and stands at ft ( m), having been completed in
InBank of America cut ties to the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC).
Bank of America's Global Corporate and Investment Banking has its U.S. headquarters in Charlotte, European headquarters in Dublin, and Asian headquarters in Hong Kong and Singapore.
Inthe bank offered employees a $3, rebate for the purchase of hybrid vehicles. The company also provided a $1, rebate or a lower interest rate for customers whose homes qualified as energy efficient. InBank of America partnered with Brighter Planet to offer an eco-friendly credit card, and later a debit card, which help build renewable energy projects with each purchase. Inthe bank completed construction of the 1 Bank of America Center in Charlotte center city. The tower, and accompanying hotel, is a LEED-certified building.
Bank of America has also donated money to help health centers in Massachusetts and made a $1 million donation in to help homeless shelters in Miami.
Inthe bank made a ten-year commitment of $ billion to provide affordable mortgages, build affordable housing, support small businesses and create jobs in what credit score you need for amazon credit card neighborhoods.
Inthe bank pledged $ million over a ten-year period for community development lending and affordable housing programs.
Chief Executive Officer
List of CEOs
- Hugh McColl (–)
- Ken Lewis (–)
- Brian Moynihan (– )
CEO Pay Ratio
Pursuant to Section (b) of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, publicly traded companies are required to disclose (1) the median total annual compensation of all employees other than the CEO and (2) the ratio of the CEO's annual total compensation to that of the median employee (CEO Pay Ratio).
Total compensation for Brian Moynihan, CEO, amounted to $22,, and total compensation of the median employee was determined to be $92, The resulting pay ratio is estimated to be 
In AugustBank of America was sued for $10 billion by American International Group. Another lawsuit filed in September pertained to $ billion in mortgage-backed securities Bank of America sold to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. That December, Bank of America agreed uib edd pay $ million to settle a federal government claim that Countrywide Financial had discriminated against Hispanic and African-American homebuyers from toprior to being acquired by BofA. In SeptemberBofA settled out of court for $ billion in a class action lawsuit filed by BofA shareholders who felt they were misled about the purchase of Merrill Lynch.
On February 9,it was announced that the five largest mortgage servicers (Ally/GMAC, Bank of America, Citi, JPMorgan Chase, and Wells Fargo) agreed to a historic settlement with the federal government and 49 states. The settlement, known as the National Mortgage Settlement (NMS), required the servicers to provide about $26 billion in relief to distressed homeowners and in direct payments to the states and the federal government. This settlement amount makes the NMS the second largest civil settlement in U.S. history, only trailing the Tobacco Master Settlement Agreement. The five banks were also required to comply with new mortgage servicing standards. Oklahoma held out and agreed to settle with the banks separately.
On October 24,American federal prosecutors filed a $1 billion civil lawsuit against Bank of America for mortgage fraud under the False Claims Act, which provides for possible penalties of triple the damages suffered. The government asserted that Countrywide, which was acquired by Bank of America, rubber-stamped mortgage loans to risky borrowers and forced taxpayers to guarantee billions of bad loans through Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. The suit was filed by Preet Bharara, the United States attorney in Manhattan, the inspector general of FHFA and the special inspector for the Troubled Asset Relief Program. In MarchBank of America settled the suit by agreeing to pay $ billion to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and to buy back around $ billion worth of mortgage bonds.
In Aprilthe Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) ordered Bank of America to provide an estimated $ million in relief to consumers harmed by practices related to credit card add-on products. According to the Bureau, roughly million customers were affected by deceptive marketing of add-on products, and million customers were illegally charged for credit monitoring and reporting services they were not receiving. The deceptive marketing misconduct involved telemarketing scripts containing misstatements and off-script sales pitches made by telemarketers that were misleading and omitted pertinent information. The unfair billing practices involved billing customers for privacy-related products without having the authorization necessary to perform the credit monitoring and credit report retrieval services. As a result, the company billed customers for services they did not receive, unfairly charged consumers for interest and fees, illegally charged approximately million accounts, and failed to provide the product benefit.
A $ million settlement was reached in April with former chief financial officer for Bank of America, Joe L. Price, over allegations that the bank's management withheld material information related to its merger with Merrill Lynch. In Augustthe United States Department of Justice and the bank agreed to a $ billion agreement over the sale of risky, mortgage-backed securities before the Great Recession; the loans behind the securities were transferred to the company when it acquired banks such as Merrill Lynch and Countrywide in  As a whole, the three firms provided $ billion of mortgage-backed securities from to  The settlement was structured to give $7 billion in consumer relief and $ billion in penalty payments to the federal government and state governments; California, for instance, received $ million to recompense public pension funds. The settlement was the largest in United States history between a single company and the federal government.
Informer senior executive Omeed Malik filed a $ million arbitration case through FINRA against Bank of America after the company investigated him for alleged sexual misconduct. His defamation claim was on the basis of retaliation, breach of contract, and discrimination against his Muslim background. Malik received an eight-figure settlement in July.
Parmalat SpA is a multinational Italian dairy and food corporation. Following Parmalat's bankruptcy, the company sued Bank of America for $10billion, alleging the bank profited from its knowledge of Parmalat's financial difficulties. The parties announced a settlement in Julyresulting in Bank of America paying Parmalat $million in October  In a related case, on April 18,an Italian court acquitted Bank of America and three other large banks, along with their employees, of charges they assisted Parmalat in concealing its fraud, and of lacking sufficient internal controls to prevent such frauds. Prosecutors did not immediately say whether they would appeal the rulings. In Parma, the banks were still charged with covering up the fraud.
Consumer credit controversies
In JanuaryBank of America began notifying some customers without payment problems that their interest rates were more than doubled, up to 28%. The bank was criticized for raising rates on customers in good standing, and for declining to explain why it had done so. In Septembera Bank of America credit card customer, Ann Minch, posted a video on YouTube criticizing the bank for raising her interest rate. After the video went viral, she was contacted by a Bank of America representative who lowered her rate. The story attracted national attention from television and internet commentators. More recently, the bank has been criticized for allegedly seizing three properties that were not under their ownership, apparently due to incorrect addresses on their legal documents.
Purchasing of Internet Domains in apparent premtive PR campaign.
In OctoberJulian Assange of WikiLeaks claimed that his organization possessed a 5 gigabyte hard drive formerly used by a Bank of America executive and that Wikileaks intended to publish its contents.
In Novemberbank of america tech support published an interview with Assange in which he stated his intent to publish information which would turn a major U.S. bank "inside out". In response to this walking the west highland way in 4 days, Bank of America stock dropped %.
In DecemberBank of America announced that it would no longer service requests to transfer funds to WikiLeaks, stating that "Bank of America joins in the actions previously announced by MasterCard, PayPal, Visa Europe and others and will not process transactions of any type that we have reason to believe are intended for WikiLeaks This decision is based upon our reasonable belief that WikiLeaks may be engaged in activities that are, among other things, inconsistent with our internal policies for processing payments."
Later in December, it was announced that Bank of America purchased more than Internet domain names in an attempt to preempt bad publicity that might be forthcoming in the anticipated WikiLeaks release. 1st grade math curriculum homeschool domain names included as mynewextsetup.us, mynewextsetup.us and similar names for other top executives of the bank.
Sometime before AugustWikiLeaks claimed that 5GB of Bank of America leaks was part of the deletion of over communications by Daniel Domscheit-Berg, a now ex-WikiLeaks volunteer.
Settled $ million lawsuit claiming involvement in kickbacks and inflating insurance costs forced on homeowners.
On March 14,members of hacker group Anonymous began releasing emails said to be from a former Bank of America employee. According to the group, the emails documented alleged "corruption and fraud". The source, identified publicly as Brian Penny, was a former LPI Specialist from Balboa Insurance, a firm which used to be owned by the bank, but was sold to Australian Reinsurance Company QBE.
On April 7,Bank of America and QBE settled a class-action lawsuit stemming from the leak for $ million.
"Repeatedly has deceived" Mortgagors, and Then "impeding" Investigation - said State of Arizona
In the state of Arizona launched an investigation into Bank of America for misleading homeowners who sought to bank of america tech support their mortgage loans. According to the attorney general of Arizona, the bank "repeatedly has deceived" such mortgagors. In response to the investigation, the bank has given some modifications on the condition that the homeowners remove some information criticizing the bank online.
Investment in coal mining
On May 6,Bank of America announced it would reduce its financial exposure to coal companies. The announcement came following pressure from universities and environmental groups. The new policy was announced as part of the bank's decision to continue to reduce credit exposure over time to the coal mining sector.
Bank of America's major competitors are Wells Fargo, Santander, PNC Financial Services, Ally Financial, Capital One, Chase Bank, US Bank, Citizens First citizens bank main street columbia sc Group, Citigroup and M&T Bank.
Notable buildings which Bank of America currently occupies include:
- Bank of America Tower in Phoenix, Arizona
- Bank of America Center in Los Angeles, California
- Transamerica Pyramid, in San Francisco
- California Street, formerly the Bank of America Center and world headquarters, in San Francisco, California
- Bank of America Plaza in Fort Lauderdale, Florida
- Bank of America Tower in Jacksonville, Florida
- Bank of America Financial Center (Brickell) and Bank of America Museum Tower (Downtown Miami) in Miami, Florida
- Bank of America Center in Orlando, Florida
- Bank of America Tower in St. Petersburg, Florida
- Bank of America Plaza in Tampa, Florida
- Bank meghan edmonds net worth America Plaza in Atlanta, Georgia
- Bank of America Building, formerly the LaSalle Bank Building in Chicago, Illinois
- One City Center, often called the Bank of America building due to signage rights, in Portland, Maine
- Bank of America Building in Baltimore, Maryland
- Bank of America Plaza in St Louis, Missouri
- Bank of America Tower in Albuquerque, New Mexico
- Bank of America Tower in New York City
- Bank of America Corporate Center in Charlotte, North Carolina (the corporate headquarters)
- Bank of America Plaza in Charlotte, North Carolina
- Bank of America Tower in Charlotte, North Carolina
- Hearst Tower in Charlotte, North Carolina
- Bank of America Plaza in Dallas, Texas
- Bank of America Tower in Midland, Texas
- Bank of America Plaza in San Antonio, Texas
- Bank of America Fifth Avenue Plaza in Seattle, Washington
- Columbia Center in Seattle, Washington
- Bank of America Tower in Hong Kong
- City Place I, also known as United Healthcare Center, in Hartford, Connecticut (the tallest building in Connecticut)
- Wilshire Boulevard in Beverly Hills, California
The Robert B. Atwood Building in Anchorage, Alaska, was at one time named the Bank of America Center, renamed in conjunction with the bank's acquisition of building tenant Security Pacific Bank. This particular branch was later acquired by Alaska-based Northrim Bank and moved across the street to the Linny Pacillo Parking Garage.
The Bank of America Building (Providence) opened in as the Industrial Trust Building and remains the tallest building in Rhode Island. Through a number of mergers it was later known as the Industrial National Bank building and the Fleet Bank building. The building was leased by Bank of America from to and has been vacant since March The building is commonly known as the Superman Building based on a popular belief that it was the model for the Daily Planet building in the Superman comic books.
The Miami Tower iconic in its appearance in Miami Vice was known as the Bank of America Tower for many years. It is located in Downtown Miami. On April 18,the AIA's Florida Chapter placed it on its list of Florida Architecture: Years. Places as the Bank of America Tower.
TC Energy Center in Houston, Texas, was previously known as Bank of America Center until Bank of America ended its tenancy in the building in June Designed in the postmodern architecture style by renowned architect Philip Johnson, the building has been one of the most iconic and recognizable landmarks of the downtown Houston skyline since it was completed in 
- ^ abcdefghijkl"Bank of America Corporation Annual Report (Form K)"(PDF). mynewextsetup.us. U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. February Archived from the original on March 3, Retrieved April 2,
- ^" Proxy Statement – Bank of America Corporation". Bank of America. Retrieved December 21,
- ^"Warren Buffett pumps another $ million into Bank of America, boosting his stock purchases to $ billion in 8 days. This move by Buffett came right before the Ripple partnership announcement". Markets Insider. Retrieved July 28,
- ^ONeil, Erin (August 2, ). "The Biggest Banks in the United States". The Balance.
- ^"Who Made America? – Innovators – A.P. Giannini". mynewextsetup.us Archived from the original on January 7, Retrieved December 17,
- ^ abCohan, William D. (September ), "An offer he couldn't refuse", The Atlantic
- ^Team, Trefis (June 14, ). "Five Largest U.S. Investment Banks Have Over $ Trillion In Securities Trading Assets". Forbes. Archived from the original on August 19, Retrieved August 17,
- ^Shelby-Green, Michael (June 11, ). "The 15 biggest wealth managers in the world". Business Insider. Archived from the original on August 19, Retrieved August 11,
- ^B of A has operations (for example, Merrill Lynch offices), but no retail branches in Alabama, Alaska, Hawaii, Louisiana, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, Vermont, West Virginia, Wisconsin, or Wyoming. Bank of America Branches and ATMsArchived July 1,at the Wayback Machine. Click "Browse locations by state." © Bank of America Corporation. Retrieved June 30,
- ^"Bank of America on the Forbes Global List". Forbes. Archived from the original on July 28, Retrieved August 11,
- ^"Fortune Companies Who Made the List". Fortune. Archived from the original on November 10, Retrieved January 2,
- ^"World's best bank Bank of America". Euromoney. July 11, Archived from the original on August 19, Retrieved August 10,
- ^ ab"Bank of America Special to USA TODAY
My year old mom is an incredibly tech-savvy senior who commands her gadgets more like a Millennial than someone born the same year the ballpoint pen was invented. She also has an array of built-in tech support experts all around her – including me – her own daughter!
Still, when a giant yellow “alert” covered half of her MacBook Pro screen a few weeks ago, warning her that hackers had taken control of her device and to call the “Apple Support” number on the screen immediately or elseshe did just that. But the real danger wasn’t a virus on her computer, it was the man who answered on the other end of the phone.
A new version of the old tech support scam
“I’m so embarrassed,” she tells me through tears. “There was a cursor running amok on my screen. I tried to grab it, and when I couldn’t, I figured since it was happening on a Mac, it was real. I called the number on the screen, a man answered, “Apple Support,” she pauses and her voice cracks again. “You know, these people are very good at what they do.”
My mom lost $2, and even though she reported it to her bank right away, she’s been told there’s nothing they can do (more on this below). She feels horrible about it. I keep telling her not to feel bad. She’s the victim of the most successful online fraud against seniors in America today – a new version of the “tech support” scam – that’s bilked people out of billions of dollars for bank of america tech support last several years.
Social media: Facebook's new tool lets users control what they see, share on their News Feeds
Beware this scam: Roku setup, activation scam doesn't include cold calls, bogus links
What’s new is how scammers are targeting more people over the age of 60 online than by phone, according to an October report from the Federal Trade Commission. This coincides with the pandemic and more people of all ages spending more time in the digital world. The FTC also reports fraud losses totaled $ million through the third quarter union savings bank mt washingtona number that’s up 23% from
It’s gotten so bad, Microsoft and Apple now warn people about various iterations of this scam on their websites. The FTC, FBI, and AARP are also trying to get the word out about it. But cyber swindler tricks are evolving and becoming more convincing every day.
“If this is cc and bb cream meaning first encounter with this type of sociopathology, the most dangerous thing you can do is think you’re too smart to fall for it,” warns Bob Sullivan, consumer security expert, and host of AARP’s Perfect Scam podcast. “They’re really good at these quick emotional flips and putting you in a panic state very quickly. That’s when you’re ripe for the taking.”
How it works
The scammers might call you directly on a landline or cellphone, or send bank of america tech support phony email, text message, calendar invite, or even direct message via social media. They may “spoof” the phone number so that it looks like a legitimate call from a trusted company, or from someone in your own area code.
In my moms' case, the crooks initiated contact by using a scam pop-up ad via her Chrome browser. It warned that her device was compromised, hackers were controlling it, and to call the number on the screen or risk losing everything on the laptop, including her identity, passwords, and even access to her bank accounts.
Fake pop-up ads are fairly common – many of us have seen that scam “prize alert” message at least once in our connected lives. It most often happens if you click on a dodgy website by mistyping a URL or following a nefarious link from a spam message.
No matter how the thieves deliver the threat, the immediate result is often the same. “You panic, and want to fix it,” Sullivan explains. “If you call the number you get a really nice voice on the other end, reiterating what grave danger you’re in, but that they will, in essence, keep you from the real harm.”
Once they get you on the phone, the real hustle begins. The scammer says he’s a certified Apple (or Microsoft, or any other well-known company) technician, and offers to give you his certification number. The talk is fast, smooth, and the crook has an answer for everything.
“You asked a lot of good questions and at every turn, they were ready with what seemed like a sensible answer, Sullivan tells my mother directly over Zoom. “And that’s because they have practiced this, they’re running dozens of these every single day.”
The fake technician might ask you to download an app that allows them to “run a diagnostic test.” Then they pretend to spot all kinds of horrible hacks, and either offer to fix it, maybe for a price, or download more software – which likely infects your machine with malware for real.
“He told me to download TeamViewer from (Apple’s) App Store, and that it would let him see my desktop, but not take control of it,” my mother recalled. “Then he said ‘we’re going to do some testing on your bank accounts to make sure they’re secure. We’re going to transfer some money from your savings to your checking. When that worked, he said I should transfer money to the official technician account through Zelle, which I had never heard of. But he explained that it’s part bank of america tech support my bank, and fraud protected just like my bank accounts and credit cards, and not to worry because it would go out and come right back in. He also said all of this service was ‘free’ from Apple.”
This is the part of the story where I national bank of commerce phone number my head down on my desk and groan out loud, “Mom, why did you think this was real? Why didn’t you call me?”
“I trust Apple. I trust my [(USAA) bank, and because Zelle was right there on the USAA site, I trusted that, too.” The scammer did take money out of her account and put it all (she thought) right back in. He then sent her off on a wild goose chase to buy Target gift cards for some other convoluted diagnostic test, and that’s when she finally called me – five hours after first responding to the alert on her laptop.
By then a blaring alarm was going off on her laptop and she didn’t think she could turn it off. “Just shut the lid,” I said. Of course, that made the horrible siren noise stop, but she’s far from over the entire ordeal.
You have been scammed. Now what?
The first thing I had my mom do was contact USAA and report the fraud. Then, block the swindlers' phone number.
Scammers are relentless. They kept calling back after my mom hung up, so it’s important to block the calls, and not answer any more from numbers she doesn’t recognize. (If it’s legitimate, people leave a message.)
I also had her change all of her passwords, tarrant county juvenile probation officer jobs the scam to several authorities including the FTC and FBI, back up her files, and do a full reset and restore of her MacBook, iPhone, and iPad.
Some people suggest running additional anti-virus software, too. “You can make an appointment at an Apple Store or contact Apple Support online, tell homes for sale in natomas sacramento ca what happened, and see if there are any additional precautions they suggest,” Sullivan said.
The next day, while monitoring her bank accounts, she saw that three of the five Zelle money transfers were returned. But $2, is still missing.
USAA told her there is nothing they could do because she had authorized the transactions through Zelle. She contacted Zelle, and they too told her she won’t get her money back.
“We caution consumers in all of our marketing and consumer education,” says Meghan Fintland, a spokesperson for Zelle we contacted for this story. “Zelle is only to be used to pay people you know and trust. Use it like you would cash because once you send the money, it is gone in minutes and you can't get it back.”
“I am the head of Fraud and Central Operations for USAA Bank, and my parents have fallen victim,” Stacey Nash, SVP, Bank Fraud Management, and Operations wrote to me via email. “Elder financial abuse is something we train to detect and do awareness campaigns to prevent. It can happen to anyone, but it’s particularly disheartening when it’s your elderly family member."
“It’s my fault for being too trusting I guess,” my mom says. “Maybe it’s a generational thing. I don’t know. I’m sure $2, doesn’t seem like a lot of money to some people, but it’s a lot for us. I just hope sharing this keeps someone else from getting scammed.”
How to keep from getting scammed
Apple and Microsoft walk you through the do’s and don’ts of this tech support scam and other popular frauds on their sites. AARP offers a class in spotting scams and has a whole webpage warning people of the dangers. The best advice includes:
- Apple, Microsoft, and other reputable tech companies do not contact customers about “tech support,” unless the customer initiates communication – period.
- If a pop-up or error message appears with a phone number, don’t call the bank of america tech support. Error and warning messages never include phone numbers.
- If you get a tech support scam pop-up, close the browser. On a Windows PC, press Control-Alt-Delete to bring up the Task Manager. On a Mac, click on the Apple icon in the upper left corner of your screen and use the Force Quit command.
- Never pay for tech support or other services with a money transfer app, gift card, cash reload card, farmers state bank cedar rapids wire transfer.
- If you get a call, don’t answer. If you answer, hang up, and block the call. Once scammers know they reached a working number, you become a recurring target. One of the most common scams after you engage with cyber-crooks over fraudulent service – is the “refund scam.”
- Never trust any company – tech or otherwise – requesting personal or financial information.
- Keep your security software, browser, and operating system up to date, and consider using your browser’s pop-up blocker.
Last, but not least, remember when we were taught to stop, drop, and roll, if our clothes catch on fire? Sullivan says it’s a great rule of thumb to keep from getting burned by modern scams, too. “Whenever you’re in one of those moments where you think, ‘Oh my God, something terrible might be happening,’ stop what you’re doing. Drop the mouse, and roll your chair away from the desk.”
Then, call someone you trust. Like your daughter.
Jennifer Jolly is an Emmy Award-winning consumer tech columnist and host of USA TODAY's digital video show TECHNOW. Email her at [email protected] Follow her on Twitter: @JenniferJolly.
The views and opinions expressed in this column are the author’s aps pay my bill do not necessarily reflect those of USA TODAY.