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Authorities investigating bank fraud of $315,000 at UW-Parkside; 'phishing' scam blamed

UW-Parkside logo

UW-Parkside logo

SOMERS — The University of Wisconsin-Parkside, along with federal authorities, are investigating what is being reported as bank fraud of more than $300,000 against the institution, university system officials said Thursday.

Mark Pitsch, UW System spokesman, said in an e-mail to the Kenosha News thatlosses totaled approximately $315,000.

Pitsch said some of the losses were recovered and insurance is “expected to cover much of the rest.”

He said the net loss to Parkside will be about $65,000.

“The UW System is actively working with law enforcement authorities,” he said. Parkside police investigating the crime have notified the FBI and the Internal Revenue Service.

According to Pitsch, the fraud was discovered when UW-Parkside was notified by a bank on June 19 of an issue involving a new account.

"A bank that was receiving electronic payments from the UW System flagged the transfer because of the newness of the receiving account and the type of payments," he said. "This situation resulted from a 'phishing' scam in which an employee changed bank account routing numbers for two UW System vendors."

The fraud involved only financial accounts and no student information was compromised, he said.

When asked whether an arrest had been made, Pitsch said the university system does not discuss ongoing investigations.

Parkside officials could not be reached for comment despite multiple requests.

The Kenosha County Sheriff's Department said it had no report on this.

This story is being updated as new information is obtained.


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