Verizon Wireless Takes Aggressive Legal Action to Stop Attempted Theft of Customer Information by Florida Firm Lawsuit Says Group Fraudulently Sought Customer Account Information Without

Proper Authorization



    TAMPA, Fla., Nov. 9 /PRNewswire/ -- Verizon Wireless has filed suit and
 obtained an immediate injunction against a Florida-based private investigative
 agency and its affiliates to stop their attempts to fraudulently obtain
 confidential information about Verizon Wireless customers.
     The civil suit, filed November 2 in Hillsborough County, FL, charges that
 Global Information Group (GIG) of Temple Terrace, FL, made "thousands of
 attempts" to gather confidential information without proper authorization and
 used various fraudulent "schemes" to do so, including impersonating Verizon
 Wireless employees and posing as Verizon Wireless customers.
     On November 2, the court issued an immediate temporary restraining order,
 prohibiting the defendants from any further attempts to obtain confidential
 information from Verizon Wireless, any further contact with Verizon Wireless
 customer service centers, or providing any confidential customer information
 to third parties.  Verizon Wireless also obtained an order from the court
 entitling it to seize any information the defendants may have gathered.
 Hillsborough County Sheriff's deputies executed the order Monday afternoon.
     "Verizon Wireless will use all the weapons in our legal arsenal to protect
 our customers' private and confidential information," said Steven Zipperstein,
 General Counsel and Vice President of Legal and External Affairs for Verizon
 Wireless. "We simply will not tolerate fraudulent schemes that prey on our
 company and our customers.  We are very grateful to the Hillsborough County
 Sheriff's Office for their invaluable assistance in enforcing the court's
 seizure order."
     Verizon Wireless' aggressive and innovative record of protecting customer
 privacy is unmatched in the U.S. wireless industry.  This summer, Verizon
 Wireless secured a court order to halt a Tennessee-based company's illegal
 practice of using fraudulent means to obtain and sell confidential customer
 telephone records.  The company also obtained injunctions against
 telemarketing firms based in Florida and California this summer, halting them
 from making illegal sales calls to its customers.
 
     About Verizon Wireless
     Verizon Wireless owns and operates the nation's most reliable wireless
 network, serving 49.3 million voice and data customers.  Headquartered in
 Bedminster, NJ, Verizon Wireless is a joint venture of Verizon Communications
 (NYSE:   VZ) and Vodafone (NYSE and LSE: VOD).  Find more information on the Web
 at http://www.verizonwireless.com. To preview and request broadcast-quality
 video footage and high-resolution stills of Verizon Wireless operations, log
 on to the Verizon Wireless Multimedia Library at
 http://www.verizonwireless.com/multimedia.
 
 

SOURCE Verizon Wireless
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