CIMIP - Center for Identity Management and Information Protection

April 2011 News Archive

April 29, 2011

Sony sued over PlayStation ID theft

Japan's electronics giant Sony is being sued in the US for negligence over the hacking of its PlayStation network, which could lead to the identity theft of millions of users. full article

Cops: Orlando Woman Stole IDs For Years

ORLANDO, Fla. -- Detectives want to know if you've been a victim of identity theft. They just arrested an Orlando woman who, they say, has been stealing identities in Orange County for years. full article

Man might face 12 or more years in prison

A Fort Collins man charged with multiple counts of identity theft, theft and forgery in Northern Colorado and Wyoming could face 12 or more years in prison after accepting a plea deal Thursday. full article

Duluth Police Flooded With Calls After Identity Theft Ring Bust

Local Woman Believes She Is Among Victims full article

Costa Mesa woman gets three years for identity theft ring

A Costa Mesa woman has been sentenced to three years in state prison for her involvement in an identity theft ring that charged thousands of dollars in merchandise at Best Buy stores throughout Los Angeles and Orange counties. full article

Andover man indicted for identity theft

ANDOVER — Michael R. Figler, 30, of Andover, was charged with second degree theft by deception, second degree identity theft and fourth degree forgery in connection with alleged crimes committed with a mortgage fraud ring operating out of Marlboro. full article

Beware Your Digital Footprint

What you Post On-line Now May Come Back to Haunt You Later full article

'Largest single case State Police has investigated regarding poaching'

SPRINGFIELD, Ore. - Nine people face a charge of racketeering and over 100 counts of identity theft, fraud and hunting crimes after prosecutors took the results of a 15-month investigation to a grand jury. full article

Nebraska mom accused of using son's Social Security number to get clean criminal background

LINCOLN, Neb. — A Nebraska woman who worked as a Medicaid biller for a child mental health center in Lincoln is suspected of using her 6-year-old son's Social Security number to allegedly get a clean criminal background report. full article

Deputies: Silverdale ID theft suspect had at least 30 local residents' personal information

SILVERDALE — A Silverdale man has been charged with second-degree identity theft as part of a scheme in which investigators claim he stole thousands of dollars, according to documents filed in Kitsap County District Court. full article

April 28, 2011

Wi-Fi security flaw for smartphones puts your credit cards at risk

BT Openzone and other hotspots can be easily mimicked leaving consumers vulnerable, Guardian investigation finds full article

Sen. Nelson asks for investigation of tax fraud by identity thieves

New laws may be needed to combat deception

U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson is calling for a federal investigation into an explosion of tax fraud by identity thieves that is holding up legitimate refunds for thousands of taxpayers. full article

Wisconsin locksmith who posted phony Craigslist ads gets probation for identity theft

Joshua Burlin, who placed phony ads on Craigslist and phony reviews on the Internet to interrupt competitors' locksmith businesses, then lied about it to investigators, was sentenced Tuesday to two years probation by Dane County Circuit Judge Nicholas McNamara. full article

Conn. implementing program that will require more extensive IDs at DMV

WETHERSFIELD — About half the states have rejected the Real ID program, but Connecticut is forging ahead with drivers required to bring extensive documentation to get their licenses renewed starting in October. full article

'Steal everything' era of hacking

The devastating attack on the PlayStation Network (PSN) is yet another illustration of how technology-savvy criminals are determined to get their hands on our personal information. full article

Tax fraud nets woman 8 years in prison

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - A 34-year-old Baton Rouge woman has been sentenced to nearly eight years in prison after admitting she used the names of nursing home patients to defraud the Internal Revenue Service of $76,762. full article

Allianz temp worker accused of identity theft

A 30-year-old Minneapolis woman has been accused of using her job as a temporary employee of Allianz Life Insurance Co. to steal identities of five people in a scheme that resulted in losses of more than $50,000. full article

State hunt applicants driver’s license numbers posted by mistake

FAIRBANKS — Thousands of people who applied for hunting permits with the Department of Fish and Game had their birthdays and driver’s license numbers posted on a state website by mistake. full article

Yankees Accidentally Leak Personal Info Of 20,000 Season Ticket Holders

Yankees Accidentally Leak Personal Info Of 20,000 Season Ticket HoldersThe New York Yankees accidentally distributed a file containing information on more than 20,000 season ticket accounts. The spreadsheet contains account numbers, names, addresses, phone numbers, and email addresses, and was mistakenly sent to thousands of current clients. full article

GM workers in Lansing victimized by out-of-state credit-card fraud

EATON COUNTY -- Police say 50 workers at the General Motors assembly plant near Lansing have reported fraudulent use of their credit and debit cards. full article

April 27, 2011

Hackers stole personal data from PlayStation Network

Sony has admitted that hackers have stolen the personal information of customers who use the company's online PlayStation Network. full article

Cops: Fake tourists caught with meth in shoes

WELLINGTON, New Zealand — Ten Malaysians posing as an organized tour group were caught entering New Zealand with up to a kilogram (2.2 pounds) of methamphetamine in each of their shoes, an official said Wednesday. full article

Chicago Police Crack ID Fraud At Doctor’s Office

CHICAGO (CBS) — Investigators have unraveled an elaborate identity theft ring that has cost dozens of people thousands of dollars. full article

ID thief pleads guilty to 85 counts

OLYMPIA – An Olympia-area man who was arrested in January in the largest identity theft case in Thurston County history pleaded guilty Tuesday to three counts of first-degree identity theft and 82 counts of second-degree identity theft. full article

Bracken man indicted for identity theft

BROOKSVILLE -- A Bracken County man has been indicted by a Bracken County grand jury for allegedly stealing the identity of another man and using personal information to get credit cards and forge checks. full article

Drastic rise in cyber crimes

KUALA LUMPUR: Cyber crimes have drastically increased over the last two years, with more than 3,500 incidents reported in the first quarter of this year, almost the same figure for the entire 2009. full article

NOTL woman charged in alleged mortgage scam

Police allege $294,000 home bought fraudulently full article

Woman who stole sister’s identity to receive dental care avoids prison time

A 28-year-old Midvale woman apologized Tuesday in federal court for stealing her sister’s identity to receive dental care. full article

Free and subdomain hosting lets phishing sites live longer

A growing numbers of phishers are using free domains and subdomain to register net fraud sites, a move that seem to have allowed phishing sites to stay online longer. full article

Feds finger China in wire fraud

The FBI has issued an alert warning that money obtained by phishing is being transferred to trade companies in China. full article

April 26, 2011

Prosecutors: Fake fraud investigator may have bilked 100+ victims

A Renton woman accused of presenting herself as a bank fraud investigator and stealing $3,000 from a 90-year-old woman has been charged with identity theft. full article

Ariz. deputies rapped in immigration raid case

Sheriff Joe Arpaio's deputies singled out men because they are Hispanic, lawyers claim

PHOENIX — A federal judge ruled Monday that deputies violated the rights of two men who were detained during one of the workplace raids the Phoenix area's controversial sheriff uses to enforce immigration laws. full article

Wadsworth business owner faces federal charges

CLEVELAND — The owner of Fortress Computers, a Wadsworth company, is facing federal charges that allege she used the business to defraud the U.S. Postal Service and commit credit card fraud. full article

Woman arrested for fraud, identity theft

A Watsonville woman was arrested Friday night on several felony charges after she was allegedly found in a hotel room with information about the identities of six people. full article

Former cop, disbarred attorney charged in identity theft financial scheme

WHITE PLAINS – A South Salem man has been charged in a 31 count indictment in an alleged scheme to defraud approximately 10 people full article

Lawmakers quiz Apple, Google about location tracking

IDG News Service - Minnesota Senator Al Franken and the attorney general of Illinois have separately pressed Apple and Google to provide more information about the location data they collect about their end users. full article

Sony unsure if PlayStation Network user data was stolen

Sony has yet to determine if customers' personal information and credit card details have been stolen as part of an external intrusion into its system that has left its PlayStation network inaccessible for five days. full article

Microsoft collects locations of Windows phone users

Like Apple and Google, Microsoft collects records of the physical locations of customers who use its mobile operating system. full article

Local mom allegedly steals her own children's identity in order to get credit cards

A local mother is facing felony identity theft charges after allegedly stealing the identities of her two children. full article

Phishing: E-Mail Needs Authentication

In the wake of the Epsilon breach, organizations have taken the lead to notify consumers, telling them their e-mail addresses have been exposed and linked to information that could subject them to phishing attacks. full article

Sony unsure if PlayStation Network user data was stolen

Sony has yet to determine if customers' personal information and credit card details have been stolen as part of an external intrusion into its system that has left its PlayStation network inaccessible for five days. full article

Alleged identity theft ring busted in Philadelphia

Federal prosecutors in Philadelphia said 16 people were indicted last week in connection with an identity theft ring involving two bank tellers and an insurance company employee. full article

Salina woman charged with computer crime, ID theft

A Salina is accused of applying for a credit card online under the name of an acquaintance. full article

Wrong woman arrested, charged after identity theft

After jailing the wrong woman for two weeks, the Delaware County Sheriff’s Office continues to try to track down the person that smuggled drugs into the Delaware County jail earlier this year. full article

Widow's ID-theft nightmare nears end

An elderly Queens widow whose house was stolen by scam artists may have finally won her three-year David-and-Goliath struggle against the bank that tried to seize her home. full article

50-Month Sentence In Identity Fraud Case

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) _ A Chinese man has been sentenced to more than four years in prison for crimes including stealing mail and creating false identities to steal from four Connecticut banks. full article

April 25, 2011

By the numbers: San Diego mortgage and bank fraud

More than 1 million consumers in the U.S. last year reported complaints tied to identity theft, mortgage fraud, unscrupulous lenders and other scams -- according to the Federal Trade Commission, an agency that looks out for consumers, in its spring wrap-up of last year's numbers. full article

Police: Tommy Lee Jones, Tim Burton Targeted in Identity Theft

GLENDALE (KTLA) -- Police said a couple, who allegedly had more than 200 blank access cards and fraudulent credit account paperwork for celebrities, such as Tim Burton and Tommy Lee Jones are scheduled to be arraigned, Monday. full article

Woman charged with identity theft

A 27-year-old Honduran woman in this country illegally was arrested for identity theft and related charges after she appeared in court using another woman’s name, police said today. full article

Brocton woman linked to loan identity theft

BROCTON—A Brocton woman faces a charge of felony first-degree identity theft after she filed for a loan in 2008 using a relative’s name and then forged the victim’s signature on the loan application, Chautauqua County sheriff’s officials reported. full article

Zahra Baker's Dad Faces Felony Charge May 4

The Catawba County Courthouse will be busier than usual May 4, 2011. Adam Troy Baker, father of Zahra Baker, is scheduled for the morning session of district court in courtroom 4 on one felony charge of identity theft. full article

Kansas law requiring proof of citizenship may be costly in more ways than one

Topeka — Voting rights advocates say that Kansas’ new law that requires a photo ID to cast a ballot is bad enough, but what’s worse is its requirement that to register to vote a person, must prove U.S. citizenship. full article

Fake text messages latest ploy in scams

If it wasn’t bad enough getting duped by a false e-mail purporting to be from your bank, now consumers have to beware of fake text messages. full article

Obama Proposes Cybersecurity Strategy to Replace Passwords

A new cybersecurity strategy will do away with traditional passwords and replace them with an “Identity Ecosystem.” full article

'Most wanted' cyber criminal stole millions through fraud

A man on the FBI's most-wanted list for cyber crimes has been indicted in a Washington-area fraud scheme that was detected when he tried to swindle $280,000 from a former senator's chief of staff. full article

Old scam returns to Tri-Cities

KENNEWICK -- An old scam seeking personal information from bank and credit union customers has returned to the Tri-Cities. full article

Minn. man accused of hacking Facebook, taking IDs

Minneapolis (AP) — About a year ago, an 18-year-old woman was checking out Facebook and instant messaging with someone she thought was her friend, when she unwittingly revealed security questions that would lead to passwords for her computer accounts. full article

Anatomy Of A Credit Score

More companies are looking at ratings -- so managing them is crucial

During a shopping spree a few months ago, I opened several retail credit-card accounts to take advantage of an immediate 10% discount on that day's purchases. Surely this familiar offer was risk-free as long as I paid my bills on time, right? It wasn't until I reported this story that I found out my credit score could have been negatively affected by the spate of new accounts I opened in such a short time. I had no idea. full article

Identity theft suspects nabbed

GLENDALE — A couple are scheduled to be arraigned Monday on charges that they had more than 200 blank access cards and fraudulent credit account paperwork for celebrities such as Tim Burton and Tommy Lee Jones, police said. full article

Thieves use stolen Florida identities to get tax refunds

Tax fraud involving stolen identities has already affected hundreds if not thousands of Floridians this year and is raising questions about lax procedures at the IRS. full article

PlayStation Network Down for Fifth Day as Sony ‘Rebuilds' From ‘Intrusion' T

A holiday weekend without Portal 2 or Mortal Kombat matchups, a five-day grand total of uninterrupted void, and yes, Sony's PlayStation Network remains in the fetal position as we pull into Monday, April 25. full article

See Your Old Self Scam Spreading on Facebook

Facebook users are targeted by a new survey scam which lures them with an app allegedly capable of showing them how they'll would look when they're old. full article

RCMP seek alleged fraudster

North Vancouver RCMP are asking for help in finding a woman accused of attempted identity theft and fraud at a North Vancouver bank. full article

Thousands of personal documents found in Snellville trash

Snellville police on Saturday were investigating how thousands of documents containing people's personal information ended up in a dumpster behind a local strip mall. full article

Citibank alerts clients of credit card misuse

Bank receives information from credit card companies about fraudulent access full article

Summerfield woman gets 5 years for bank fraud, identity theft

A 47-year-old Summerfield woman was sentenced in Orlando Friday to five years in federal prison and three years of probation for bank fraud and identity theft. full article

Seattle Police Say 'wardrivers' Are Hitting Small Businesses

Seattle police are investigating a group of criminals who they say have been cruising around town in a black Mercedes stealing credit card data by tapping into wireless networks belonging to area businesses. full article

Sealed Records Exposed In Major Court Gaffe

In a shocking failure to protect sensitive details about dozens of ongoing criminal investigations, federal officials somehow allowed confidential information about sealed cases to be publicly accessible via the court system’s online lookup service, The Smoking Gun has learned. full article

Central Valley man accused of swiping credit card info

Armenak Avagyan, 28, of Rancho Cordova has been arrested on a five-count federal indictment accusing him of trafficking in counterfeit and fraudulent credit cards, as well as identity theft. full article

April 22, 2011

Ga. hacker caught with 675K credit card accounts

WASHINGTON – A computer hacker from Georgia pleaded guilty Thursday to fraud and identity theft after authorities found more than 675,000 stolen credit card accounts on his home computers. full article

NW Iowa woman charged with Identity Theft

ORANGE CITY, Iowa (KTIV)--An Orange City woman was charged with Forgery and Identity Theft. full article

Hundreds Among Victims Of Green Country Mail Theft

TULSA, Oklahoma -- Tulsa detectives call it the largest identity theft-fraud case they've ever worked. full article

Conway man charged with bank fraud, identity theft

A 27-year-old Conway man has been charged with bank fraud and identity theft, according to a news release sent today from U.S. Attorney Bill Nettles' office. full article

Phoenix-Area Man Sentenced for Forgery, ID Theft

PHOENIX - A Phoenix-area man has been sentenced to 4 ½ years in prison for forgery and identity theft. full article

Local business ripped off in credit card scam

ALBANY, GA -- There are a lot of safeguards to protect consumers from identity theft. But one local small business owner says there isn't much to protect merchants. full article

How Not to Say Sorry After a Blunder Affecting Millions

Eating crow is a fine art. Susan Combs hasn’t mastered it. full article

Feds: Checks not Greco’s

SCRANTON – The U.S. Attorney’s Office has decided not to prosecute the person who issued nearly $42,000 in electronic checks, without authorization, for taxes owed by area businessman Thom Greco, according to a letter to Greco. full article

More info offered on those affected from prank involving EIU shredded documents

CHARLESTON - Eastern Illinois University officials have now determined that shredded documents taken from campus and released improperly contained information - including names and Social Security numbers - of people employed at the university between 2001 and 2004. full article

Man arrested in New Hampshire on RW identity theft

ROCKWALL — A 32-year-old man who reportedly had been using the identity of a former Rockwall co-worker for the past seven years was arrested this week in West Lebanon, New Hampshire. full article

Cops refuse to say if they secretly snarf cellphone data

'Enormous risk' from mobile snoop devices full article

ABM Industries notifies employees that their data was stolen

ABM Industries notified some current and former employees that their names and Social Security numbers have been breached. full article

Epsilon Breach: The Growing Impact

List of Affected Organizations Swells; New Focus on e-Mail full article

94 Cash4Gold customers told gold was 'lost in the mail'

When you put something in the mail, you trust it will get to its destination. But that’s not always the case. full article

April 21, 2011

Online Identity Theft Prompts Security Guidelines From White House

As a way to combat online identity theft in the age of digital shoplifting, the White House has developed a plan dubbed the National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace, or NSTIC. "Today, we take another major step; this one to ensure that the Internet's security features keep up with the many different types of online transactions people now engage in," Commerce Secretary Gary Locke said at the unveiling last week event. full article

Feds: 16 face charges in Pa. identity theft ring

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Federal authorities say they've broken up an identity theft ring involving two bank tellers and an insurance company employee. full article

Woodbury police allege ID theft via Facebook

A Woodbury man has been charged with 13 counts of identity theft for allegedly hacking into young women's Facebook and email accounts and stealing information and photos. full article

Illegal immigrant sentenced for identity theft in ND

Devils Lake, ND — On April 18, Enrique Orozco-Villegas, 28, of San Luis, Sonara, Mexico, was sentenced on charges of reentry of a deported alien, aggravated identity theft and false claim of U.S. citizenship. Orozco-Villegas was ordered deported and was removed from the United States in June 2007 and March 2009. full article

Two Augustans Sentenced To Federal Prison For Identity Theft

Savannah, GA -- Jamie L. Lawrence, 33, and Antonio R. McNeal, 25, both of Augusta, Georgia were sentenced Tuesday before United States District Court Judge J. Randal Hall to 42 and 36 months imprisonment, respectively, based on their earlier guilty pleas to mail fraud and aggravated identity theft. full article

Mummer can’t keep mum

A former Philadelphia String Band Association president was charged with mail fraud and identity theft Friday. full article

Identity Theft & Fraud: Police looking for suspect

A crook wanted for bank fraud in several states is on the loose in Charleston, and now the sheriff office is on the hunt. full article

Glen Ridge police: two more Winsor Place households hit by ID theft

GLEN RIDGE - Two additional Winsor Place households have been victimized by identity theft, the latest in a string of similar incidents reported on that one street. full article

Astakhov 'Imposter' Detained

A former Samara teacher who legally changed his name to Pavel Astakhov and started offering legal services faces charges of identity theft for purportedly impersonating the children's ombudsman and celebrity lawyer of the same name. full article

Royal wedding scareware scams arise as Big Day looms

Spyware scammers have unsurprisingly latched onto the upcoming royal wedding as a theme for rogue anti-virus scams. full article

Engineer who sued Cisco arrested for hacking it

A former Cisco engineer was arrested for allegedly hacking into the company's network 18 months after he waged a civil lawsuit accusing Cisco of monopolizing the business of servicing and maintaining its networking gear, according to a report citing a Canadian arrest warrant issue in the case. full article

Hacker hits Clive restaurant patrons' accounts

Clive police are urging central Iowans to keep close eyes on their bank accounts after more than a dozen patrons of a local Mexican restaurant had their bank accounts illegally accessed. full article

Texas fires two tech chiefs over breach

The Texas State Comptroller's office has fired its heads of information security and of innovation and technology following an inadvertent data leak that exposed Social Security numbers and other personal information on over 3.2 million people in the state. full article

April 20, 2011

Researcher finds the psychological effects of identity theft lingers with victims

In January 2010, Joanne McNeal received a series of persistent messages about her email account—seemingly from the account provider itself— seeking “verification” of her name, address and password. Late one night, when yet another warning notice arrived, she let her guard down and surrendered the data. full article

Duluth Police Uncover Identity Theft Rings

DULUTH, Ga. -- Duluth Police arrested a Suwanee woman accused of stealing the identities of nearly 6,000 people. They fear there are thousands more victims. full article

The New Ways Thieves Are Stealing Your Identity

Identity thieves are nothing if not creative; they can take the most seemingly innocent item and turn it into the keys to unlocking your financial fortress. The more technology encroaches into our daily lives, the more access we give them to our personal information. (There are many different ways to be victimized through home ownership – learn how to identify and avoid these crimes full article

New Technology Helps Thieves Copy Credit Cards

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- If you've had money mysteriously "zapped" from your bank account or charges appear on your credit card statement for things you didn't buy, you may have been the victim of a high-tech crime. Thieves don't even need your actual credit or debit card once they make an illegal copy of yours. full article

Minnesota man accused of hacking Facebook

STILLWATER, Minn. (AP) - A Minnesota man is accused of hacking into Facebook accounts and stealing identifications and photos of young women. full article

Five indicted for health care fraud in Minnesota

St. Paul, Minn. — U.S. Attorney B. Todd Jones announced indictments of 5 people accused of conducting health care fraud crimes in Minnesota. full article

Town sees greatest rise in identity fraud

BASINGSTOKE has seen the greatest rise in identity fraud in the UK, according to a new report. full article

BBB Warns Homeowners: 'Mass Joinder' Lawsuit Mailings May Be Latest Advance Fee Mortgage Modification Scheme

The Better Business Bureau (BBB) warns homeowners to steer clear of mailings asking them to join national “mass joinder” lawsuits to force their mortgage companies to cut their loan payments full article

Man wanted for defrauding banks in four states

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - The Charleston County Sheriff's Office is on the lookout for a man wanted for defrauding banks in South Carolina, Georgia, Florida and Tennessee. full article

Attorney general warns of state employee, retiree phone scam

Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott is warning Texans to be on the alert for telephone scams after the state accidentally published millions of pieces of personal information online. full article

State leaks personal information

Last week, Texas state Comptroller Susan Combs announced that the social security numbers, dates of birth and other personal information of 3.5 million people were inadvertently disclosed on a public computer server. The information was said to have been available publically for over a year and is believed to be the largest information breach in the nation. full article

Two Men Arrested for Trying to Use 50 Cent’s AmEx Card

*The New York Daily News is reporting that 50 Cent has been the victim of identity theft after two men attempted to make unauthorized purchases using his credit card account. full article

Hackers may have accessed thousands of SC students' information

LANCASTER, SC (WBTV) - The identity of thousands of students and teachers has potentially been compromised after officials with the Lancaster County School District say a hacker was able to access their system. full article

Norwich college signs data security undertaking with ICO

Norwich City College has been taken to task by the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) for dumping sensitive personal information relating to around 80 of its students into a campus skip. full article

April 19, 2011

Claims by ID theft protection services are often overblown

It seems that every time you turn around, there's news about another information security breach involving people's personal data. Just last week, marketing services firm Epsilon warned clients that hackers may have accessed the names and emails of thousands of users. Those affected included customers of such major companies as JPMorgan Chase, Citigroup, Capital One, Best Buy, Target and Verizon. full article

Yahoo plans to keep search records for 18 months

WASHINGTON – Yahoo plans to extend the amount of time it retains records on what its users search for online, less than two and a half years after breaking from the other big Internet search engines and promising to delete such data promptly full article

Oxford experiences identity theft problems

About three years ago, University of Mississippi journalism instructor Ellen Meacham used her debit card at a nearby TJ Maxx. full article

Bank Fraud & Identity Theft Lands Abingdon Woman Federal Prison Time

Abingdon, VA -- A former administrative assistant for the Southwest Virginia EMS Council was sentenced for bank fraud and identity theft in Abingdon's Federal Court. full article

More identity theft and tax fraud victims come forward

South Floridians from all walks of life — a retired doctor, a teacher and a widow — are among a growing group of victims whose stolen identities have been used by thieves to file fraudulent tax returns. full article

Hacker Breaches European Space Agency's Servers

A crafty cyberprankster says he’s cracked into the servers of the European Space Agency (ESA), but the space agency is downplaying the significance of the breach. full article

Ramona tax preparer arraigned on 49 federal counts

Bail was set at $350,000 Monday for a Ramona tax preparer after he was indicted on 49 federal charges including identity theft, mail fraud, making false tax returns and money laundering. full article

Verizon: More breaches but less data lost. Huh?!

Verizon's Data Breach Investigations Report for last year is a bit of a head scratcher. It shows that while the number of data breaches from cyber attacks rose, the amount of compromised records lost has fallen. full article

US proposes online IDs for Americans

Obama administration moves ahead with plans for adoption of internet IDs full article

Clinic security breach raises alarm

LONDON, Ont. - A memory stick containing the records of 4,500 kids has gone missing from a speech and hearing clinic at UWO, a thumb-sized example of how ever-smaller digital technology is heightening security risks. full article

Students' personal information found at storage facility

Central Ohio Technical College is offering free credit monitoring to more than 600 students after a filing cabinet of course-registration cards was accidentally sent to a storage facility. full article

Former bookkeeper at Va. EMS sentenced for fraud

ABINGDON — A former bookkeeper has been sentenced to four years, five months in prison for defrauding the Southwest Virginia Emergency Management Services Council. full article

2 suspects in Hyundai Capital hacking caught

Police arrested two suspects Monday on charges of hacking Hyundai Capital’s database and blackmailing the company by threatening to release confidential customer financial information. full article

E-mail theft more serious than firms let on

Big banks and retailers offered customers a soothing message earlier this month: Don’t worry, it’s just your e-mail address that’s been stolen from our e-mail outsourcing firm, Texas-based Epsilon. full article

April 15, 2011

Kids' pictures on Facebook exposes them to identity theft

If you upload pictures of your kids on to Facebook, experts say you may be putting them at risk for identity theft. full article

Scammers are out in force this tax season

As the tax-filing deadline approaches, people wanting your money are coming at you from all sides. No, they're not with the Internal Revenue Service. They're con artists. full article

‘Donald Duck’ Gets Okay To Use IRS Site Plagued By Identity Theft

Yesterday, we told you how someone was able to steal the tax identity of 2,300-plus small nonprofits due to a hole in a new electronic filing system implemented by the Internal Revenue Service. Every nonprofit in this group, most with religiously themed names, now lists as a principal officer one William Alexander and its address as the same mail-box drop on N. Rainbow Blvd. in Las Vegas. This happened due to a glitch that essentially allows a nonprofit’s contact information to be changed online by anyone who registers on an IRS-designated site with a name–which is not verified–and an email address. full article

Waco-Area Woman Pleads Guilty To Identity Theft

WACO (April 14, 2011)-A Waco area woman pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit identity theft Thursday in U.S. District Court in Waco. full article

Feds: 'Marc the Oil Man' is on the lam

Federal authorities are seeking a man accused of wire fraud and identity theft offenses stemming from an alleged scheme to defraud oil companies and individuals in Connecticut whose oil deliveries he allegedly fraudulently brokered. full article

Just how creepy is 'Creepy'? A test-drive

You probably know that some Internet and cell phone applications like Foursquare or Twitter can broadcast your location to the world. And you might know that Web sites with names like PleaseRobMe and ICanStalkYou have been created with shock value in mind to call attention to the potential consequences of broadcasting such information. But those sites picked on random individuals and exposed their whereabouts one at a time. full article

Serial hacker admits breaching Federal Reserve computers

A Malaysian national has admitted hacking a computer network operated by the US Federal Reserve Bank and possessing stolen payment card data. full article

April 14, 2011

In cyberspy vs. cyberspy, China has the edge

ATLANTA — As America and China grow more economically and financially intertwined, the two nations have also stepped up spying on each other. Today, most of that is done electronically, with computers rather than listening devices in chandeliers or human moles in tuxedos. full article

Massive Identity Theft With Help From The IRS

Someone has hijacked the tax identity of more than 2,300 tiny or defunct nonprofits, apparently taking advantage of a hole in a new electronic Internal Revenue Service filing system to list the same person as a charitable official at the same mail box drop in Las Vegas. full article

Identity theft hits doctor's office, banks

A San Antonio man pleaded guilty this week to possessing numerous medical files stolen from an area doctor, while a local woman was indicted separately on suspicion of using stolen identifying information in a bank fraud scam. full article

Roswell Cop Fired After Drug/ID Theft Arrest

ROSWELL (AP) _ A Roswell police officer has been arrested on drug and identity theft charges. full article

Focus of ID theft law raises concern

ST. GEORGE - Though he's adamant his department's tough new stance on state identity theft and fraud laws goes after criminals of every description, St. George Police Chief Marlon Stratton acknowledged the effort is positioning Southern Utah as a leader in the fight against illegal immigration. full article

Man receives 10 credit cards in other people's names

A B.C. man is raising identity theft concerns after he was mailed 10 Capital One credit cards in other people's names. full article

Police Crack Cell Phone Identity Theft Scam

Johnston Police say they've arrested two women in connection with a cell phone scam at T-Mobile that spans four states. full article

McDonald's employees indicted for identity theft

SAVANNAH--A federal indictment, unsealed today in federal court, charges Oscar Lazo, 51, a citizen of Peru, Eva Ramos, 35, a citizen of the United States, Maurcio Cruz, a citizen of Mexico, Manuel Cruz, a citizen of Mexico, and an unnamed defendant with conspiring to sell the stolen identities of United States citizens. full article

Sailor Has Identity Stolen For JEA Use

Someone Racked Up $800 In Services Using Sailor's Name full article

Franklin Twp. kennel owner charged with identity theft

More charges have come forward against a Franklin Township kennel owner already incarcerated for purchasing dogs using an alias name and not paying for them. full article

Massive 'Coreflood' Botnet Shut Down By DOJ, FBI

The Department of Justice and the FBI said Wednesday that the two agencies had collaborated to block the spread of "Coreflood," a botnet that had infected hundreds of thousands of PCs. full article

Fairview-Southdale missing records for 1,200 patients

St. Paul, Minn. — An Edina hospital is notifying about 1,200 patients that it lost a box containing their medical records and insurance information. Fairview-Southdale says the records concern patients who were admitted to the hospital between April 2010 and February 18, 2011. full article

WordPress Hack Puts Government and Commercial Clients at Risk

Continuing the trend in recent weeks of high-profile sites being attacked, the open source blog program WordPress announced that it was hacked on Wednesday and the hackers potentially made off with "anything." full article

School board loses memory stick with employee data

The private information of thousands of Edmonton Public School Board employees has been missing for more than three weeks, CBC News has learned. full article

April 13, 2011

Bronx Woman Is Victim Of Identity Theft On Taxes

When Sharon Hawa recently tried to file her tax return, she received some disturbing news – someone had already filed using her social security number. full article

Scammers steal identities and tax refunds

CLERMONT -- Several people in Lake County recently found out they're victims of identity theft. full article

Mail thefts across the county

Businesses and homeowners throughout Garland County are reporting their outgoing mail is being stolen and checks to pay their bills are being cashed. full article

Adam Baker charged with identity theft, fraud

The stepfather of a disabled girl killed in North Carolina last year has been arrested on two fraud charges. full article

Laptop with Oklahomans' medical information stolen

OKLAHOMA CITY - The names and medical information of more than 130,000 residents were in a laptop computer that was stolen from an Oklahoma State Department of Health employee's car last week full article

New Haven Woman Charged In Scheme To Defraud Medicaid

NEW HAVEN— A 51-year-old woman was arrested Tuesday and charged for her alleged role in a scheme to defraud a state program that provides care to disabled adults. full article

Boulder nanny receives probation in $15K credit-card fraud case

A Boulder live-in nanny arrested in November on suspicion of using her employer's credit card to make more than $15,000 in unauthorized purchases has been sentenced to four years probation after pleading guilty to fraud by check and identity theft. full article

Beware of phone scam, Whitehorse woman warns

A Whitehorse woman is warning others about suspicious phone calls, after she and her mother were targets of an identity-theft scheme on Monday. full article

Project will investigate patient health information breaches

Unlike cases involving financial data, little is known about the implications of lost information such as a diagnosis or medical history. full article

Broker sentenced to more than 5 years in mortgage fraud

A 29-year-old College Park man was sentenced Monday in federal court to more than five years in prison for defrauding a mortgage company that made loans on six Baltimore properties. full article

Thurston woman sentenced for stealing from grandma

OLYMPIA – A judge sentenced a Thurston County woman to three to six months in a residential drug-treatment facility Tuesday for stealing more than $1,000 from her ill grandmother. full article

Parents Of 60 Local Students Advised Of Possible Security Breach

Letters have been sent home to the parents of nearly 60 Killeen ISD students, warning of a possible security breach after documents containing personal information were found last month dumped in a field. full article

Data breach notification fatigue: Do consumers (eventually) tune out?

Data breach notifications are flying en masse following the Epsilon Interactive breach, but are they doing customers any good? full article

April 12, 2011

5 Traps: How do I use public Wi-Fi safely?

You've heard it for years: Using free coffee shop Wi-Fi isn't safe. But then, you've done it anyway, viewing critical work documents or doing online banking. So let's talk turkey. To borrow from a modern parental dilemma, I really don't want you doing that, but if you do, you should be taking the proper precautions. This edition of Five Red Tape Traps will help you do that. full article

Texas comptroller’s office accidentally releases private information of about 3.5M Texans

SAN ANTONIO, Texas — The personal information of about 3.5 million Texans — including addresses and Social Security numbers — was mistakenly posted on public servers controlled by the state comptroller’s office and remained there in some cases for more than a year, the agency said Monday. full article

How to fix identity theft by a spouse

just checked my credit report and found my wife opened an account using my name and information. I have never used this account. I didn't apply for this credit. Now the account is delinquent. In your opinion, what is the best way to go about fixing my credit? full article

Hackers Used Keyloggers & Spyware in Epsilon, Hartford Insurance, RSA & Heartland Payment System Breaches

StrikeForce Technologies (Pinksheets:SFOR - News) (Pinksheets:SFOR - News), an innovator in the prevention of online Identity Theft and Data Breaches for industry and consumers utilizing its patent pending protection protocols, today released information indicating that the unprecedented hack and theft of more than 10 million email addresses from email marketing industry leader Epsilon, was caused by a type of advanced threat known as "keylogging." full article

US Needs Cyber-emergency Response, Lawmaker Says

The U.S. needs a cybersecurity emergency response capability to help businesses under major attacks, a U.S. senator said Monday. full article

Epsilon E-Mail Hack: How You Can Protect Yourself

Most of the time I only hear from my credit card companies when I owe them money or when they want to sell me a new service. That's changed; now I'm being bombarded with notes telling me that a company I never heard of has been successfully hacked and these still unknown bad guys now have my name and e-mail address -- and maybe more. full article

S. Floridians Report Email Scams After Data Breach

MIAMI -- South Florida is feeling the fallout from last week's theft of millions of email addresses from a Texas marketing firm. full article

Ferndale woman who allegedly posed as dead mother may have bilked DSHS, too

A Ferndale woman who allegedly posed as her dead mother to fraudulently collect pension benefits also bilked the state government of $217,000 in social services benefits, according to new charges filed against her. full article

Woman Charged With Credit Card Theft

An Eagle Springs woman is facing several charges related to the use of a stolen credit card, according to a press release. full article

Hack attack spills web security firm's confidential data

Try this for irony: The website of web application security provider Barracuda Networks has sustained an attack that appears to have exposed sensitive data concerning the company's partners and employee login credentials, according to an anonymous post. full article

SpyEye suspects charged over alleged banking scam

UK police have arrested three men over an alleged scam involving stealing money from online bank accounts that had been compromised using the infamous SpyEye Trojan. full article

Hacker arrested after TV brag

HUNDREDS of bank card details have been found at the home of a computer hacker who boasted on TV of how he could break into the systems of the army and aerospace group Thalès. full article

Credit information at Hyundai Capital leaked to hacker

SEOUL, April 10 (Yonhap) -- Hyundai Capital, a financial unit of Hyundai Motor Group, said Sunday that confidential credit information on its customers was leaked during a recent hacker attack on its customer database that has sparked an ongoing investigation. full article

Seven arrested at casino tied to credit card fraud

NIAGARA FALLS, Ont.—Ontario Provincial police charged seven men with credit and debit card fraud at the Fallsview Casino. full article

April 11, 2011

Woman steals identity for shopping spree

A case of identity theft and forgery is the crime of the week in the Crime Stoppers program. full article

Syosset Woman Arrested For Identity Theft

Syosset woman arrested for Identity Theft that occurred on December 20th, 2010 in Syosset. full article

Asheville man arrested on identity theft charges

ASHEVILLE — Buncombe County Sheriff's deputies on Sunday arrested an Asheville man on charges of identity theft. full article

Beware: Social Security numbers available online via indexed tax documents

As one who keeps up with the cutting edge of search engines and advanced search querying, it is with much reservation and disbelief that I bring you the results of my latest online investigative research. As of 4/10/2011, I have discovered in excess of 50 tax documents containing any given combination of Social Security numbers, credit card information, names, addresses, tax IDs, and phone numbers being made available online. full article

Man pleads guilty to stealing identity of former McConnell aide

BALTIMORE (AP) - A British man accused of stealing the identity of a deceased aide to a U.S. senator has pleaded guilty to making a false claim of American citizenship. full article

Government made me do it, imprisoned TJX hacker claims

Albert Gonzalez, who is serving a 20-year sentence, wants to reverse his guilty plea full article

SCAM CITY: Nevada’s mortgage crisis

Nevada is built entirely on the ethos of separating people from their money. We pride ourselves on being sharper than the grifter, the con man. So, why do we need your stinkin’ government protection? full article

Reward Offered In ID Theft, Forgery Case

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Crime Stoppers announced on Sunday that it was offering a $2,000 reward for information about a woman sought in connection with an identity theft and forgery case. full article

April 8, 2011

17 years of identity theft results in two-year prison sentence

An Auburn man who made life miserable for a Florida resident by using his identity for the past 17 years has been sent to a California prison. full article

Ex-EMC worker sentenced in theft

A North Carolina man who stole and resold nearly $1 million in equipment from Hopkinton data storage company EMC Corp. was sentenced to 42 months in prison yesterday in US District Court in Boston. full article

Former Wachovia employee charged with embezzlement

A former Wachovia Bank employee was indicted Wednesday on bank fraud, embezzlement and aggravated identity theft charges. full article

Bonita Springs man charged with stealing identity of a Las Vegas man

LEE COUNTY, Fla.- The Lee County Sheriff's Office was contacted by the Las Vegas Police Department in reference to an identity theft investigation on March 11, 2011. full article

North Bergen woman pleads guilty for role in Palisades Park-based identity-theft ring

A North Bergen woman pleaded guilty Thursday to conspiring to use fraudulently obtained Social Security numbers and driver’s licenses to commit fraud in connection with a large-scale identity-theft and bank-fraud ring, authorities said. full article

Social-media gigolo sentenced to 3 1/2 years in prison

He stole their hearts, and then moved on to steal their identities and savings. full article

Lawsuit: Credit score sites mislead consumers

Confused about your credit score and where to get it? That’s intentional, according to a new lawsuit filed in a California federal court. full article

Microsoft Uncovers Software Piracy Ring

Raids across three countries exposes syndicate operating in Australia, Malaysia and Singapore full article

April 7, 2011

How your Facebook profile can lead to identity theft

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19/WMC-TV) - You might be giving out your social security number on Facebook just by answering two simple questions on your profile. full article

Multiple charges placed after alleged mall spree

Police arrested a city man Tuesday on multiple charges, including identity theft, after an investigation into the theft and use of a stolen debit card at several city businesses, according to a news release. full article

Stolen mail at local S.A. complex opens door to identity theft

SAN ANTONIO -- It's one of the quickest ways to have your identity stolen, and it's happening right here in San Antonio. full article

Redmond ID Theft, Fraud Suspect Pleads Guilty

BEND, Ore. -- A woman accused of identity theft and forgery crimes stretching across two states pleaded guilty Wednesday afternoon. full article

Memorial Health Warns Of Mail Scam

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -- A phony letter is circulating around town, using the familiar Memorial Health System logo to fool potential victims. full article

Former Emily Morgan hotel worker pleads guilty in massive theft case

A former San Antonio hotel worker faces up to 22 years behind bars for alleged identification theft and going on a major shopping spree with other people's money. full article

Prank or identity theft?

A string of emails sent over the course of last Friday, April 1, has sparked an investigation as to who sent messages imitating the email addresses of Zygmund Jablonski Jr. and city councilor Jim Melin. The emails came just days before the spring election, referencing incumbent councilors Melin and Michael Benton. full article

93,500 patient records taken from hospital

MERIDEN, Conn., April 6 (UPI) -- A Connecticut hospital says an employee improperly took information on 93,500 patients home on a personal hard drive. full article

April 6, 2011

Tax prep maker warns customers of Epsilon email hack impact

Computerworld - Intuit on Tuesday warned its customers to be on the alert for identity theft scams after a breach at a major marketing firm put millions of email addresses in hackers' hands. full article

Woman sentenced to 20 years in prison after being convicted of identity theft

NEW LONDON, Mo. -- A woman has been sentenced to 20 years in prison after being convicted of identity theft by a Ralls County jury. full article

School worker, 11 others charged in identity theft case

A Broward County school employee was among 12 people charged Tuesday with what the Secret Service called a "massive" identity theft and bank fraud scheme. full article

Identity theft plagues Kanawha Valley

CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Federal officials are investigating an identity theft scheme that has been draining the bank accounts of Kanawha Valley residents in recent weeks. full article

Was Your Personal Information Put at Risk by the Epsilon Hack?

What happens to your personal information when a company such as Epsilon, a nationally known email marketing company, is hacked? While many of the companies affected by the Epsilon database security breach took quick action to inform customers of the risk, many affected consumers may still be out of the loop. Even if you have not received notification of the data loss, you may be a victim and it's important to protect yourself from identity fraud. full article

Potential Phishing Scams Worry Experts

READING, Pa. -- Think twice before you reply that's the advice experts are giving after millions of email addresses were stolen this past weekend. Officials say scammers could be phishing for what they need for identity theft. full article

Attack on RSA used zero-day Flash exploit in Excel

The breach at RSA that could compromise the effectiveness of the firm's two-factor authentication SecurID tokens was accomplished via phishing e-mails and an exploit for a previously unpatched Adobe Flash hole, RSA has revealed. full article

Filing Taxes Online at the Last Minute? Don't Compromise Your Personal Information

Tips on Keeping Your Identity Secure While Filing Online From Home or on the Road full article

Broward Teachers’ Personal Information Stolen

A Broward School District employee is facing federal charges tonight in a “massive” identity theft ring that stole more than $1.2 million dollars. full article

7 of 8 Pei Wei eateries reopen after ID-theft raids

All but one of the eight Pei Wei Asian Diner restaurants that closed after some employees were found working with stolen IDs have reopened. full article

Epsilon security breach: 5 signs it's only the tip of the iceberg

Targeted attacks are the trend in cyberspace. Six months ago, the world's first cyber superweapon – Stuxnet – was discovered to be targeting Iran's nuclear facilities. This week millions of e-mail addresses were reported stolen from Epsilon, a firm that supplies e-mail marketing to BestBuy, Disney, and many others. full article

Business clerk charged with fraud

An accounts payable clerk at a Leesburg business has been charged with 97 counts of identity theft after police discovered she allegedly used a company credit card to make $24,000 in purchases. full article

Wanted: The Real Justin Turner

30-Year-Old Accused Of Obtaining Several Florida Driver's Licenses full article

Many Fax Machines Pose ID Theft Risk

Fax machines can be found is almost every workplace and in plenty of homes. But you could be putting yourself at risk of identity theft by using many of these machines. full article

UK: £1.3m fraudster jailed for tax credit and identity theft

Olajumoke Ademuyiwa (42), a former Jobcentre Plus employee, was jailed for her involvement in stealing the identities of at least 350 people and using the identities to submit over 300 fraudulent tax credit claims, in a scam that spanned over four years. full article

April 5, 2011

Ex-Gucci worker charged for identity theft, hacking computer system

A DISGRUNTLED former computer technician at Gucci's US headquarters in New York City is being accused of hacking into the luxury retailer's computer system and causing over $200,000 ($193,698) in damage. full article

Thieves are stealing children's identities

April 3, 2011, 04:25 PM — Network World — Identity theft has saddled thousands of children with debt, sometimes for years before they ever discover their personal information has been stolen, a study says. full article

Coralville man charged with burglary, theft, and identity theft

A Coralville man was arrested after allegedly stealing a woman’s wallet and using her credit card to buy a PlayStation 3. full article

What is Epsilon, and why did it have your e-mail?

Before this weekend, you'd probably never heard of Epsilon Data Management. But the Texas-based marketing firm had almost certainly heard of you. full article

Charges filed in Davis County against West Valley couple in identity theft

FARMINGTON — The Davis County Attorney's office filed charges Monday against two people allegedly involved in identify fraud. full article

Be ready when you lose a wallet or purse

I looked for the key card I keep in my wallet as I tried to come into work one day last week and froze in a panic. full article

America's 10 Most Fraud-Ridden States

Fraudsters prey on Americans. They succeed in one of two ways. Either Americans do not protect their own interests, or the government does not do enough to prevent fraud and identify theft. full article

April 4, 2011

More Customers Exposed as Big Data Breach Grows

The names and e-mails of customers of Citigroup Inc and other large U.S. companies, as well as College Board students, were exposed in a massive and growing data breach after a computer hacker penetrated online marketer Epsilon. full article

Chandler victims part of ID thefts connected nationwide

Wig-wearing women are stealing women's purses and identities from parking lots at day-care centers, parks and gyms across the country, including cities in the Phoenix area, Chandler police reported Sunday. full article

Independent Study Reveals Corporate Account Takeover Fraud Continues to Plague SMBs and Banks

Second annual Guardian Analytics and Ponemon Institute study shows that 56 percent of businesses experienced payments fraud in the last twelve months full article

Hercules police arrest two on suspicion of mail theft

HERCULES -- Two people were arrested Friday in connection with a string of mail robberies in Hercules, police said. full article

Identity Theft Destroys Victim's Life

PHOENIX - Identity theft is a maze of problems. Victims feel guilty until proven innocent. Someone piled about $40,000 in medical bills in the name of a victim and that's just the beginning. full article

Photoshopped image scam used in rogue Facebook app trap

Facebook users were put under fire on Monday by a brace of new threats, one of which spreads through a link disseminated through the Facebook Chat application. full article

Email compromised at Epsilon

Millions of addresses spilled

Permission email marketing outsourcer Epsilon has announced a data breach which may affect millions of individuals. full article

Epsilon: Biggest Breach Ever?

The list of banking institutions and retailers affected by the Epsilon e-mail breach continues to grow. full article

April 1, 2011

Report: Child ID theft on the rise

Child ID theft, among the more tragic and vexing 21st Century crimes, is much more common than previously thought, suggests a report being published Friday by a Carnegie Mellon University professor. full article

Password security and you: Why you need strong passwords in this day and age

Everyone knows that passwords are important. They keep unwanted people out of your computer and helps protect your sensitive data from getting into the wrong hands. full article

Operation Phish Phry Defendants Found Guilty

Five members of the online bank-theft gang caught by an international investigation called Operation Phish Phry face more than 30 years in prison in some case after being found guilty in federal court in Los Angeles. full article

Ethics commission continues case against Councilwoman

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB Fox 41) -- Metro Councilwoman Dr. Judy Green will have to wait to find out what actions if any an ethics commission will take against her. The investigator presenting the case to the commission asked for and was granted a continuation. full article

US Bank tip helps Danville police arrest Oakland woman

DANVILLE -- Worried that banks aren't watching your money anymore? At least one doesn't deserve such flack. full article

Former Teen Stock Swindler Sentenced to Three Years on New Hack

A former teenage hacker who once served time for an online stock-trading scheme was sentenced in New York this week to three years in prison on new charges of cracking a New York-based currency exchange service and gifting himself more than $100,000. full article

Medford caregiver accused of stealing from elderly woman suffering from terminal cancer

A Medford woman faces felony theft and mistreatment charges for allegedly stealing thousands of dollars from a woman suffering from terminal cancer. full article


Contact Information

Center for Identity Management and
Information Protection
Dr. Donald Rebovich,
Executive Director
Utica College
1600 Burrstone Road
Utica, NY 13502