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.: Tougher privacy laws can fight identity theft - 3rd Mar 2005

"IF you're paranoid about being the victim of identity theft, you ought to be. There are so many ways for the bad guys to get your most sensitive personal information that even the most vigilant consumer is an easy target. I thought that buying a $60 shredder would solve the problem. Grinding up junk mail containing credit card offers was supposed to make me less vulnerable to identity theft. It said so on the box.

Now I find that "Dumpster divers" jump into trash bins at restaurants and businesses looking for credit card receipts and other documents that might be the gateway to stealing my identity. The divers especially like the bins behind banks and mortgage companies because discarded loan applications have all the information they need for their scams..."
[Oakland Tribune]




.: What's on your PC? Spyware, Trojans and diallers - 3rd Mar 2005

"Users are increasingly losing ownership of their PCs with a growing amount of spyware and malicious applications finding their way on to computers in homes and the workplace. Worse still, the infections may go largely undetected.

The issue of spyware has been a major concern so far during 2005 but figures released by Computer Associates show Trojans, diallers, keyloggers and hacker tools also exist on users' PCs in worrying numbers. Sam Curry, vice president of product management for CA eTrust, told silicon.com: "In all my time I have never seen an increase in the level of a particular threat like we have seen with spyware..."
[silicon]




.: Payroll site closes on security worries - 24th Feb 2005

"Online payroll service provider PayMaxx shuttered its automated W-2 site on Wednesday, after a researcher claimed that two security holes had exposed data on more than 25,000 people. A description of the problem posted on Think Computer's Web site by Aaron Greenspan, president of the software start-up, said that the security issues could allow anyone to view the W-2 forms generated for employees of PayMaxx's clients for the last five years.

The incident comes a week after background-check provider ChoicePoint acknowledged that data thieves had created dozens of fake companies to acquire more than 145,000 records touching on the personal lives of U.S. citizens. Federal legislators are considering strong protections on identity data following the ChoicePoint leak, and a class action lawsuit has been filed in California..."
[news.com]




.: Spyware infiltrates blogs - 24th Feb 2005

"Hackers are using blogs to infect computers with spyware, exposing serious security flaws in self-publishing tools used by millions of people on the Web.

The problem involves the use of JavaScript and ActiveX, two common methods used to launch programs on a Web page. Security experts said malicious programmers can use JavaScript and ActiveX to automatically deliver spyware from a blog to people who visit the site with a vulnerable Web browser. Spyware tools also have been hidden inside JavaScript programs that are offered freely on the Web for bloggers to enhance their sites with features such as music. As a result, bloggers who use infected tools could unwittingly turn their sites into a delivery platform for spyware..."
[news.com]




.: ChoicePoint data theft widens to 145,000 people - 22nd Feb 2005

"ChoicePoint has confirmed that scammers culled the personal information of tens of thousands of Americans in a recent attack on its consumer database, resulting in 750 individual cases of identity theft.

The Atlanta-based company said that it plans to inform approximately 110,000 consumers outside the state of California whose information may have been accessed in the criminal scheme, originally reported on Tuesday. The company has already told some 35,000 Californians that their personal data, including their names, addresses, Social Security numbers and credit reports, was stolen by scammers. California is the only U.S. state with legislation in place that requires companies to notify its residents when their personal data has been compromised..."
[news.com]






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