Early in the morning the bank account password was changed. The investigation pointed to someone without authorization using my parent's phone at 1 am to verify a password change for the bank account which was then accessed. No money was taken or transferred. I assume all the account numbers were copied along with other account information. The local police chief said unauthorized access is not a crime. No money was taken or attempted to be taken so there is not a crime to report; he could note my call. I was surprised that unauthorized access is not a crime.

Is the information correct, that accessing someone's account by changing their password and accessing the account information is not a crime?

  • Contact the bank's fraud department and tell them about the password change. And please find out who is legally entitled to her account information and to the contents of her account.
    – gnasher729
    Commented Nov 30, 2022 at 1:26
  • This is not asking for legal advice and should not be closed on that basis. Commented Nov 30, 2022 at 1:32
  • 3
    Why are password change confirmations going to your mother's phone? You, as the person responsible, should have that changed to your phone so that this issue can be avoided.
    – jwh20
    Commented Nov 30, 2022 at 1:33
  • I did contact the fraud department and yes only my mother or I are entitled to her account information. The legal questions is if the described act is a crime. That is a good question as to why the password changes where going to her account. I have had that removed so it can't happen again. Still not sure if I agree that no crime was committed. That is what I'm asking. Is it a crime to change someone's password and access the bank account information without authorization?
    – POA
    Commented Nov 30, 2022 at 2:26
  • 1
    Even if it is technically a crime, that doesn't mean your local law enforcement or prosecutor are interested in messing with a family dispute, which is what this amounts to. Take the steps needed to secure the account and ensure that only authorized people have access and move on.
    – jwh20
    Commented Nov 30, 2022 at 2:50

1 Answer 1


It’s probably a crime

But you need to report it to the FBI because it’s a Federal crime.

If money had been taken it would be the state crime of fraud. However, mere access isn’t fraud.

It is unauthorized access to a protected computer in contravention of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act.

  • in California, gaining access to a bank account for later taking money, even with no damage at that time, is a special type of grand theft under California Penal Code as 484d declares any means of access (such as a pay site login) as an "access card", and 584e(a) makes getting that with intent and without allowance of the owner Grand Theft.
    – Trish
    Commented Nov 30, 2022 at 10:48
  • compare: law.stackexchange.com/q/82500/10334
    – Trish
    Commented Nov 30, 2022 at 10:55
  • many states have equivalent statutes.
    – Tiger Guy
    Commented Dec 1, 2022 at 6:29

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