Security and Technology Ramblings…

Disclaimer: Most things in this post would be considered a criminal activity if you do them. So, don’t do them.

I always marvel at the things in life that need no verification. The mischief you could cause someone just by making a few phone calls. You’d think you would need proof to make changes. But, surprisingly, all you really need to know is an account number, their name, and maybe their last four of their social security number.

But, before you start telling me how hard it is to gather this info, let me tell you it is not. You would be surprised about what online trails you leave every day. Facebook, Google, Twitter, and other social media sites are not your friends.

In this hi-tech world we live in with solid methods to prove who you are that can be unbreakable, we still have a thousand ways to do things “old school”.

Example…. Go buy (with cash of course) a magic jack IP phone dongle and port the phone number of anyone you choose just by entering it in the website when you set it up. Sure, they can get the phone number back, but it would cause a few weeks worth of pain. There is no process to verify that you actually own the number when you ask to get it to be ported.

Example…. My mother passed away a few weeks ago. In the process of letting various credit cards, utility accounts, and even retirement pay accounts that she had passed, very few asked for more information than I listed above. At least 25% didn’t need a death certificate. Now go prove you aren’t dead!

Example…. If you give anyone your routing and checking numbers, they can go to VistaPrint or anywhere else and have checks printed with your account numbers, but with their name.

Example…. There are millions of subscriptions that you can choose “bill me later” on.

I could keep going with examples….

Have a great day!

PS: Read this book. It’s one of my favorites and it is sure to scare you way more than my post did…

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