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Identity Theft

Protect yourself from fraud and identity theft with the latest news, articles, and editorials from Adam K Levin.


  • Child Identity Theft: The 17-10 SolutionBlog, Identity Theft

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    This week I had the opportunity to attend a fascinating forum in Washington, DC, to explore the myriad issues surrounding child identity theft, including foster care identity theft (a particularly cruel malady foisted upon children who already begin life behind the eight ball) and identity theft within families. The event was sponsored by the Federal Trade Commission and the Office for Victims of Crime, Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice, and was attended […]

  • The Michaels & Fox Data Breaches: Coincidence or Cohesion?Data Security, Blog, Privacy, Identity Theft, Technology

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    Well, two fascinating—and repellant—things happened in the last few days, which but for the broadest possible subject matter connection, would seem to be unrelated. On May 6, a group calling itself LulzSec hacked Fox Entertainment network computers and released personal information about people from the database of potential contestants for the popular Fox show “X Factor.” Five days later, the same group announced in quite caustic terms that it also had hacked Fox.com computers to […]

  • Phishing

    Bin Phishin’?Data Security, Blog, Identity Theft, Technology

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    Last week, the President and Commander in Chief announced something many Americans had been anticipating (though less and less, as time passed) for nearly a decade. Osama bin Laden, the person responsible for the single largest murder of Americans in history had been found and summarily executed in a stunningly efficient covert operation carried out by the Navy Seals. Not everyone reacted with the same celebratory response seen outside the White House and at Ground […]

  • What Do Data Breaches, Globalization and Unprotected Sex Have in Common?Data Security, Blog, Identity Theft, Technology

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    In the 21st century, the data breach apology letter has established itself as a new literary art form. Countless CEOs from corporations big and small as well as elected officials have had to reach out to the public and offer mea culpas that both communicate how sorry they are that this serious breach happened, and ultimately that there is nothing to worry about because nothing has happened to you … yet. So how does one […]

  • The End of Digital Innocence: What Does the Epsilon Breach Mean?Data Security, Blog, Identity Theft, Technology

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    Spot Quiz: What does the word epsilon mean to you? It is the fifth letter of the Greek alphabet. As I recall, in its lowercase form, epsilon stands for elasticity, among economists. There might even be a fictional spy named Epsilon. I’ll bet that up until a few days ago you didn’t know that Epsilon was also the name of a company that has exposed millions of Americans (including you, most likely) to the increased […]

  • Data Leak at Stem Cell Bank Makes My Blood Run ColdData Security, Blog, Identity Theft

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    The database compromise club has a new member. Mazel Tov, Cord Blood Registry. You are the latest organization to fail in your responsibility to your clients by neglecting to provide even minimal security for their personal data. Your membership card is in the mail. Who is CBR? Before diving into the data leak, let’s learn a bit more about Cord Blood Registry. CBR is perhaps the world’s largest stem cell bank storing more than 350,000 […]

  • The Church of Identity TheftBlog, Identity Theft

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    Identity theft can happen to anyone, anywhere—and under an almost endless array of circumstances. Every year, various organizations like the Federal Trade Commission, Javelin, Gartner, Ponemon Institute, Pew and others issue reports that cite an array of victim counts anywhere from 9 million to 15 million Americans per year. Why the variance? Well, aside from various designations and inarticulate categorizations among federal and state jurisdictions, or unwillingness or inability on the part of law enforcement […]

  • A 17-Year ID Theft Saga Finally EndsBlog, Identity Theft

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    For those who say that identity theft isn’t a big deal, that it can generally be resolved by making a few phone calls to banks and credit card companies when your credit card is compromised or new accounts opened in your name, to quote Rod Serling, “Submitted for your consideration” the case of a Florida grandfather of nine, Lawrence E. Smith. ABC News‘ Jessica Hopper reports that Mr. Smith filed for a $704 tax refund […]

  • How the Feds Got the Guy They Already HadGovernment, Blog, Identity Theft

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    You have to appreciate genius. You also have to scratch your head and ask whether the inmates (literally) are running the asylum. On January 20, 2011, the United States Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio announced that Dimorio McDowell, the leader of an identity theft ring that ran up $250,000 of fraudulent charges, was sentenced to more than 14 years in prison. Unfortunately, while the crime is not unusual and the amount wasn’t shocking, […]

  • The Javelin Conundrum: Making Sense of the Latest Identity Theft NumbersData Security, Blog, Identity Theft

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    At first blush one might be cheered by the results of the newly released Javelin Strategy & Research 2010 Identity Fraud Survey Report. The Good News Identity fraud incidents decreased in the United States by 28%. That’s three million less victims than reported in their findings in 2009. The total overall fraud amount dropped from $56 billion to $37 billion in 2010. The mean loss per consumer dropped from just under $5,000 to just over […]

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