AntiOnline Spotlight: ID Thieves Rake in a Half Billion DollarsBy Enterprise IT Planet Staff
February 3, 2005
Granted, most theft occurred using traditional methods such as dumpster diving, snail mail interception or the occasional crooked worker that photocopies a loan or employment application. But the Internet is also proving an irresistible lure for fraudsters that don't like to get their hands dirty and have an aversion towards getting caught.
Like spyware, and e-mail worms before that, the general public is finally starting to get wise to the threat of phishing and other online schemes. Protecting yourself, online and off, takes a multifaceted approach that may involve some technology, but mainly relies on some common sense.
For instance, while shredding credit card statements may thwart the neighborhood trash picker, blindly clicking links embedded in a seemingly official bank email can expose your accounts in faster and potentially devastating ways.
In this week's spotlight thread, AO members discuss the state of online security, the dangers to users and businesses and whether the Internet will help push that figure up past $600 million for '05.
Note: The opinions expressed below are solely those of the individual posters on the AntiOnline forums.
This Week's Spotlight Thread:
zencoder points the crew to a sobering story. The headline says it all:
FTC: At least $548 million lost to identity theftServes victims right for being so lax! MsMittens begs to differ...
How so? They are misled to believe something when it's not true (e.g., they are selling something on eBay, someone wins the auction, sends a cashier's check for the full amount, they send the product and then the cashier's check bounces).No need to cloak online scammers with an aura of "cyber" sophistication. Und3ertak3r calls them what they are: con artists.
The Confidence trickster (a.k.a. con artist, etc.) uses many tools to ply his (or her) trade. These tools can be material (as in electronic) including the telephone and Internet, or human, including themselves and the victim's friends and acquaintances.Why are people falling for it? Could greed play a part? Newbie member Capnjs has a story to tell...
Several years ago, someone falsely used my auction identity to post several high priced items for sale on an auction site. I didn't realize it had happened until I received a call in the middle of the night (2 am) from someone wondering where his $5,000 LCD projector was. Of course I had no idea what he was talking about (especially at 2 am). Finally he said "I bought an LCD projector from you on an auction site and you asked me to send the check proceeds to your family in Romania and I haven't received the projector yet."Discuss the current state of phishing and online fraud here.
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