Tag Archives: identity theft

Euphemism for the sake of reporting

It happens, there is no fault, at least often enough there isn’t one. In this case I have issues and it is withe the BBC who gives us (at https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-wales-63649695) ‘Gambling: Boy, 16, lost thousands after seeing advert’. In this, did he lose it, or did he steal it? Lets look at the reported facts. In the first we are given “Nick Phillips, from Swansea, said the boy opened an account in his father’s name an hour after a match.” As such the boy committed identity theft. Then we get “after seeing the gambling ad”, here we have a problem. Yes it is an advertisement and we can argue that the advertiser is not at fault, yet the ‘boy’ needed an hour to arrange for the opening of an account. So where were the checks and balances? Why is there no mention of the lack of checks and balances by the banks? Then we get (of course) the reference to loot boxes. I do not agree with these assessments, but I get that some see it different than me and that I fine. Then the BBC gives us the part that is indeed important. With: “Every video game console has a parental or family settings area. One of the things I really like is the ability to say ‘can this account make transactions? can it spend money? Also, how much can it spend?’” That is true, as such safeties can be imposed and I am fine with that, but the stellar amount of non-accountability is not OK. The boy was a thief and it had nothing to do with the advertisement. He took an hour to get an identity and get spending, according to the article thousands. I do not see, or agree with ‘this poor lad’, no it is ‘the degenerate criminal’. OK, the word ‘degenerate’ is optional, but it is a setting that we need to heed. In an hour a family member took the identity of another family member and how was that possible? How was it possible that credit cards, identity papers were so readily available? They mentioned he had a gambling problem, so why were certain blocks not in place? And we still haven’t seen anything on HOW it was done in an hour and what facilities gave rise to this stage? I am assuming that there were bank issues, but that is merely an assumption. I reckon that the credit card, if suddenly a certain amount goes into a non usual place alarms go off, did they? 

So why is there such a lack of information, and we see ‘poor boy’, references to loot boxes and whilst we agree that kids need to be protected, my personal view is that if they were so easily swayed to crime, the problem resides equally somewhere else and in this the parent get the blame. To be honest, I am not entirely sure that this is fair, but when a 16 year old can overcome legal loopholes and enter the field as an identity thief, we can agree that the parents failed to some degree at this point. I am not willing to fully blame them as peer pressure could be massive at that age (I was a teenager once, yes it is true, I was). 

But there is a lot more going on and the BBC (as I personally see it) intentionally decided not to inform you on that. And I wonder why.

I have no issues with euphemism. There is nothing to gain by telling someone that their child was decapitated. It makes sense to phrase it more like ‘He got ahead of himself and was unfortunately a casualty of events’, but when factual parts are misplaced and not reported on, is it still to serve the greater good, or to cater to an agenda? I will let you decide.

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Cyber Security Impressions

Here I am, a little after 23:00. I am in a decent level of agony as I hurt my back and the painkillers do not work, at least it is having no effect. In this I also have been forgoing sleep since Saturday (pain levels tend to do just that). Yet I just had an idea. I just figured out another usage for my 5G devices. A setting to limit and downsize credit card fraud and identity theft. I saw some of the damage a few days ago and it kept it in the back of my head. 

Now, let’s take a little detour to anti viral solutions about two decades ago. In those days one solution was to create thumbprints of every file, the checkmarks would give an indication that a file was optionally infected. 

Now let’s take a step to tomorrow. Most people are wage slaves. Often working from 8am to 8pm, and their routine changes to the smallest degree. Now consider that you could create a thumbprint of your day, not in detail but to some degree. Now consider that the credit card thief would try to make a purchase somewhere in town, but the thumbprint of you will not match up. More important when you set up your daily station and upload that (encrypted) to your bank server your bank can check whether you were anywhere near the purchase. Consider that credit card fraud surpassed $24,000,000,000 in 2018 and it is only getting worse. Yes, you can wait for the bank to return your cash or you can be proactive and that is the station where the daily file is encrypted and it does not have specifics, merely connect points, yet those points will not fit the credit card thief and that is where we can stop him proactively. More important, it could also give banks clues on HOW and more important WHERE the credit card theft was done. Why did no one think of this earlier? Perhaps before 5G the system would be overly taxed. I do not know, I am merely  trying to see if this could be the optional solution and my hardware is already on station to make a mark, yet I am not the only one. Mobile phones could easily have a similar function, so there are alternatives and that is good. This is an issue we should all try to solve, not to simply see if it is a moneymaker. On the other hand preventing loss is also a moneymaking solution, it makes money for banks and it stops YOU from losing money you might optionally not get back, or get back after a long delay. And as this solution gets better it would be near direct resolutions making the thief the loser as we all want it to be.

Now at first it will not be the perfect solution, yet as the people submit more and more thumbprints, deeper learning systems will be able to tell more rapidly and more quickly if the purchase was for real and done by the actual purchase. It could even set the stage where kids cannot go on a spending spree with mommy’s or daddy’s credit card. So far I can only see upsides and that is always nice. I am still trying to see if there are downsides, and perhaps I will find 1-2, but at present there are seemingly none. 

A simple (and painful) day and I found another way to stop credit card theft, what a lovely way to start Wednesday, which started 18 minutes ago.

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