Internet fraud and scams have exponentially increased in recent years. There are several reasons for this development which include the expansion of technology and usage of electronic devices in our daily lives.
The fraudsters find different ways to retrieve sensitive or confidential information in order to commit their crimes. For example, they may extract the information by dumpster diving next to corporations and financial institutions. There have been cases where sensitive information of a corporation’s employees was extracted without authorization. They may also engage in “shoulder surfing” which is another way to surreptitiously extract confidential information from the unsuspecting victim. These activities usually take place close to a bank’s ATM in order to steal the victim’s debit card PIN. They can also use what is referred to as a “skimming device” as a way to obtain sensitive information from debit or credit cards. These devices can be placed on ATMs to procure the confidential information without suspicion. The fraudsters can also obtain sensitive or confidential information by breaking and entering into the victim’s property. This way, they can look into the victim’s house or vehicle for valuable items or confidential documents.
There is a long list of internet fraud methods such as auction scams, rental scams, dating scams, lottery scams, and charity scams. The criminals are finding new ways to trick their victims into relinquishing valuable information – e.g., address, telephone, date-of-birth, social security number, debit or credit card number. Social engineering is another method to obtain information which is usually done by gaining the victim’s trust. It has become one of the main methods for extracting valuable information from unsuspecting victims. The internet allows culprits to anonymously communicate with their victims which is the major issue in lawsuits simply because it takes time and effort to launch an investigation. Our law firm is able to unmask the anonymous culprit’s identity by using the proper tools and techniques. We have access to a network of experts and investigators who can help our clients. We have also established relationships with local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies.
The fraudsters are using spam and phishing techniques to promote their activities. They send thousands of unsolicited emails to their victims in hopes of retrieving some kind of valuable information. The unsuspecting victim may respond to the spam message or click on an attachment that will unload the virus onto the victim’s electronic device. Then, the virus extracts and transfers the confidential information to the criminals without the victim’s knowledge or consent. The fraudsters are able to commit what is commonly referred to “pharming” which is when a bogus website is created to emulate the authentic website.
There are various state and federal laws that prohibit these activities. For example, the Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing Act of 2003 (“CAN-SPAM Act”) which is a federal statute, and its state statutory counterparts, prohibit the dissemination of unsolicited electronic messages across the internet. The Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (“CFAA”) which is codified under 18 U.S.C. 1030 also prohibits the unauthorized access to another individual’s electronic devices.
Our law firm investigates internet fraud and online scams for our clients. We have uncovered the true identities of anonymous fraudsters in state and federal lawsuits. It’s important to know your legal rights and responsibilities when it comes to the rules and regulations. Please contact our law firm to speak with an internet attorney at your earliest convenience.