Nothing hits home more effectively than real stories from real people. Online security threats are not only statistics -- people just like those in the Hofstra community suffer the consequences of digital crimes everyday. Others have near-misses that can also be very instructive.
- Forbes Magazine contributor John Wasik details how his stolen Social Security number (the result of charity work, no less) resulted in a tax-filing mess: http://www.forbes.com/sites/johnwasik/2014/06/05/how-i-was-hacked-by-a-tax-scam-safeguards-you-can-employ-now/
- Developer Naoki Hiroshima was one of the first to secure a Twitter username back when the micro-blogging service went live. Read how a hacker used bits of Hiroshima's personal information to hijack his other accounts and coerce him into forefeiting his very valuable handle: https://medium.com/@N/how-i-lost-my-50-000-twitter-username-24eb09e026dd.
- Gary Warner, a security expert who blogs about cyber crime, recently discussed his unsatisfactory experiences with the criminal justice systemafter becoming the victim of credit card fraud. See the TEDx video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MPMr5jPwA7I
- An administrator at Hofstra relays this story:
Since my son would be in South Korea for 3 months, I recently applied for a credit card that would have no service fee attached when used overseas. I received two cards (one in my name & one in my son's name) after my son had already left. I sent him a care package with books & candy and included his card in the box. He received the box intact with no evidence it had been tampered with. A week later I looked at my account online and saw the one and only charge on that account was for $950 to State Farm Insurance. Luckily neither of us had ever used the card so this charge very easily caught me attention. I called the bank and informed them I had no accounts with State Farm and had not made the transaction. Later I received a letter from the bank saying the temporary credit they issued to me was now permanent and I was not responsible for the $950. If this had happened on a card I use more frequently I wonder if I would have caught it in a timely manner. I'd like to know whose name was on the policy purchased from State Farm with my credit card.
- A Computer Center staff member at Hofstra remembers this incident:
I was at Disney World during Thanksgiving when I tried to use my card and it was declined. I knew that something was wrong so I called up customer service. They told me that since I used it at a small gas station in Georgia they froze my account. The representative on the phone said that during Thanksgiving, I had never used my credit card off of Long Island, and that it seemed suspicious that I was in Georgia. They froze the account immediately in case my identity did get stolen.