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How I Stole Someone's Identity

Discussion in 'The Lounge - Off Topic' started by tripwire45, Sep 6, 2008.

  1. tripwire45
    Honorary Member

    tripwire45 Zettabyte Poster

    This is an article published by Scientific American and describes how amazingly easy it is for someone to rip you off. A related article called "Forgot Your Password" May be the Weakest Link can be found at MSNBC.com.
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  2. dales

    dales Terabyte Poster

    pretty interesting article there, nice find thanks
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  3. vgarg

    vgarg Nibble Poster

    Its a good article but hacking an UK banking account is much much harder as for starters the username and passwords are all sent to home address by post and can not be reset online.
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  4. r.h.lee

    r.h.lee Gigabyte Poster


    What if someone steals the mail?
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  5. zebulebu

    zebulebu Terabyte Poster

    LOL - that's more secure? Because all the staff that work for the Royal Mail are vetted correctly, they never employ temporary staff and no-one who works for them has ever stolen a letter...

    I call B/S on this article anyway. Whilst social engineering is pretty easy to do (I've pulled it on more than a few occasions - most memorably when red-teaming my old workplace and getting the IT Director's domain password from a new IT Support bod who didn't know me from Adam) some of the article reeks of lies. Who in the name of God would ever put their Father's middle name up on a blog?

    B/S - though the concepts and skills discussed are definitely valid ones.
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  6. postman

    postman Byte Poster

    Speaking as a postman - I have to say that most of the theft for profit are by organised gangs who get the jobs just to steal personal details/cheque books/credit cards etc. (as opposed to the postmen who are just too lazy to deliver the mail) but it's just as easy to go through peoples rubbish to find out personal details.
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    Honorary Member

    UCHEEKYMONKEY R.I.P - gone but never forgotten. Gold Member

    That's very true, some people don't even use paper shredders for bank statements or letters.8)

    Also (I found this out from fixing my next door neighbours PC) some people shop and bank online without a firewall, anti-spyware or even an upto date antivirus program.:rolleyes:

    One person I know had over 300 virus and spyware on her Pc. she only told me about the infection after she had got a letter from the bank saying she was overdrawn and had to pay a fee.

    Yes .. you guessed it she did all her shopping online and banking, without any (and I mean any except windos xp firewall) security. All her savings had gone and even the money in the share account they had been saving for their honeymoon (they were getting married next month)!

    I was shocked that people surf the net without any security on their PC's!:rolleyes:
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    Honorary Member

    UCHEEKYMONKEY R.I.P - gone but never forgotten. Gold Member

    Oh! I almost forgot something else about stealing identity...

    I thought when they changed the credit/debit cards to chip and pin that the card would loose the magnetic strip??? Isn't that what chip and pin is for?

    Because a local petrol garage where I live, had been copying/cloning credit and debit cards. This was done (so I was told) from using the magnetic strip on the back of the card!:eek:
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  9. hbroomhall

    hbroomhall Petabyte Poster Gold Member

    The magnetic stripe is still needed in countries (like the USA I believe) which don't have chip and pin. Also needed where the user is unable (for a number of reasons) to use the PIN.

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  10. zebulebu

    zebulebu Terabyte Poster

    Yep - card fraud is still rife, now being done by organised gangs skimming card details from pin readers then committing CNP (card not present) fraud in Canada, India and the US.

    My wife was done last week - pretty sure it was the local somerfield where they've apparently been covering up the fact that two of their pin pads were nicked months ago.

    Its clear what's happening: someone gets a job there, nicks a pin reader and takes it home, fits a skimming device inside then takes it back to the shop the next day with no one any the wiser. They leave it there for a few weeks, then nick it properly, take all the card details and chuck it - then use the numbers to buy things abroad using a stooge.

    All organised, lucrative and little risk involved (other than for the sap doing the pub pad theft). Where I live its organised gangs of eastern Europeans - mainly Lithuanians and Moldovans - in other parts of London its Sri Lankans, Somalians or Romanians. A lot of them are illegal immigrants and the police can't really do much about it - ya just a fact of life and you have to get on with it.
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