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ID Theft, Computer Security and the Human Factor. Tom Ryan, RU-Camden Law Harold Winshel, Camden Arts & Sciences. Agenda. Identity Theft What is identity theft? Why is it bad? How is it done? What can you do to prevent it? Computer Security - Top 10 best practices Social Engineering

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Id theft computer security and the human factor l.jpg

ID Theft, Computer Security and the Human Factor

Tom Ryan, RU-Camden Law Harold Winshel, Camden Arts & Sciences

Agenda l.jpg

  • Identity Theft

    • What is identity theft?

    • Why is it bad?

    • How is it done?

    • What can you do to prevent it?

  • Computer Security

    - Top 10 best practices

  • Social Engineering

    • Actions & Reactions

Identity theft l.jpg
Identity Theft

  • Prevention

  • Detection

  • Recovery

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How prevalent is it?

  • 10 Million Americans in 2003 (up 41 %)


  • Costs $53 Billion

  • Un-reported costs…

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How does it happen?

  • Most ID theft is done through very low-tech means.

  • With a name, address and a credit card number, and the 3 digit card identifier, most telephone businesses will ship to any address.

  • Very few cross checks

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Why is ID Theft Done?

  • $$$ For financial gain. $$$

Detection l.jpg

  • You start getting collection calls/mail

  • You are denied credit

  • You stop getting mail

  • You start getting new bills for accounts you do not have or services you did not authorize.

  • Your bank account balance drops.

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What you can do to prevent it?

  • Account Information

  • ATM, Credit, and Debit Cards

  • Bills, Bank Statements, and Other Records

  • Calling Cards

  • Checks

  • Credit Reports

  • Mail

  • Trash

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Good practices

  • Photocopy the contents of wallet/purse

  • Photocopy your passport (keep a copy at home and one with you)

  • Empty your wallet/purse of non-essential identifiers, especially your Social Security Card.

  • Do not use any information provided by the people trying to scam you… Look it up yourself.

  • Use a paper crosscut shredder.

  • When on vacation, don’t stop your newspaper.

Recovery l.jpg

  • File a report with the credit provider

  • File a police report

  • Notify the Credit bureaus

  • Notify the FTC

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What you can do if you become a victim?

  • Contact the fraud departments of any one of the three major credit bureaus  to place a fraud alert on your credit file.

  • Ask for new account numbers for accounts that you know or believe have been tampered with or used fraudulently.

  • Close Accounts that have been opened fraudulently.

  • File a police report. Get a copy of the report to submit to your creditors

  • File your complaint with the FTC.

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What will the future bring ?

  • The trend is that it is getting worse

  • Continue with awareness and education

  • Review policies and procedures

  • Improve the security web site

  • Seek input from our user community

    Security is everybody’s business

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Your computer and ID Theft

What you can do to

  • Protect your confidential information

  • Prepare for an incident (just in case)

  • Prevent identity theft

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Your computer and ID theft

  • Protect yourself

    • When ordering online, make sure the site is secure (https://)

  • Protect others

    • Have your antivirus software keeping you up to date

    • Set your system to auto update patches

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Good Computing Practices

  • Encryption (SSL, the lock, SHTTP or HTTPS)

  • Firewall

  • Anti-Adware/Anti-Trojan

  • Wireless

  • P2P file sharing

  • Separate passwords

  • Password “Safe” software

  • E-mail is not secure

  • Disconnect from the internet when not in use

  • Check our security and smoke alarm batteries at the bi-annual time changes (April & November)

  • Do not use phone numbers or web links provided by others

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Good computing practices

  • Use automatic updating anti-virus software (Rutgers Antivirus Delivery Service - RADS)

  • Exercise caution when opening email attachments

  • Select hard to guess passwords and keeping them private

  • Back up important files

  • Download and install operating system update patches

  • Become aware of the risks in file sharing (turn off or password protect)

  • Use a password protected screen saver

  • Lock up your computer when not in use

  • Know how to report a computer abuse incident

  • Protect your computer by using a firewall

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Phishing / Spoofing

  • Sending an email to a user falsely claiming to be an established legitimate enterprise in an effort to scam the user into surrendering private information that will be used for identity theft (

  • Phishing – bait.

  • Spoof – fake the appearance of a popular web site

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Phishing E-mail

  • From: Fleet bank [mailto:[email protected]] Sent: Tuesday, February 10, 2004 6:31 PMTo: [email protected]: To aII Fleet bank users

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Damages to you

  • Time

  • Money

  • Credit rating

  • Reputation

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Damages to Rutgers…

  • Reputation

  • Violation of federal and state laws.

  • Fines

  • Reparations costs

  • Recovery costs

  • Increased prevention costs

  • Georgia Tech release of credit cards to the internet cost them over $1,000,000.

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Links and Resources





    • 1-800-269-0271


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Services available at Rutgers University for Faculty, Staff and Students

  • Help Desk for computer problems

  • Identity Theft 911


  • Computer abuse