Examples: [Collected via e-mail, February 2007]
Today, Bank of America announced they will be opening accounts for illegal immigrants to boost their revenue.
Get this! The illegals don't have to have a social security number, etc. Although, the rates will be higher than those who have a social security number, I believe it sends a message of it's alright to be an illegal in this United States. I object and will be closing my checking account today. Enough is enough. They need to do the right thing and become legal. My grandparents came to this country legally in 1914 and honored the United States by becoming citizens.
If you have an account at the Bank of America and believe as I do close your account then pass this
Origins: The 13 February 2007 disclosure that Bank of America (BofA), the largest retail banking chain in the U.S., had been testing a pilot program to provide credit cards to customers who may not have had Social Security numbers made it the target of criticism. While Bank of America asserted that the pilot program (originally tested at five Southern California branches in 2006, then expanded to
The program was open to Bank of America customers who may have lacked both Social Security numbers and credit histories but who had maintained overdraft-free checking accounts with the financial giant for three months. While it is not strictly true that Bank of America was offering to establish credit for "illegal aliens," critics said the difference amounted to hair-splitting because most U.S. adults who don't have Social Security numbers are illegal immigrants.
Bank of America asserted that its program complied with U.S. banking and anti-terrorism laws. Critics said such services would enable illegal immigrants to put down roots more
The Bank of America pilot credit cards carried a 21.24% interest rate and required payment of an upfront fee. The Wall Street Journal reported on one immigrant who had sneaked into the U.S. a decade ago, had been a customer of Bank of America for nine years, and had no credit history or Social Security number. He paid a $99 fee to obtain a
Among the banking community, BofA was not alone in pursuing this segment of the potential customer base. Citigroup had been offering similar credit cards for years, and in 2006, Wells Fargo began offering home mortgages in
Critics said that it's too easy for undocumented immigrants to receive ITINs: "At face value the program seems to be problematic," Russ Knocke, a spokesman for the Department of Homeland Security. "It seems to be lending itself to possibilities of perpetrating identity theft or creating more risk for money laundering."
Barbara "one ITIN soldier rides away" Mikkelson
Last updated: 22 May 2010
Augstums, Ieva M. "Credit Card Move Only Part of Bid to Woo Hispanics." Houston Chronicle. 5 March 2007. Calvey, Mark. "BofA's Credit Card Offer to Illegal Immigrants Spurs Backlash." San Francisco Business Times. 14 February 2007. Jordan, Miriam and Valerie Bauerlein. "Bank of America Casts Wider Net for Hispanics." The Wall Street Journal. 13 February 2007 (p. A1). Reckard, E. Scott. "Banking on Illegal Immigrants." Los Angeles Times. 14 February 2007 (p. A1).