Call Kurtis Investigates: Congressman Wants Hearing After CBS13 Exposes Mail Forwarding Flaws

SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — The US Postal Inspector’s Office’s response to a Call Kurtis investigation on how easy it is for a scammer to re-route your mail isn’t sitting well with a local Congressman.

Rep. Jerry McNerney (D-Stockton) is not happy with the Postal Inspector’s response to the inquiry and is calling for a hearing on Capitol Hill.

Call Kurtis investigation in November revealed how easy it was to re-route someone else’s mail. We filled out a form with a producer’s information, changed her address to the CBS13 station, and days later the mail started coming here.

McNerney didn’t like what we uncovered and demanded answers in November, sending this letter to the Postal Inspector.

Five months later, we questioned the Postal Inspector’s Office for not responding to McNerney‘s letter. The day after we called USPIS, McNerney received a response from the Postal Inspector, where the postal inspector claims it does “assess opportunities to improve security measures based on the fraud trends” but gave no answers on what’s been done to solve this problem.

McNerney thinks the American people deserve a better answer and is calling for a federal oversight hearing. He sent this response to us on Tuesday regarding the letter from the US Postal Inspection Service:

I’m disappointed that the United States Postal Inspection Service’s response failed to include specific proactive measures being considered in its collaboration with the United States Postal Service to decrease the frequency of these crimes. While I understand the need to ensure accessibility and ease, my constituents and the hundreds of others who have been the victims of this lapse in security deserve concrete solutions to assure them this issue is being addressed.

As technology advances and we can improve the ease of these services for customers, the Postal Service must also improve security practices to ensure customers can utilize these services without the fear of a potential criminal threat.

I have sent a letter to the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform requesting a hearing to further investigate this matter because I believe that congressional review is necessary.

We reached out to USPIS for comment on the Congressman’s request to the oversight committee and got this response:

I want to reiterate our earlier restatement: “The U.S. Postal Service considers the security and sanctity of mail as one of its highest priorities. We continue to assess enhanced security options, as we determine the best alternatives to protect the needs of consumers.”

To your question regarding the congressman’s hearing, I refer you back to the congressman.

Our investigation started last year we were contacted by Frank and Rebeca Ronquillo of Sacramento after someone forwarded mail without their permission. The bad guys ended up with Frank’s Social Security number and his blood pressure medicine.

We tested to see how easy it was to reroute someone’s mail and found out that all the bad guys have to do is fill out a form and drop it in the mailbox.

We brought the results of our test to Jeff Fitch with the US Postal Inspector’s Office back in the fall.
Fitch said in the interview, “That’s something again we’ll have to look at.”

Then we brought our findings to McNerney.

After showing him the flaw in the postal system and how easy it was to reroute someone’s mail McNerney said, “That should not be the case. It should never have been the case.”

For Rebecca and Frank Ronquillo, they hope something is done, because they blame the postal service for them having to watch their credit, for the rest of their lives.

Rebecca says, “They need to do a better job protecting our mail.”

“Nobody’s safe. Nobody’s mail’s safe.”

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Comments

One Comment

  1. Mail forwarding and address change requests should only be accepted:
    in-person, at a post office, with government-issued photo I.D.

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