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MacFall

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How paranoid are you?
« on: October 15, 2012, 03:32:53 PM »

I recently had a scary brush with ID theft. Some cocksprocket broke into my brother's car where I had (stupidly) left my wallet on the front seat, took my license, social security card (which I had in a custom-made, hidden part of the wallet) and debit card. I never found the rest, but they left those items in the alley behind the house of someone who, thankfully, knows who I am. I got my debit card canceled before they got anything out of me.

But it made me really paranoid and I started looking into security for my electronic stuff. I encrypted everything, and now do just about all my online stuff involving finances with a VPN and TOR, a MAC address altering program, and use PGP to communicate a lot.

It was weird - I actually felt MORE secure once I got my debit card changed and before I started doing that stuff, but once I started I felt like I had to do it all. Now I'm equipped to have a completely anonymous online fingerprint if I wanted to (obviously I'm not doing that now - I have a Facebook and such), and I'm getting more and more worried that maybe I should, although I don't have a really good reason for it other than maybe the government will someday try to round up Ron Paul supporters or something.

Anyone else experiencing this or anything like it?
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John Shaw

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Re: How paranoid are you?
« Reply #1 on: November 15, 2012, 02:44:07 AM »

I've been dealing with what appears to be a $26,000 vehicle purchase under my name for a few months now.

Been a fucking nightmare.

Also, one of our debit cards was used somehow yesterday, $600. That's being resolved.

Very upsetting.
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Diogenes The Cynic

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Re: How paranoid are you?
« Reply #2 on: November 15, 2012, 08:30:14 AM »

I usually use my avatar for things. My business, business card, etc are under one name. My personal life is under another name, and my real name is almost never used at all.
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Laetitia

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Re: How paranoid are you?
« Reply #3 on: November 15, 2012, 08:30:27 AM »

Last January, my two debit cards and two credit cards were all cloned and used to purchase a couple thousand dollars of gas and auto parts, plus a lot of general "stuff" at a department store. Happened over two days, and it wasn't my bank that figured it out - American Express called me.

Got my money back in 48 hours, but spent months dealing with forms, credit bureaus, reports... and am now dealing with a collection agency about a store card accessed using one of the cloned credit cards as an ID. Put fraud alerts on everything. Instead of just getting new card numbers, I had the accounts changed. The store account was closed.

I went through 6 months of 2011 records to figure out where I had used all four cards, and only found one merchant in common. I now use cash when I have to shop there. If the skimmer was there, it's long gone, so it's silly, but it makes me feel better. Well, that, and checking into my activity on all accounts at least once a week. Was every other day for the longest time after the theft.
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analogkid

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Re: How paranoid are you?
« Reply #4 on: November 15, 2012, 11:34:27 PM »

I recently had someone steal my debit card information and withdraw $1,000 from an ATM. I think my info was stolen when I used an ATM with a skimmer at a gas station in Los Angeles.

I got my money back within a few days. New card, new PIN. Luckily it wasn't too difficult to set everything straight.

 
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Diogenes The Cynic

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Re: How paranoid are you?
« Reply #5 on: November 27, 2012, 05:17:08 AM »

I recently had someone steal my debit card information and withdraw $1,000 from an ATM. I think my info was stolen when I used an ATM with a skimmer at a gas station in Los Angeles.

I got my money back within a few days. New card, new PIN. Luckily it wasn't too difficult to set everything straight.

 

My brother owns a bunch of ATM's. He came up with a system to be able to figure out when somebody has used a stolen card to withdraw from one of his ATM's. Its very simple analysis. What has the work amounted to? Nothing. The cops don't fucking care. It pisses the hell out of him.
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