Hacker swipes Lee County man’s airline miles, $120,000 from his bank

A Lee County man went to check his United Airlines Awards balance only to see 150,000 of his miles were gone! The crime does not stop there. Crooks also stole more than $120,000 out of his checking account.

Mary Vincenti and Beth Janus use airline miles to get more bang for their buck. Right now, they have around 50,000.

Even though it is not an answer everyone knows on the spot, some like Bobby Moffa, who travels back and forth frequently for business on Fort Myers Beach, said he could not imagine life without his airline miles.

”That would be very expensive for me,” Moffa said.

One man’s airline miles landed him in a financial mess after someone hacked into his account with United Airlines, stealing 150,000 from him. The man’s report with the Lee County Sheriff’s Office said the hacker used those airline miles to redeem gift cards.

The thieves hacked, then added a forwarding email address to his account.

Later on, the man discovered he was blocked out of his Chase Bank online account. There, he found a hefty transaction he never made, which totaled $120,000.

Rich Kolko, WINK News safety and security specialist, advises people to change their passwords periodically. Also, to keep boarding pass information hidden.

We reached out to United Airlines. They said it would take some time to look into whether the man will get back his miles.

”If they have a death somewhere or something or emergency and they got to fly and their miles are gone, they’re probably not going to go,” Moffa said. “That could be devastating for some.”

Reporter:Gina Tomlinson
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