HENRICO COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — Nearly two months after a Henrico County woman was scammed out of approximately $7,500, she continues her fight to have that money returned.
8News first spoke with Robin Loyall in March. She had received a call from a number with an 804 area code, which she said showed the caller ID to be Verizon. Given that Verizon was her actual provider, she answered.
“The man sounded very professional,” Loyall said back in March. “The gentleman on the line told me that my computer had gone active and that anybody and everybody could get access to anything on my computer, and they needed to fix it. I just needed to log on to my computer so that they could fix it. So I did that.”
Loyall told 8News that she was in the middle of another crisis at home when the call came in; her horse had gotten out of its fence. Loyall, a widow, is in a wheelchair and had to contact animal control to retrieve the animal before it got too far. By the time she returned to her computer, she realized that she no longer had access. And when she went to her phone, a similar issue appeared to have happened to her landline.
Records show that thousands of dollars were transferred during this time out of Loyall’s accounts to individuals in Ecuador and India. Hoping to get some of her money back, Loyall said she immediately filed a claim with Bank of America.
“I immediately called Bank of America,” she said. “Monday morning, 48 hours later, I was at the door of Bank of America at 8 a.m., waiting to get in to close my old accounts and open new ones.”
By March 22, Loyall had received a Scam Victim Acknowledgment letter from her bank, which stated that she needed to sign the document in order to have her funds recovered. However, Loyall refused to sign, arguing that the notice was “full of lies and incorrect information.”
The Bank of America letter stated that Loyall transferred funds from her accounts with the company to a third party as the result of a scam. But she disputed that statement, as Loyall maintained that it was not actually her who transferred the money.
“These hackers, from what police have told me, they’re going around like crazy. They’re getting four, five, six calls a day with these hackers stealing people’s money, doing the same thing,” she said. “These people are very, very good and very tech-savvy as to what they’re doing.”
On paper, it may appear that Loyall was the one who wire-transferred money. She told 8News that her bank also said someone from the company had called her to confirm the transfer by asking a series of authorizing questions. But Loyall claimed she never received a call, as her phone and internet did not function for three days following this hacking attempt.
“It’s just unbelievable because I wouldn’t do that,” she said. “They’re blaming me and putting it on me, saying I was one of the scammers stealing money from the bank, when, in fact, they stole — these hackers hacked into my computer and therefore got into my bank account.”
8News was in touch with Bank of America after first speaking with Loyall back in March. They were unable to provide specific details about her case, citing the need for consumer privacy and confidentiality. However, they did note that it is unfortunate when people fall for scams like this and that they were following up with Loyall directly.
On April 7, Loyall received another notice from Bank of America. It stated that the company had completed its research of her fraud claim and that the bank would be “unable to honor the claim.”
In response, Loyall said that she filed a complaint with the FDIC, and even reached out to the Office of the Attorney General (OAG).
On April 13, Loyall received a letter from Bank of America in response to her complaint. The notice introduced her to a Resolution Specialist to help address the issue. But since receiving the letter, Loyall said she hadn’t heard anything from her bank.
On Monday, she received a letter from the OAG, advising her to contact the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and the FBI. Loyall also called Regulatory Complaints of Bank of America on Monday, but her call went to voicemail.
“I’m still fighting,” Loyall told 8News. “I’m going to continue to fight to get my money back because I didn’t do anything wrong. I didn’t. I’m sorry.”