FBI Says Citibank Gave Billionaire Paul Allen’s Debit Card to ID Thief

Paul Allen in his Microsoft days with Bill Gates.

Paul Allen in his Microsoft days with Bill Gates.

David Kravets reports at WIRED’s Threat Level:

An alleged Army deserter is being charged with bank fraud in connection to the socially engineered hijacking of Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen’s debit card.

In a complaint unsealed Monday, federal authorities allege Brandon Price, of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, obtained the billionaire’s debit card from Citibank via a telephone call to the bank’s customer service bureau in January. At Price’s request, the bank changed Allen’s address to Price’s Pittsburgh house, and overnighted him the card.

“An individual identifying himself as Paul Allen called the customer service department of Citibank. The caller stated that he had misplaced his debit card at his residence, but did not want to report it stolen. The individual then successfully ordered a new debit card on the account of Paul Allen and had it sent via UPS,” FBI agent Joseph J. Ondercin said (.pdf) in a legal filing.

Allen is valued at more than $14 billion. He left Microsoft in 1983, and now owns the Seattle Seahawks and Portland Trailblazers.

Read More: WIRED’s Threat Level

  • Haystack

    I’m less surprised that he got it than that he was dumb enough to have it mailed to his home address. 

  • Nunzio X

    I bet Paul Allen has at least $10,000 in the bank.

  • DavidY

    When  I saw the headline — I immediately thought obama had gotten a hold of Allen’s card.  Hey, don’t laugh, the scum-sucking slimeball has gotten away with everything else ……