Commissioner of Securities and Insurance (CSI) Seeking to Help VBIT Crypto-Mining Scam Victims

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Montanans who invested in VBit Technologies, Advanced Mining, VBit Mining, and VBit DC Corp (collectively referred to as VBit) cryptocurrency-mining machines are asked to contact the Montana Commissioner of Securities and Insurance (CSI) by July 8, 2024. As early as 2021, VBit began marketing to and contracting with Montanans for the sale … Read more

In Gallatin County, Four Men Charged with Engaging in Conspiracy to Defraud Investors, Farmers, and the State of Montana

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE The Commissioner of Securities Insurance (CSI) and Gallatin County Attorney charged four men with engaging in a conspiracy to defraud investors, farmers, and the State of Montana through various means, including a Ponzi scheme.  “As the Gallatin County Attorney, I want to thank Commissioner Downing for his diligent efforts investigating fraud within … Read more

Belgrade Plumber Receives Suspended Prison Sentence for Insurance Fraud to Begin House Arrest

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Helena, Montana – A CSI investigation revealed that in January 2022, Mr. Dennis Hurlbert, owner of Belgrade Plumbing and Heating, presented a Certificate of Liability Insurance to a would-be employer. The certificate indicated Mr. Hurlbert had effective general liability, automobile liability, and workers’ compensation insurance. The certificate was a falsified document, confirmed … Read more

CARB’s Clean Air Act Authorization Request

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Hon. Michael S. Regan, AdministratorU.S. Environmental Protection Agency1200 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW; 1101-AWashington, D.C. 20460 Re: CARB’s Clean Air Act Authorization Request [Docket ID Number: EPA-HQ-OAR-2023-0574] Dear Administrator Regan:I am writing to request that the EPA reject the above authorization request, which would permit the California Air Resources Board (CARB) to circumvent federal … Read more

State presents tools to help protect people from scams

A presentation at the Thompson Falls Senior Center last week educated citizens on how to be aware of potential scams and fraud. Presenters Blair Stapleton and Drew Czoik from the state Commissioner of Securities and Insurance Office traveled from Helena to Thompson Falls to inform the audience of potential fraud and scams via the internet … Read more

Fraud schemes target older Montanans

By SCOTT SHINDLEDECKERThe Western News Click HERE to view the article.  The numbers are staggering and the effects are long lasting. Fraud seems to be everywhere and its perpetrators are relentless. The victims of fraud fall into no particular category, age or educational background, but those over the age of 60 are most vulnerable. Officials with … Read more

1st Security President Talks Scams

By Luke Ulatowski First Security Bank of Deer Lodge President Tom Christnacht warned of bank and social media scams as the guest speaker at a Montana Commissioner of Securities and Insurance (CSI) “Protecting the Big Sky” presentation on Thursday. Held at the Powell County Community Center, the presentation was only one stop on a CSI … Read more

State works to educate public about rising threat of cybercrime across Montana

By Bryanna Carroll  |  NBC Montana BOZEMAN, Mont. — The FBI reports cybercrimes are up 62% from 2019 levels, and since then, losses from internet scams have more than tripled, coming in at $12.5 billion last year. Montana is not immune to the threat. In 2023, the state ranked No. 7 nationwide for highest losses per … Read more

Fool’s Gold! The Montana Precious Metals Scam

“Mr. and Mrs. Allen, my name is Trevor and I have been authorized to give you a special offer.  Our firm, SilverCert, has just acquired a cache of uncirculated gold coins from an estate near Morocco.  These finely minted coins date from the 1920s and each with a troy ounce of pure gold.  While we … Read more