Creative Commons License


Three More States Add Laws on Data Breaches

Companies struggling to keep up with a patchwork of state laws related to data privacy and information security have three more to contend with, as a result of new security-breach notification laws that went into effect in Illinois, Louisiana and New Jersey on Jan 1.

Computerworld

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on January 10, 2006 at 04:51 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Missing data recovered by ABN AMRO Mortgage

Some Bay Area ABN AMRO Mortgage customers this week are receiving the digital age's dreaded midnight knock on the door: A letter stating a data tape containing their Social Security numbers and other personal information had been lost by a courier.

from Merc News

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on January 10, 2006 at 04:38 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Update on Credit Freeze & Data Breach Laws

With the New Year almost upon us, a variety of new laws that impact identity theft and personal privacy will begin to go into effect. A variety of states are gearing up to implement new laws that allow consumers to freeze their credit files. Connecticut, New Jersey and Illinois will all implement this type of law on January 1, but these states have very different visions of who should be given the ability to freeze their credit report. See GuardMyCreditFile

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on December 17, 2005 at 01:30 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Worldwide Unisys ID Fraud Study Shows New U.S. Consumer Security Concerns

Half of Americans would switch banks for greater protection, and 40 percent willing to pay for more security compared to 27 percent last year; Banks need visibility into full impact of fraud to secure both brand and revenue.

BLUE BELL, Pa., November 11, 2005 – Americans are more willing to pay additional fees for greater protection of their bank accounts to assuage increasing fears, according to new research from Unisys Corporation (NYSE: UIS) that polled 1,000 Americans as part of a broader worldwide analysis of identity fraud and bank security issues.

www.unisys.com

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on November 23, 2005 at 09:07 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Portrait of an identity thief

Tina Kathreen Armstrong of Longview first made headlines in 1988 as Tina Lee, the HIV-positive teenage mother of a newborn daughter -- the first such birth in Cowlitz County and one of the first in Washington state.

from The Daily News

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on November 15, 2005 at 06:29 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Despite Increase In ID Theft, 70% of Canadians Think It's Unlikely They Will be Victimized

TORONTO - TransUnion, a leading authority on consumer credit, today released a survey conducted by Roper Public Affairs on how likely Canadians think they are to become victims of identity theft. Despite manifold evidence of increased identity theft, a full 70 percent think it is "somewhat" or "very" unlikely that they will be victimized.

"Identity thieves are no longer common criminals sifting through your garbage. The techniques used by today's identity thieves evolve so rapidly that even technologically sophisticated people and organizations are at risk of having their information stolen," said Mark Merritt, Vice President, Customer Solutions of TransUnion in Canada. "Canadians are becoming more cognizant of this threat, but as the survey reveals, much more vigilance will be required."

from Monitor Today

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on November 8, 2005 at 08:55 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Hacking fears bog down online banking growth

The number of people who turn to the Internet for personal banking isn't growing--but those who are already hooked on such services are using them more often, a new survey has shown.

from News.com

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on September 7, 2005 at 10:40 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Attention victims of work-at-home scams

If you are a victim of a work-at-home check cashing scam which was posted on a job board web site like Careerbuilder or Monster, AND you are a resident of the NY Metro area, please read on.

I was contacted by someone writing an article for a major US newspaper. She wants to speak with people who live in the NY area that have been victimized by one of these work-at-home scams. She is happy to keep it anonymous if you don't want your name revealed in the article.

To contact her, send an email to tellmemoreplease@sbcglobal.net.

(She will only be taking inquries for a short time. This was posted on June 13 2005. )

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on June 13, 2005 at 05:24 PM | Permalink | Comments (48)

Update on recent data security breaches

Since the ChoicePoint announcement, news about data breaches and information heists have become almost a daily occurrence. Here's an update courtesy of the US PIRG:

-- Bank of America came clean that back-up data tapes containing personal information and account numbers of 1.2 million Americans including federal employees (and members of Congress) went missing.

-- NY Senator Schumer blasted WestLaw for selling Social Security numbers to those who purchase access to its extensive databases of personal information.

-- LexisNexis, another data aggregator similar to ChoicePoint and WestLaw, announced that thieves accessed personal information of 32,000 consumers of its Seisint division by misusing existing passwords of a legitimate account holder.

-- Discount Shoe Warehouse disclosed that 103 of its 175 stores had customers’ credit and debit card information hacked.

-- Paymaxx, an online payroll management company, may have exposed financial data including W-2 forms of as many as 100,000 workers.

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on March 14, 2005 at 11:36 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Michigan Gets Tough on ID Theft

The laws, which take effect in March, bar retailers from displaying more than the last four digits of a credit card account number on a sales receipt or mailing. Also, employers cannot print Social Security numbers on an ID badge or card, and victims of identity theft have the right to obtain a police report.
Other measures make it a felony to use people's ID information without their consent, and limit companies from using Social Security numbers as primary account numbers -- with several exceptions.
The identity theft bills are Senate Bills 220, 657, 792, 793, 795, 798 and 1384; and House Bills 6169, 6172, 6174 and 6177.

Several bills help prevent identity theft by strengthening privacy protections on the use of personal information like social security numbers.

SB 657 limits a company’s right to require customers to disclose their social security number (SSN) in order to do business;SB 795 prohibits the public display of SSNs, encourages the creation of privacy policies regarding use and disposal of SSNs, and prohibits the printing of SSNs on health care cards, student IDs and other cards, badges or licenses;SB 220 bans the printing of full credit card numbers on receipts.

Several other bills take steps to assist law enforcement officials to better track and prosecute identity thieves. 
·         SB 792 strengthens the definition of identity theft under the law;
·         SB 793 breaks down jurisdictional barriers that have blocked many identity theft cases from prosecution, allowing prosecution in the victim’s home city or county;
·         HB 6172 extends the statute of limitations for identity theft crimes;
·         HB 6169  redefines identity theft in the criminal code. 

The final bills in the package assist victims of identity theft to recover:
·         SB 1384 gives victims the right to have a police report taken and to get a copy of that report;
·         SB 798 protects victims from being denied credit or utility service because they’ve been an identity theft victim.

The full text of the bills can be found at www.MichiganLegislature.org

Thanks to Linda Foley of the ID Theft Resource Center.

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on December 28, 2004 at 10:27 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Michigan House approves bills to crack down on identity theft

A large package of bills aimed at preventing and cracking down on those who use others' identity to rack up bad debt won approval Wednesday from the state House.

from Detroit Free Press

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on November 6, 2004 at 10:15 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Phishing Tab To Reach $500 Million

A new study weighs in with estimates as to how much online fraud, or phishing, is costing consumers.
Seventy-six percent of consumers are experiencing an increase in spoofing and phishing incidents, researchers found, and 35 percent said they receive fake e-mails at least once a week.

The total bill thus far? US$500 million.

from NewsFactor Network

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on November 6, 2004 at 10:02 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Identity theft up by 45% in Britain

The problem of identity theft is becoming a growing concern for Britons, with 90% of people who have heard of the crime worrying about falling victim to it.

Incidents of identity theft, when a fraudsters uses someone else's personal details to apply for credit or benefits, soared by 45% last year.

from ic Wales

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on November 1, 2004 at 05:30 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

The Net's Biggest Scam (Phishing)

Cybercon

The scams are incredibly effective. In the 12 months through April 2004, 57 million Americans said they received what they believed was a phished e-mail, reports the consultancy Gartner. Of those, 1.8 million people took the bait, and 980,000 claimed they were scammed as a result.

from Forbes.com

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on September 24, 2004 at 06:41 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

New law offers help for ID theft victims

Free credit reports, more useful fraud alerts and less frustration for victims are all great. But Congress could have done much, much more to protect the public as it revised the law.

Congress’ recent update of the Fair Credit Reporting Act wasn’t the hideous train wreck it could have been. The new rules actually provide some significant protections to identity-theft victims in most areas of the country.

Unfortunately, the reforms may turn out to be a step backward for residents of California, Texas and some other states that have much tougher laws in place. And lawmakers could have done a lot more to attack the real reason behind identity theft’s huge rise: lax practices by lenders.

from MSN

Category: Consumer Tips, Identity Theft News
Posted on August 25, 2004 at 02:49 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Phishing Attacks Become More Acute and Globally Diverse

VeriSign, Inc., a provider of intelligent infrastructure services for the Internet and telecommunications networks, recently released the third edition of the VeriSign Internet Security Intelligence Briefing. It included some interesting statistics related to phishing scams:

-- In a sample of 490 phishing e-mails, targeting customers of
16 companies, VeriSign found that 93 percent were sent from forged
or spoofed e-mail addresses; 5 percent came from sites making no
attempt to disguise their destination, and 2 percent came from
"cousin" sites, which closely mimic the company site they are
seeking to imitate.

-- 37 percent of phishing e-mails directed users to capture sites
located outside the United States, with a concentration in Korea,
China, Poland, Brazil, Taiwan, Singapore, Australia and Indonesia.

-- VeriSign found the majority of phishing attacks were launched
between 9:00 p.m. -- 4:00 a.m., when IT staffers are often on call
or fewer in numbers.

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on July 31, 2004 at 08:03 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Louisiana Adopts Identity Theft Law [Lake Charles,LA]

Consumers have a new tool in the fight against identity theft, thanks to a recently adopted law. It allows for something called a "security freeze," which will ensure that no one has access to your credit information without your permission. State Attorney General Charles Foti says Louisiana is just the third state in the nation to approve such legislation.

from KPLC-TV

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on July 31, 2004 at 07:53 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Phishing scams

We are currently planning to discontinue posting the long lists of phishing scams. If you haven't seen these yet, we take the Subject lines from alerts posted at FraudWatch International and put them here on ScamSafe.

If any regular readers of ScamSafe want to see us continue to post these, we will reconsider. Let us know by emailing us. Thank you.

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on July 31, 2004 at 07:40 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

New UK gov't site tackles identity theft [London,UK]

A new website has been launched by the Home Office, which offers advice on how to protect against identity theft, and steps to take for victims of this crime: www.identity-theft.org.uk.

Home Office Minister Des Browne unveiled the new site. Identity theft is said to affect more than 100,000 people in the UK every year, according to the Home Office.

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on July 24, 2004 at 04:05 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Is Your Bank Helping Phishers?

Leading financial institutions have adopted a more aggressive attitude toward online identity theft cons known as "phishing scams" in recent months. But companies, including MasterCard International, may be unwittingly helping phishers trick online shoppers, says a new report from a U.K. Web developer.

A test of leading financial services Web sites, including sites run by MasterCard, NatWest, and Reuters Group revealed that many sites have loosely protected features that scam artists can use to mask their own malicious Web sites, hijacking the name and Web address of established institutions, says Sam Greenhalgh, who is 19 and operates the Web site Zapthedingbat.com.

from Yahoo!

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on July 24, 2004 at 03:16 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Anatomy of a 419 scam

Exclusive Regular readers will be familiar with our ongoing coverage of variations on the 419 advance fee fraud scam. Occasionally, we report on people who have been suckered by the promise of riches beyond the wildest dreams of avarice - and duly fleeced for their trouble.

Two oft-posed question from readers are "how could they be so stupid?", and "surely everyone is aware of these scams by now?" Indeed, we have been accused in the past of carrying too much 419 coverage.

Sadly, though, it's clear that the 419ers continue to operate with considerable success. The following is an account of how one US citizen (we have called him DG) recently lost $1,000 to a UK-based 419 outfit who used a combination of plausible correspondence, phone calls and a fake bank website to reel in their victim. We have appended the full email correspondence between DG and the 419 gang to the end of this article.

from The Register (UK)

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on July 19, 2004 at 11:34 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Identity Theft Security Legislation Signed By Governor [SPRINGFIELD, IL]

Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich has signed into law (Senate Bill 2545), a measure prohibiting insurers from printing customers' Social Security numbers on their insurance cards and thereby making it more difficult for identity thieves to steal someone's identity. This measure, which was initiated by the Illinois Bankers Association (IBA) and sponsored by State Senator Iris Martinez (D-Chicago) and State Representative John Fritchey (D-Chicago), was unanimously approved by both houses in May. The bill signing took place at the State Capitol on Wednesday morning.

from U.S. Newswire

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on July 17, 2004 at 10:46 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Firms hit hard by identity theft [Boston,MA]

Government agencies and private corporations are also vulnerable to identity theft, and they often suffer greater losses than the client whose personal information was stolen, authorities said yesterday.

"The institutions are being duped just like you would be if your information was stolen," said Ken Jones, inspector in charge for the regional Postal Inspection Service, which investigates instances of mail fraud leading to identity theft.

When credit card or bank account numbers are stolen from corporations such as credit agencies, it is often the institutions, and not private citizens, who are hit the hardest, Jones said.

from Boston Globe

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on July 17, 2004 at 10:42 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

President signs Identity Theft Penalty Enhancement Act

This new law, the Identity Theft Penalty Enhancement Act, is a good thing for everyone. But, as Linda Foley of the ID Theft Resource Center tells us, the stiffer penalties are only for those prosecuted under federal law. The individual states now need to enact stiffer penalties as well. And this will hopefully also give state and local police and prosecuters more incentive to treat identity theft more seriously and prosecute criminals more aggressively. --Scamsafe Editor

President Bush signed a measure yesterday that stiffens penalties for identity theft and makes it a felony to help terrorists obtain false identification.
The Identity Theft Penalty Enhancement Act provides up to two years in prison for anyone stealing or distributing someone else's personal information, and up to five years for anyone committing identity theft in conjunction with a terrorist act.
Signing of the bill, sponsored by Rep. John Carter, Texas Republican, comes after a five-year period in which 27 million Americans had some form of personal information stolen from them, according to the Federal Trade Commission.
"The crime of identity theft undermines the basic trust on which our economy depends," Mr. Bush said. "Identity theft harms not only its direct victims, but also many businesses and customers whose confidence is shaken."

from Washington Times

Category: ID Theft News, Identity Theft News
Posted on July 16, 2004 at 11:44 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

More Details on Identity Theft Penalty Enhancement Act

Identity Theft Penalty Enhancement Act - Amends the Federal criminal code to establish penalties for aggravated identity theft.

Prescribes sentences of two years' imprisonment for knowingly transferring, possessing, or using, without lawful authority, a means of identification of another person during and in relation to specified felony violations (including felonies relating to theft from employee benefit plans and various fraud and immigration offenses), and five years' imprisonment for knowingly taking such action during and in relation to specified felony violations pertaining to terrorist acts, in addition to the punishments provided for such felonies.

Prohibits a court from: (1) placing any person convicted of such a violation on probation; (2) reducing any sentence for the related felony to take into account the sentence imposed for such a violation; or (3) providing for concurrent terms of imprisonment for a violation of this Act and any other violation, except, in the court's discretion, an additional violation of this section.

Expands the existing identify theft prohibition to: (1) cover possession of a means of identification of another with intent to commit specified unlawful activity; (2) increase penalties for violations; and (3) include acts of domestic terrorism within the scope of a prohibition against facilitating an act of international terrorism.

See >Congressional Legislation Details (Bill # H.R.1731) from Congress.org

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on July 16, 2004 at 11:00 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Consumers May Face Increased Risk of Identity Theft

According to a new study by The Radicati Group, consumers and companies may be facing an increasing risk to Internet identify theft and fraud.

The study, "Email Anti-Phishing and Anti-Fraud Market Trends 2004-2008," projects that over the next four years there will likely be an increase in the number of worldwide unique phishing attacks--email scams that try to get customers to reveal personal information like social security numbers and passwords.

The study, which contains data compiled from interviews and surveys conducted with vendors, service providers, corporate customers, and consumers, states that the amount of unique phishing attacks is anticipated to grow from 51 per day in 2004 to 110 per day by 2005. This represents an increase of 115 percent. The report also asserts that the email antiphishing and antifraud solutions market will more than quadruple, from $202 million in 2004 to more than $880 million by 2008.

from Destination CRM

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on July 9, 2004 at 08:53 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Passports to help identity theft victims [Jackson,MS]

A new program overseen by the Mississippi state Attorney General's office should help people like Powell. The 25-year-old Jackson resident was the first person Thursday to receive a new identity theft victim passport, which he can show to clear up confusion if he's ever in a similar situation.

The passports are part of a statewide effort to prevent identity theft and to aid its victims. A law went into effect Thursday increasing the maximum jail sentence for an identity theft conviction from five years to 15. A person convicted of identity theft must pay the victim restitution and pay double the cost of the investigation.

"Mississippi is off limits to identity thieves," Attorney General Jim Hood said.

from Jackson Clarion Ledger

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on July 9, 2004 at 04:49 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Canadians Overwhelmingly Concerned about Identity Theft, but Most Do Not Know How to Protect Themselves

CHANTILLY, Va.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--June 30, 2004--Seventy-five percent of Canadians say they are concerned about identity theft, but only 20 percent consider themselves 'very well informed' about how to protect themselves against one of the fastest-growing crimes in North America.


These are among the findings of a telephone poll of 1001 Canadian adults released today by Intersections Inc. (Nasdaq:INTX). Conducted earlier this month by Ipsos-Reid on behalf of Intersections, the preliminary results were presented at the recent meeting of the Credit Scoring and Risk Strategy Association (CSRSA) at Blue Mountain Resort in Collingwood, Ontario.

"While identity thieves are getting more sophisticated in the ways they perpetrate their crimes, Canadians are not yet equally savvy in their responses to this growing threat," said Sheila McCracken, who directs Intersections' Canadian solutions group, commenting on the findings.

from BUSINESS WIRE

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on July 8, 2004 at 12:29 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Senate approves identity theft bill [Wash, DC]

The U.S. Senate has passed a bill proposed by U.S. Rep. John Carter, R-Round Rock, to increase penalties for identity theft.

The Identity Theft Penalty Enhancement Act was passed unanimously Friday. The bill now awaits President Bush's signature.

from Austin Business Journal

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on June 28, 2004 at 05:21 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

How phone companies enable fraud

ScamSafe has been reporting on a work-at-home check cashing scam (operating under various names, i.e. Xian Energy, Nextdayfinance, PureXian.biz). In the past we commented on how job web sites post ads for these thieves and thus enable their crimes--even after being notified that these are illegal operations. Another culprit is the phone companies which provide the telephone and fax lines. Dick Hambrice, a victim of this crime ring, has been doggedly trying to shut them down by contacting job boards, web hosters and telephone companies.

Dick reports, "The Compton phones (for Nextdayfinance) belong to PacWest Telecom. I emailed them a couple of weeks ago letting them know about the criminal enterprise using them. Their reply was 'This information is being sent to our customer who the number is leased out to. They will investigate and take the appropriate actions. Thank you, Network Operations Security.'" Dick continues, "I called the numbers this morning and they are still working."

It appears that PacWest is asleep at the wheel, while thousands of consumers are being ripped off by this international crime ring. Shame on PacWest--and whichever company is leasing their lines.

Category: Consumer Tips, Identity Theft News
Posted on June 17, 2004 at 09:12 AM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Oklahoma Governor Signs Identity Theft Bill

Oklahoma Gov. Brad Henry has signed Senate Bill 1164, a measure designed to help protect victims of identity theft.

According to the Senate Communications Office, State Sen. Mike Johnson, R-Kingfisher, is principal author of the bill, which creates an "Identity Theft Passport" to protect innocent victims from arrest or other legal actions.

"While the digital age provides many benefits, it also has a dark side in the form of identity theft. Oklahoma is now one of the first states to address the nightmare identity theft victims go through when they're falsely accused," Johnson said.

FULL STORY from Insurance Journal [pop up]

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on June 16, 2004 at 01:32 PM | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Oklahoma Governor Signs Identity Theft Bill

Oklahoma Gov. Brad Henry has signed Senate Bill 1164, a measure designed to help protect victims of identity theft.

According to the Senate Communications Office, State Sen. Mike Johnson, R-Kingfisher, is principal author of the bill, which creates an "Identity Theft Passport" to protect innocent victims from arrest or other legal actions.

"While the digital age provides many benefits, it also has a dark side in the form of identity theft. Oklahoma is now one of the first states to address the nightmare identity theft victims go through when they're falsely accused," Johnson said.

from Insurance Journal

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on June 16, 2004 at 01:32 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Vermont passes ID Theft crime bill

Colorado only remaining state without one

Identity theft is a growing problem in the United States, and soon, Vermont will have a law to protect consumers from losing money and their good credit.

Your personal information is everywhere -- in your mail, your wallet, and even on the Internet. If criminals get a hold of your private information, like your social security number or a credit card number, they can assume a your identity.

Currently identity theft is not a crime in Vermont.

FULL STORY from theChamplainChannel.com [pop up]

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on June 16, 2004 at 01:19 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Vermont passes ID Theft crime bill

Colorado only remaining state without one

Identity theft is a growing problem in the United States, and soon, Vermont will have a law to protect consumers from losing money and their good credit.

Your personal information is everywhere -- in your mail, your wallet, and even on the Internet. If criminals get a hold of your private information, like your social security number or a credit card number, they can assume a your identity.

Currently identity theft is not a crime in Vermont.

from theChamplainChannel.com

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on June 16, 2004 at 01:19 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Americans Believe Insurance Fraud Occurs Because People Think They Can Get Away With It

NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--May 25, 2004--The majority of Americans say insurance fraud occurs because people believe they can get away with it, according to results of a survey released today by Accenture.

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on June 2, 2004 at 03:59 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Americans Believe Insurance Fraud Occurs Because People Think They Can Get Away With It

NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--May 25, 2004--The majority of Americans say insurance fraud occurs because people believe they can get away with it, according to results of a survey released today by Accenture.

FULL STORY from Yahoo! [pop up]

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on June 2, 2004 at 03:59 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Feds Want Tougher Penalties For Insider Identity Theft [USA]

A federal proposal to combat identity theft takes a particularly hard line on people who abuse insider access to information to commit the crime.

The House Judiciary Committee earlier this month passed a bill, the Identity Theft Penalty Enhancement Act, that would establish a new crime of aggravated identity theft--the use of a stolen identity to commit certain crimes--and increase applicable penalties. The bill also includes an amendment that directs the U.S. Sentencing Commission to revise its guidelines to include stronger punishment for those who abuse a position of trust to commit insider identity theft. The bill is likely to be brought to the full House for a vote in the near future.

from Information Week

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on June 2, 2004 at 02:49 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Feds Want Tougher Penalties For Insider Identity Theft [USA]

A federal proposal to combat identity theft takes a particularly hard line on people who abuse insider access to information to commit the crime.

The House Judiciary Committee earlier this month passed a bill, the Identity Theft Penalty Enhancement Act, that would establish a new crime of aggravated identity theft--the use of a stolen identity to commit certain crimes--and increase applicable penalties. The bill also includes an amendment that directs the U.S. Sentencing Commission to revise its guidelines to include stronger punishment for those who abuse a position of trust to commit insider identity theft. The bill is likely to be brought to the full House for a vote in the near future.

FULL STORY from Information Week [pop up]

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on June 2, 2004 at 02:49 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Phishing Attacks Still Rising

Phishing scams climbed almost 200 percent during April, according to the newest numbers released by the Anti-Phishing Working Group this week.

In April, the group spotted nearly 1,100 unique phishing campaigns, a 178 percent increase over March, signs that the already-serious problem is accelerating. Earlier, the Anti-Phishing Working Group noted that the number of unique scams in March were up 43 percent over February's.

from Yahoo!

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on May 31, 2004 at 11:35 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Phishing Attacks Still Rising

Phishing scams climbed almost 200 percent during April, according to the newest numbers released by the Anti-Phishing Working Group this week.

In April, the group spotted nearly 1,100 unique phishing campaigns, a 178 percent increase over March, signs that the already-serious problem is accelerating. Earlier, the Anti-Phishing Working Group noted that the number of unique scams in March were up 43 percent over February's.

FULL STORY from Yahoo! [pop up]

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on May 31, 2004 at 11:35 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Holden signs Missouri identity theft bill [JEFFERSON CITY, Mo]

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. - Identity thieves will face tougher sentences and may be sued for damages under a bill signed Monday by Gov. Bob Holden.

Under the new law, taking effect Aug. 28, fines and jail terms are tied to the value of the goods or services obtained by a thief using stolen identity.

from Kansas City Star

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on May 14, 2004 at 11:02 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Holden signs Missouri identity theft bill [JEFFERSON CITY, Mo]

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. - Identity thieves will face tougher sentences and may be sued for damages under a bill signed Monday by Gov. Bob Holden.

Under the new law, taking effect Aug. 28, fines and jail terms are tied to the value of the goods or services obtained by a thief using stolen identity.

FULL STORY from Kansas City Star [pop up]

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on May 14, 2004 at 11:02 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

New survey measures scale & impact of phishing scams

A study from the research firm Gartner Inc., released May 4th, says that 970,000 Americans have been scammed through a phishing attack--at a cost of about $1.2 billion to U.S. financial institutions.

Phishing uses emails (and Web sites) designed to look legitimate to fool people into typing in their sensitive personal information.

The Anti-Phishing Working Group reported 402 different phishing schemes in March of 2004, up 43% from February's 282. Phishing scams have exploded in the last 6-12 months. Gartner reports that 76% of attacks happened within the last six months and 92% in the last year.

According to the Gartner survey, 58% of Americans who shop or pay bills online are "very concerned" about the safety of their online information.

57 million Americans have now received a phishing email message according to Gartner. And 11 million (19%) said they followed the email's instructions to visit fake Web sites. Another 3% (1.8 million) of those who received messages said they did hand over their personal or financial data. Gartner believes that as many as a million more were duped and didn't even realize it.

from Gartner

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on May 6, 2004 at 05:04 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

New survey measures scale & impact of phishing scams

A study from the research firm Gartner Inc., released May 4th, says that 970,000 Americans have been scammed through a phishing attack--at a cost of about $1.2 billion to U.S. financial institutions.

Phishing uses emails (and Web sites) designed to look legitimate to fool people into typing in their sensitive personal information.

The Anti-Phishing Working Group reported 402 different phishing schemes in March of 2004, up 43% from February's 282. Phishing scams have exploded in the last 6-12 months. Gartner reports that 76% of attacks happened within the last six months and 92% in the last year.

According to the Gartner survey, 58% of Americans who shop or pay bills online are "very concerned" about the safety of their online information.

57 million Americans have now received a phishing email message according to Gartner. And 11 million (19%) said they followed the email's instructions to visit fake Web sites. Another 3% (1.8 million) of those who received messages said they did hand over their personal or financial data. Gartner believes that as many as a million more were duped and didn't even realize it.

For more information, see this article from Gartner.

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on May 6, 2004 at 05:04 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Two charged in $5 million coin scam [Miami,FL]

MIAMI - A couple who advertised in Christian magazines has been charged with running a $5 million fraud by selling gold coins at two to three times their actual value, federal prosecutors said Wednesday.

Customers claim the coins were actually worth as little as 10 percent of the sales price.

The $5 million figure was tied to charges in a 38-count mail and wire fraud and money-laundering indictment, but Assistant U.S. Attorney Richard Boscovich said in court that the coin scam pitched by a self-proclaimed born-again Christian may have cost investors $10 million since 2000.

The Miami couple lived the lifestyle of millionaires as complaints mounted against them in the operations of U.S. Coin Exchange Inc., Coin and Currency Clearing Corp. and Twenty-First Century Grading Service Inc.

Bail was set at $1 million for Armand DeAngelis, who has a New Jersey securities-fraud conviction on his record, and $200,000 for his wife, Marcela Ospina Cardona.

from tallahassee.com

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on April 30, 2004 at 10:49 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Two charged in $5 million coin scam [Miami,FL]

MIAMI - A couple who advertised in Christian magazines has been charged with running a $5 million fraud by selling gold coins at two to three times their actual value, federal prosecutors said Wednesday.

Customers claim the coins were actually worth as little as 10 percent of the sales price.

The $5 million figure was tied to charges in a 38-count mail and wire fraud and money-laundering indictment, but Assistant U.S. Attorney Richard Boscovich said in court that the coin scam pitched by a self-proclaimed born-again Christian may have cost investors $10 million since 2000.

The Miami couple lived the lifestyle of millionaires as complaints mounted against them in the operations of U.S. Coin Exchange Inc., Coin and Currency Clearing Corp. and Twenty-First Century Grading Service Inc.

Bail was set at $1 million for Armand DeAngelis, who has a New Jersey securities-fraud conviction on his record, and $200,000 for his wife, Marcela Ospina Cardona.

FULL STORY from tallahassee.com [pop up]

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on April 30, 2004 at 10:49 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

CA law protects seniors & dependent adults from fraud & ID theft

In January 2004, California bill A.B. 1131, entitled "An act to amend Section 368 of the Penal Code, relating to crime" passed into law. This law expands the existing elder & dependent adult abuse provisions to include forgery, fraud, or identity theft. This bill was authored by Hannah-Beth Jackson, D-Santa Barbara.

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on April 29, 2004 at 11:46 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

CA law protects seniors & dependent adults from fraud & ID theft

In January 2004, California bill A.B. 1131, entitled "An act to amend Section 368 of the Penal Code, relating to crime" passed into law. This law expands the existing elder & dependent adult abuse provisions to include forgery, fraud, or identity theft. This bill was authored by Hannah-Beth Jackson, D-Santa Barbara.

The text of S.B. 1131 can be found here in PDF format [pop up]

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on April 29, 2004 at 11:46 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Banks Start To Offer Free Identity Theft Insurance [MECHANICSBURG, Pa]

MECHANICSBURG, Pa. -- Identity theft is the fastest growing crime in America.

While identity theft insurance has been around for years, some banks are now giving that insurance to their customers.

Victims of identity theft, in almost every case, are not held financially responsible for any charges made in their name, but when it comes to clearing their name and their credit record, victims are on their own and that will cost money.

That's where free identity theft insurance comes in for customers of PNC Bank.

from WGAL

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on April 24, 2004 at 05:26 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Banks Start To Offer Free Identity Theft Insurance [MECHANICSBURG, Pa]

MECHANICSBURG, Pa. -- Identity theft is the fastest growing crime in America.

While identity theft insurance has been around for years, some banks are now giving that insurance to their customers.

Victims of identity theft, in almost every case, are not held financially responsible for any charges made in their name, but when it comes to clearing their name and their credit record, victims are on their own and that will cost money.

That's where free identity theft insurance comes in for customers of PNC Bank.

FULL STORY from WGAL [pop up]

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on April 24, 2004 at 05:26 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack