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    1. #1
      Jahness's Avatar
      Jahness is offline OniOni Warrior

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      Arrow Cell Phone Records for Sale


      0 Not allowed! Not allowed!
      Cell Phone Records for Sale

      Online Data Gets Personal: Cell Phone Records for Sale

      By Jonathan Krim
      Washington Post Staff Writer
      Friday, July 8, 2005; D01

      They're not just after your credit card or Social Security numbers.
      Fueled by the ease of online commerce, snoops are on the trail of other
      personal information, too. One of the hottest markets: records of phone
      calls, especially from cell phones.

      A tool long used by law enforcement and private investigators to help
      locate criminals or debt-skippers, phone records are a part of the sea
      of personal data routinely bought and sold online in an Internet-driven,
      I-can-find-out-anything-about-you world. Legal experts say many of the
      methods for acquiring such information are illegal, but they receive
      scant attention from authorities.

      Think your mate is cheating? For $110, Locatecell.com will provide you
      with the outgoing calls from his or her cell phone for the last billing
      cycle, up to 100 calls. All you need to supply is the name, address and
      the number for the phone you want to trace. Order online, and get
      results within hours.

      Carlos F. Anderson, a licensed private investigator in Florida, offers
      a similar service for $165, for all major telephone carriers.
      "This report provides all the calls with dates, times, and duration on
      the billing statement," according to Anderson's Web site, which adds,
      "Incoming Calls and Call Location are provided if available."
      Learning who someone talked to on the phone cannot enable the kind of
      financial fraud made easier when a Social Security or credit card
      number is purloined. Instead, privacy advocates say, the intrusion is more
      personal.

      "This is a person's associations," said Daniel J. Solove, a George
      Washington University Law School professor who specializes in privacy
      issues. "Who their physicians are, are they seeing a psychiatrist,
      companies they do business with . . . it's a real wealth of data to
      find out the people that a person interacts with." Such records could be used by criminals, such as stalkers or abusive spouses trying to find victims.

      Unlike Social Security numbers, which are on many public documents that
      have been scooped up for years by data brokers, the only repository of
      telephone call records is the phone companies.
      Wireless carriers say they are aware that unauthorized people seek to
      get their customers' call records and sell them, but the companies say they
      take steps to prevent it.

      "There are probably 100 such sites" known to security officials at
      Verizon Wireless that offer to sell phone records, said Jeffrey Nelson,
      a company spokesman, who said Verizon is always trying to respond to
      abusive practices. He said that the company views all such activity as
      illegal and that "we have historically, and will continue to, change
      policies to reflect the changing nature of criminal activity," though
      he declined to be specific.

      Mark Siegel, a spokesman for Cingular Wireless, said his company
      constantly is on guard against people trying to get at customer
      information. But he called the acquisition of call records "an
      infinitesimally small problem" at his firm. Some experts in the
      field aren't so sure. "Information security by carriers to protect
      customer records is practically nonexistent and is routinely
      defeated," said Robert Douglas, a former private investigator
      and now a privacy consultant who has tracked the issue for
      several years.

      Experts say data brokers and private investigators who offer cell phone
      records for sale probably get them using one of three techniques.
      They might have someone on the inside at the carrier who sells the
      data. Spokesmen for the telephone companies said strict rules prohibiting
      such activity make this unlikely. But Joel Winston, associate director of
      the Federal Trade Commission's Financial Practices Division, said other
      types of data-theft investigations have shown that "finding someone
      on the inside to bribe is not that difficult."

      Another method is "pretexting," in which the data broker or investigator pretends to be the cell phone account holder and persuades the
      carrier's employees to release the information. The availability of Social
      Security numbers makes it easier to convince a customer service agent that the caller is the account holder.

      Finally, someone seeking call data can try to get access to consumer
      accounts online. Telephone companies, like other service firms, are encouraging their customers to manage their accounts over the Internet. Typically, the online capability is set up in advance, waiting to be activated by the customer. But many customers never do.

      If the person seeking the records can figure out how to activate online
      account management in the name of a real customer before that customer
      does, the call records are there for the taking. Federal law expressly prohibits pretexting for financial data -- which at one time was a primary means of stealing credit card and other account information -- but does not cover telephone records, which are covered by a patchwork of state and federal laws governing access to personal information.

      Some privacy advocates argue that the federal pretexting law needs to
      be broadened. At the very least, "there need to be audit trails to detect employee access to this personal information and a data retention schedule that mandates deletion of records" after a certain period of time, said
      Chris Jay Hoofnagle, West Coast director of the Electronic Privacy
      Information Center.

      The center filed a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission
      yesterday against one data broker, Intelligent e-Commerce Inc.
      of Encinitas, Calif., saying it misrepresented its right to obtain the information. The firm, which operates the Web site http://www.bestpeoplesearch.com , advertises a variety of
      personal data for sale, including cell phone records.

      The company, which says on its Web site that it uses a licensed private
      investigator to get the information, said through its lawyer that it
      seeks to comply with all local, state and federal laws. Attorney Larry
      Slade said he does not know how the company acquires the phone records.
      Phone companies view all these tactics as illegal, even if they are
      used to help track down criminal activity. Instead, carriers say, they
      require court orders before releasing customer records.

      If someone uses pretexting to gain access to records, "these people are
      acting criminally, posing as someone they are not," Nelson said. He
      added that Verizon is preparing legal action against one data provider.
      The FTC views pretexting as a deceptive practice even without a
      specific ban on its use for telephone records, Winston said.

      But he said the agency has never taken such a case to court and does
      not know how widespread the problem is. He said the FTC must focus its
      resources on the practices of data thieves that can cause the most
      damage to large numbers of consumers, such as financial fraud.
      Many of the vendors of call records are unregulated data brokers, such
      as Data Find Solutions Inc. of Knoxville, Tenn., which operates
      Locatecell.com. Company officials did not return calls seeking comment.
      At the Florida office of private investigator Anderson, a man who
      answered the phone and identified himself only as Mike said, "I don't
      really think we're going to reveal our sources" of phone records.
      "There's a lot of ways of doing it."

      At Reliatrace Locate Services of Wisconsin, a man who declined to give
      his name said only that his firm buys the data from another firm.
      There is active debate within the private investigator community about
      the propriety of getting phone records. In at least one online
      discussion group for the industry, some members defended the practice as
      legitimate while others said it was illegal, according to transcripts provided to
      The Washington Post. "I do not know of any legal way to obtain a person's telephonic history," Robert Townsend, head of the National Association of Legal Investigators, said in an interview. Townsend added that he thinks only a small minority of licensed investigators engage in the practice of acquiring and selling the data.

      [Washington Post]
      washingtonpost.com
      Posted In The Spirit of Learning & Sharing
      One Love & Respect Always

      ***************************************
      The Quest for knowledge stops at the grave.
      HIM Emperor Haile Selassie I.


      If you fail to prepare,
      you are preparing to fail!


      Mind what you want, because someone wants your mind.

      Working together, the ants ate the elephant.


    2. #2
      RecoveringAA's Avatar
      RecoveringAA is offline Warrior

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      amazing...not really


      0 Not allowed! Not allowed!
      Greetings Jahness and Akpe for this valuable information.

      It's amazing the length's evil will go to...evil intentions, deceiving, criminal even.....



      Just Amazing.....


      thanks for allowing me to share

      In Love of Afrikans home and abroad

    3. #3
      Jahness's Avatar
      Jahness is offline OniOni Warrior

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      Arrow


      0 Not allowed! Not allowed!
      Quote Originally Posted by RecoveringAA
      Greetings Jahness and Akpe for this valuable information.

      It's amazing the length's evil will go to...evil intentions, deceiving, criminal even.....



      Just Amazing.....


      thanks for allowing me to share

      In Love of Afrikans home and abroad
      Greetings Sister Joanie!

      Welcome to the PC Tech Forum. I agree with you, evil people
      would go to any lengths to get what they want.

      What makes it even more frustrating is that it is so easy for
      these wicked people to get ahold of our personal information.

      Then to add fuel to the fire, our personal info is for sale to
      the highest bidder for further misuse and abuse.

      Thanks for stopping by sis, I appreciate your input!

      Peace!
      Posted In The Spirit of Learning & Sharing
      One Love & Respect Always

      ***************************************
      The Quest for knowledge stops at the grave.
      HIM Emperor Haile Selassie I.


      If you fail to prepare,
      you are preparing to fail!


      Mind what you want, because someone wants your mind.

      Working together, the ants ate the elephant.


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