White Collar Crime Bill

I was reading a recent article on a white collar crime bill in Canada, and I wanted to share a few things with you. Here are a few quotes from the article

“Fraud can have a devastating impact on the lives of its victims, just as much as if they’d been mugged in an alley,” Nicholson said at a news conference at the Guy-Favreau Complex.

“We’d like to see a restitution or relief program put into place that we proposed to the government where a victim of white-collar crime can go to and seek immediate relief,” Davis said.

“We need this because when your money is stolen and your resources are robbed of, who do you to turn to? We think the government should be there but there are no policy or programs in place.”

I could not agree with this more!  We have been saying for years now that scam and fraud victims deserve the same attention and rights as the person that us mugged on the street.  There are plenty of places to report the scam or fraud to, but as of right now there is still not one source for victims of this crime to turn to for assistance such as emergency funds to live off of while they are recovering from these scams and fraud.

Read more: http://www.cbc.ca/canada/montreal/story/2010/05/04/white-collar-crime-legislation.html#ixzz0nS45OkrE

Did you know . . .

That Facebook recently changed it’s privacy settings? Now they can share your personal information with large companies WITHOUT YOUR APPROVAL! What is the point of having an account with settings so that only certain people can view your account if they are going to give the info to anyone they want.

Senator Al Franken recently asked Facebook to change their policies.  The Electronic Privacy Information Center is also asking the FTC to do something about this issue.

Until Facebook does change their policy you can opt-out of having your information shared with third parities.

You can complete the whole process in a few minutes using the links below and your browser’s ‘back’ button. Here is how:

  1. First, log into Facebook in a new window or tab.
  2. Next, go to the “Instant Personalization” page (under Account/Privacy Settings/Applications and Websites) and uncheck the “allow” box.
  3. To prevent the third parties from accessing your information through your friends who have not opted out, you need to visit Pandora, Microsoft, and Yelp and click on the “Block Application” link in the upper left corner of the page.
  4. Finally, check Facebook’s “Help Center” frequently to see an up-to-date list of applications that need to be individually blocked to maintain your privacy.

Privacy Rights Clearinghouse

The Privacy Rights Clearinghouse is a non-profit organization that focuses on consumer information and consumer advocacy.  They have some great information and alerts that you can sign up for at
http://www.privacyrights.org/privacy-alerts

The founder and director of the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse has contributed to several books dealing with consumer rights and privacy, including The Privacy Rights Handbook.

Happy Birthday IC3

The Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) is celebrating 10 years of crime fighting.

IC3 was established in May 2000 as a partnership between the National White Collar Crime Center (NW3C) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The organization gives victims of cybercrime a convenient and easy-to-use reporting mechanism that alerts authorities of suspected criminal or civil violations. IC3 provides law enforcement and regulatory agencies at all levels a central referral system for complaints involving Internet-related crimes.

“Since its creation in 2000, we have seen the number of complaints coming into IC3 increase year after year. Cybercrime is not going away and, in fact, is only going to continue as criminals become savvier,” said Don Brackman, Director of the NW3C. “We are so proud to be partners with the FBI in operating IC3 to address this growing global issue.”

When scam victims are arrested

Finding out that you have become a victim of a scam is scary enough, but if you are also arrested and being charged with defrauding the bank it becomes a living nightmare.  One of the things that can help is understanding the definition of some of the words being throw around by lawyers and other officers of the courts.

Arraignment: An arraignment is not a trial, it is where you are read the charges and asked to enter a plea (guilty, not guilty).  It is at arraignment that the first court date is usually scheduled.  Make sure that you have an attorney present at your arraignment.
Burden of Proof:  The party that files the complaint carries the burden of proof, which is proving that there is enough evidence for a case.  In many cases where a scam victim is being charged with trying to defraud the bank and being a willing participate in the scam, the only “proof” that the prosecution has is that the defendant presented a counterfeit document.
Discovery: The discovery is the pre-trial exchange of information between attorneys.
Indictment: This is a document that basically sums up the case . . . the charges, the people involved, the court in which the case will be heard.
Indictment: This is a document that basically sums up the case . . . the charges, the people involved, the court in which the case will be heard.

Click and Trick

Click and Trick schemes, also called “data pass”, occur when a customer goes online to make a legitimate purchase and then agrees to a SECOND transaction without knowing it.  Because the customer does not need to enter their credit card information they may even believe they are accepting a free trial of a product or service and it is not until they see the charges on their credit card to they know that it was not really “free”.

This is just another reason that we should all be careful of what we click on when we are online, and monitor our credit card statements closely to make sure no surprise charges show up.

MyMoney.gov

MyMoney.gov is the Federal Government’s website dedicated to helping Americans understand more about their money – how to save it, invest it, and manage it to meet their personal goals. You can use the resources on this site to learn how to manage your money better – and we hope you’ll share what you learn with others.

There are sections of this website devoted to
Knowing your consumer rights
Scams and Fraud

Shop at Amazon

Do you ever shop on Amazon? I know that I do.

Did you know that when you shop at Amazon you can help support Scam Victims United? That’s right! With ANY purchase you make at Amazon you can support Scam Victims United. All you need to do is go to Amazon through our special Scam Victims United link and then Amazon will know we referred you to them, and we will get credit for that. It is that easy!

It does not matter what you are buying, just go to Amazon through our link, and you help support us. If you are a regular Amazon shopper you might want to bookmark the link so that you can find it easily.

I am dying . . .

Here is an email that showed up in my spam folder.

From: jamesbradley08@web.de

To: jamesbradley@web.de

From: James Bradley

Reply to: jamesbradley04@gmail.com

Hi, my name is James Bradley from Sydney, Australia, I am an E.C. patient, and presently hospitalized, my doctor says I have a few months to live, and I desire to stay within the confinement of my hospital room and live out my last days on earth quietly. I asked that my hospital room be equipped with a laptop so that I can take care of some outstanding issues. One of which is my desire to donate a sizable amount of money to cancer research institutes and other deserving charity organizations, so I decided to go online and find some one remotely afar who can receive the funds from where it is presently deposited, and assist me in disbursing the funds to cancer research institutes and other deserving charity organizations. By the way the full meaning of (E.C.) is Esophageal Cancer, and don’t mind the time taken from your busy schedule to work with me on this sole act of charity, because you will surely be compensated.

Indicate your wiliness to assist me by sending an email to my private email box (jamesbradley04@gmail.com) by doing so I will be able to send you more details.

Kind Regards,

James Bradley

This is an angle that many scammers use . . . they play on a person’s sense of kindness and wanting to do the right thing . . . helping a man fulfill his dying wish by assisting him in donating his money to a charity.  If it were true, it would be a very kind gesture.  Here are some of the tips that it is not real.

  1. The use of several different email addresses between the from, reply to and the address within the email.  Scammers use multiple emails addresses because they may be spoofing a real address, because their email accounts get turned off once reported for spam so they need a back up, or because of the way their “ring” works . . . one person could be sending all of the emails while a totally different person works the scams once the victim is hooked in, and that second person is the one on the receiving end of the reply to address.
  2. He says that he only has a few days to live, but he is using it to email strangers?  How does he even know you will see this email before he dies?  Some people don’t check email daily, like I do.
  3. If a person truly wanted to donate all of their money to charity, they could easily contact the charity directly to set up this donation.  They would not need the help of a third party stranger to do this.