Morgan Stanley says wealth management employee stole client data

Mon Jan 5, 2015 7:04pm EST
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By Lauren Tara LaCapra and Tanya Agrawal

(Reuters) - Morgan Stanley (MS.N: Quote) said on Monday it had fired a financial adviser who allegedly stole account information from about 350,000 of its wealth management clients and posted some of it online.

There is no evidence that clients lost money as a result of the latest breach of customer information at a financial firm, Morgan Stanley said in a statement.

A person familiar with the matter identified the former employee as Galen Marsh, a 30-year-old financial adviser from one of Morgan Stanley's New York branches.

Marsh appeared to be looking to sell the data, which pertained to about 10 percent of Morgan Stanley's 3.5 million clients, the person said. He published information on about 900 accounts as an apparent advertisement, the person said.

Robert Gottlieb, who is representing Marsh with the law firm Gottlieb & Gordon, denied that his client posted the information online or tried to sell it. He also said Marsh is "devastated by what has occurred and is extremely sorry for his conduct."

"This is an employment matter between Mr. Marsh and Morgan Stanley," Gottlieb said. "He has acknowledged that he should not have obtained the account information and he has been cooperating fully with Morgan Stanley to protect the firm and its customers."

The bank discovered the post as part of a routine Internet sweep on Dec. 27 and quickly got the information taken down, said the person, who was not authorized to speak publicly about the matter.

Marsh did not immediately return phone calls or messages seeking comment. He joined Morgan Stanley in April 2008 as a sales assistant, entered its trainee program in 2010 and became a financial adviser in March 2014.   Continued...

The corporate logo of financial firm Morgan Stanley is pictured on a building in San Diego, California September 24, 2013. REUTERS/Mike Blake