Store employees thwart identity thief
A man suspected of using stolen credit cards and personal checks to make purchases from a Northern California Home Depot was arrested after sales associates noticed a variety of credit card orders were being shipped to the same residence, according to an article in the San Francisco Chronicle.
Richard Griffin, age 42, allegedly bought equipment from a Home Depot in San Rafael using credit card account info stolen from victims in Tiburon, San Rafael and Pleasanton, as well as checks from a person in Novato.
The suspect made the orders by phone, sometimes saying that a different person besides the cardholder would pick up the merchandise, according to authorities. Griffin also requested the items be delivered to a home in Richmond, investigators said. He allegedly racked up more than $25,000 in purchases.
Sales associates at Home Depot notified police after they noticed that all the calls came from the same phone number and the purchases were being delivered to the same address.
A seven-month investigation ensued. The Northern California Computer Crimes Task Force arrested Griffin just before Christmas and found him in possession of a fake California driver’s license and 10 stolen credit cards, according to authorities.
Griffin is being held at the Marin County Jail in lieu of $300,000 bail.
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Lowe’s and Uncle Sam enter a GSA contract
Mooresville, N.C.-based Lowe’s announced it has received a General Services Administration (GSA) Schedule contract, giving discounts to federal buyers and other eligible agencies.
“Through our new GSA contract, Lowe’s can better meet the needs of our federal agency customers,” said Mike Horn, Lowe’s VP commercial sales. “Lowe’s is now able to provide more competitive prices to government customers, while also providing an easy and fast way for those customers to get the products they need.”
The contract took effect Jan. 1.
In all Lowe’s stores, the Commercial Sales Desk will serve as the primary point of contact for all GSA customers, the retailer said. The GSA schedule discount is good in all U.S. stores for the purchase of all Trade Agreements Act (TAA) compliant in-stock or special order merchandise. It is not valid on sales via Lowes.com, purchase of services or gift cards.
I have learned that the GSA
I have learned that the GSA Contract with Lowes has a clause that Lowes cannot give discounts lower that GSA which is 5%. Veterans were given 10% but now has been lowed to 5%. The contract has degraded again another benefits for Veterans. I cannot believe that this was the intent of GSA or Lowes. I believe the legal department with GSA should take a closer look at this contract and restore the 10% benefit originally offered. The Best Medal is a Live Man's Smile, Copyright H.Lee Bell
Pennsylvania embraces HELP
With the clever initials HELP, a program from the state of Pennsylvania has been launched to help homeowners get loans for home energy efficiency projects.
The Keystone Home Energy Loan Program (HELP) helps qualified Pennsylvania homeowners take advantage of lower-rate, fixed-term loans for whole home energy efficiency projects.
"Keystone HELP is a national model for sustainable lending to retrofit existing homes with efficient equipment," Pennsylvania Treasurer Rob McCord said. "We are adding this new financing option to an existing suite of loans to save homeowners money, conserve energy, and create demand for green-certified installers and manufacturers."
The new Conservation Audit and Performance Protocol (CAPP) Loans can be used for qualifying activities such as insulation and air sealing, as well as other Energy Star improvements involving heating and cooling equipment. Unsecured loans up to $15,000 are available under CAPP for three-, five- or 10-year terms at an interest rate of 2.99%, the lowest rate HELP has ever offered for unsecured loans.
"The more we can do to encourage affordable energy efficiency, the closer we get to the world we all want — clean and less reliant on foreign and carbon-emitting energy sources," McCord added.
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