identity theft expert: Criminal Hackers Had Their Best Year - 05/12/10 03:30 AM
Identity Theft Expert Robert Siciliano
The FBI reported that last year, organized criminals made double what was reported in 2008. Phishing emails containing the name and logo of the FBI were one of the top money makers for scam artists.
Successful scams included auction scams where products were bought and paid for but product was not delivered. Advanced fee scams also topped the list.
Scammers will say and do anything to get a person to part with their money.
Never automatically trust over the phone or via the internet. Unless the business is one that is well established online; … (1 comments)

identity theft expert: Top 10 Jobs For Criminal Hackers - 05/12/10 03:16 AM
Identity Theft Expert Robert Siciliano
So you wanna go to the dark side? You’ve been hearing all about this hacking thing and you’d like to impress your girlfriend and show her how you can hack into corporate databases eh? Well, first if you are nodding your head, you’re an idiot. Second, chances are better than ever that you’ll get caught. Law enforcement is actually getting pretty good at finding the bad guy. In the meantime, the FBI posted the top jobs in computer crime and the bad guys are hiring.
They need:
1. Programmers: They are the dudes that write … (2 comments)

identity theft expert: Why Everyone Should Learn to Be A Hacker - 05/11/10 12:20 AM
I know enough about hacking to make all of my software un-usable, mess up my operating system, and crash my PC. I also know enough about hacking to re-install my operating system, re-install all my software and get my PC running fresh and relatively secure. I’m no criminal hacker. And I am not suggesting that. Nor can I program; I don’t know code but I do know enough to hack in a way that keeps me running, and again, secure.
Hacker isn’t a bad word and hacking isn’t a bad thing to do. It’s something that if everyone who plugs into … (19 comments)

identity theft expert: Elderly Couple Assaulted During Home Invasion - 05/08/10 01:14 PM
Every day I scan the news for stories to report on. My job is to disseminate information in a way that is easily digestible and makes sense. Hopefully the reader will act on what they learn and make better decisions to protect themselves and their families.
It’s not easy to read stories every single day about horrible things happening to good people. The frustrating part is seeing the same awful crimes happening over and over and over again. I can write about “Elderly couple assaulted during home invasion” 20 times a day and each story will be worse than the next. … (1 comments)

identity theft expert: Why We Need Secure Identification - 05/08/10 01:01 PM
New York police have served warrants dozens of times to an elderly couple looking for suspects the couple has no knowledge of. “Police have knocked on their door 50-plus times since the couple moved into their home in 2002, looking for suspects or witnesses in murder, robbery and rape cases, according to reports. The couple has been visited by law enforcement up to three times a week. Authorities are investigating the possibility that the Martins’ identities may have been stolen.”
Criminal identity theft is when someone commits a crime and uses the assumed name and address of another person. The … (0 comments)

identity theft expert: Why American’s Identities Are Easily Stolen - 05/06/10 11:56 PM
Identity Theft Expert Robert Siciliano
We can fix this thing, but we won’t because we don’t want to be inconvenienced. I’m introduced to amazing technologies every week that will stop this. All they need is government support and system wide adoption. Meanwhile, Chuck Schumer and Ed Markey and the rest of the grand standing politicians scream about privacy and security issues when they see an opportunity for publicity, but their follow through is less than satisfactory.
We use easily counterfeited identification, Social Security numbers that are written on the sides of buses and we rely on the anonymity of the phone, … (0 comments)

identity theft expert: Secret Service: ATM Card Skimming Five Times Higher This Year - 05/05/10 03:30 PM
Identity Theft Expert Robert Siciliano
ATM skimming is approaching a billion-dollar issue. ATM skimming is happening coast to coast and there seems to be no end in sight. Skimming devices have been found recently at ATMs at a Bank of America in Daytona Beach and one weekend last month people came and went from the automated teller machine outside a Chase Bank in Escondido, California. They slipped in their cards, took their money and left.
In Boston, police uncovered an international ATM skimming ring responsible for stealing money from hundreds of local accounts. Izaylo Hristov, 28, of Ontario, Canada, a Bulgarian … (2 comments)

identity theft expert: 9 Year Old Kid Hacks Schools Computers - 04/29/10 09:53 PM
Hacking has gone from “phreaking”- hacking phone systems to “cracking”-breaking into networks for fun and fame and over the past 5 years criminal hackers from all over the world are targeting huge databases full of credit card numbers. But hacking is also becoming part of popular culture. The “scriptkiddie” from back in the day is the 9 year old today who is just very intelligent, anxious and doesn’t k now anything other than technology.

Police say a nine year old boy hacked the county school system to change teachers’ and staff members’ passwords, change or delete course content, and … (0 comments)

identity theft expert: Google Hack Whacks Passwords - 04/29/10 09:43 PM
Code named Gaia after “Greek Goddess of Earth” a Google single sign on password system was hacked in December.

The NY Times reports “the intruders do not appear to have stolen passwords of Gmail users, and the company quickly started making significant changes to the security of its networks after the intrusions. But the theft leaves open the possibility, however faint, that the intruders may find weaknesses that Google might not even be aware of, independent computer experts said.”

Google is a significant part of many individuals and businesses online activities. Millions rely on Google every day to … (0 comments)

identity theft expert: 1.5 Million Americans Have Been Victims of Medical Identity - 04/17/10 01:46 AM
Robert Siciliano Identity Theft Expert
The Smartcard Alliance has released an in-depth report called “Medical Identity Theft in Healthcare.”
While identity theft is a global issue that garners much media attention, most do not realize that medical identity theft is a serious and growing threat. Many authorities consider medical identity theft one of the fastest growing crimes in America. With the digital age of healthcare upon us, the risks are expected to increase as electronic medical records become more prevalent and the exchange of this data over expanding networks becomes more pervasive. Heightened concern over personal data security and privacy … (0 comments)

identity theft expert: April Foolery and Springtime Home Scams - 04/08/10 10:33 PM
Spring is here! Thank heavens. I’ve had enough cold and rain to last 50 winters. In the Northeast millions of people are pumping out their basements due to record rainfalls. The Boston Globe reports police want you to know that so you don’t get hit twice from the recent rains: once when your property gets damaged, and again when a con artist comes calling at your door looking to rob you.

First, there is no such thing as the “Municipal Water Disaster Department.” But in drenched communities home scammers are posing as inspectors and gaining access to people’s homes.

identity theft expert: April Foolery and Springtime Home Scams - 04/08/10 10:30 PM
Spring is here! Thank heavens. I’ve had enough cold and rain to last 50 winters. In the Northeast millions of people are pumping out their basements due to record rainfalls. The Boston Globe reports police want you to know that so you don’t get hit twice from the recent rains: once when your property gets damaged, and again when a con artist comes calling at your door looking to rob you.

First, there is no such thing as the “Municipal Water Disaster Department.” But in drenched communities home scammers are posing as inspectors and gaining access to people’s homes.

identity theft expert: ID Theft Ring Gleaned Socials From Medical Records - 04/08/10 12:02 AM
Robert Siciliano Identity Theft Expert
Medical identity theft occurs when the perpetrator uses your name and in some cases other aspects of your identity, such as insurance information, to obtain medical treatment or medication or to make false claims for treatment or medication. As a result, erroneous or fraudulent entries wind up on your medical records, or sometimes entirely fictional medical records are created in your name. Financial identity theft as it relates to new account fraud is when an identity thief gets the victim’s Social Security number and opens new financial accounts under the victim’s name. There’s very little protection … (1 comments)

identity theft expert: Criminal Hacker Gets 20. Books, Movies and Hollywood Starlet Next - 04/06/10 08:03 AM
Robert Siciliano Identity Theft Expert
Albert Gonzalez and his gang of criminal hackers were responsible for data breaches in retailers and payment processors, with some estimates saying they breached over 230 million records combined. Gonzalez, considered a proficient criminal hacker, provided “dumps,” a term which refers to stolen credit card data, to “carders.” “Carders” are the people who buy, sell, and trade stolen credit card data online.
“Gonzalez and his hacking buddies hacked into computer systems and stole credit card information from TJX, Office Max, DSW and Dave and Buster’s, among other online retail outlets, in one of the largest — … (0 comments)

identity theft expert: Be careful Your PC Isn’t Held for Ransom - 04/05/10 08:31 PM
Computerworld reported that a hacker threatened to expose health data and demanded $10 million from a government agency. The alleged ransom note posted on the Virginia DHP Prescription Monitoring Program site claimed that the hacker had backed up and encrypted more than 8 million patient records and 35 million prescriptions and then deleted the original data. “Unfortunately for Virginia, their backups seem to have gone missing, too.” “Uh oh,” posted the hacker.
Holding data hostage is sometimes done using “ransomware” Otherwise known as “ransom software.” The software gets on your PC as the result of you downloading an infected attachment … (24 comments)

identity theft expert: Dumb Criminals – The Best Way to Get Caught? Call 911! - 04/04/10 10:56 PM
In Daytona Beach, Florida, the dumb criminal capital of America, two Florida teenagers are facing charges after breaking into cars. Apparently one teen’s phone was programmed to call 911 and the phone was smarter than the teens and called (maybe accidentally) 911 to inform law enforcement of the crimes taking place.
Dispatchers from the police department listened in at the duo discussing the cars they were breaking into and the stuff that was worth taking. Seems some info was given that directed law enforcement to the parking lot of a local nightclub where the teens were apprehended. Karma man karma. … (0 comments)

identity theft expert: Is That Portable Device a Data Hazard? - 04/04/10 10:40 PM
Robert Siciliano Identity Theft Expert
According to a survey of London and New York City taxi companies last year revealed that more than 12,500 devices, such as laptops, iPods and memory sticks, are forgotten in taxis every six months. Portable devices that may have troves of sensitive data.
Recent reports of identity data including names, addresses, Social Security numbers on 3.3 million people with student loans was the largest-ever breach of such information and could affect as many as 5% of all federal student-loan borrowed. A company spokesperson said the stolen information was on a portable media device. “It was simple, … (1 comments)

identity theft expert: Beware of Door to Door Conmen - 04/04/10 09:55 PM
There are bazillion scammers using a bazillion ruses to get your money. The lowest of the low are the ones who scam the elderly. These same conmen often do it door to door and can be very dangerous.
Con men posing as city employees seem to be the most effective scam. In one incident 2 men posed as city workers who were trimming trees in a neighborhood. One man would knock on the door and schmooze the resident into allowing him into the home. He would then coax the person into the back area of the home while his partner … (1 comments)

identity theft expert: Is Your Facebook Friend a Fed, or Sex Offender? - 04/01/10 04:18 AM
When you think about it, Facebook is weird. Where else in the world do you call people who you don’t know your friends? I probably have about 10-15 friends. Most are acquaintances and the others 400 are total strangers.
There’s a lot of excessive trust in the Facebook world. People have entirely dropped their sense of cynicism when logged on. They have no reason to distrust. People who are your “Friends” are generally those who you “know, like and trust.” In this world, your guard is as down as it will ever be. You are in the safety of your … (41 comments)

identity theft expert: How to Spend More Money on Home Security - 03/25/10 03:04 AM
Lets face it, if you had it you’d spend it, and what better way than on your families security! In today’s high tech connected world a networked and remotely monitored home security system is the way to go.
Keyless Access: Door locks that require a pincode make it easier to access without fumbling for keys. Many keyless locks are smart and can be set to allow contractors limited one time PIN access.
Remote Control Alarms: For a few extra bucks you can add remote controls to an alarm system that allow you to activate or deactivate from the driveway or … (1 comments)

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Robert Siciliano

Realty Security and Identity Theft Expert Speaker

Boston, MA

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