Dont be a victim of Identity Theft
My daughter has just discovered she has been the victim of Identity theft on E Bay.
She was surfing on a Uni wireless internet connection and someone hacked in. Despite Uni connections being supposedly secure....First incorrect assumption.
Identifying her by her Hotmail account, the hacker then trawled her e mails until he found messages from E Bay and realized she was a member. Unfortunately for her, she had the same password for Hotmail and E Bay...Second wrong move. They altered her backup e mail address...
The hacker was then able to use her Hotmail account to access E Bay and fraudulently post several items, Ugg Boots to be precise. In total they made over £500 and all in my daughters unsuspecting name...the only saving grace was that she had suspended her own paypal account some time before, so they did not have access to her bank details. However, this did not prevent them from setting up another Paypal account and attaching it to E Bay.
Despite Hotmail noticing suspicious e mail password altering activity, they notified the hotmail address they were suspicious of and not my daughter, because the hacker was bright enough to alter the back up e mail account.
E Bay noticed suspicious activity and checked on the validity of the seller by contacting my daughters account and asking if it had been hacked into!!! Of course the hacker replied with No!!! And continued on his merry way!
My daughter realized something was very wrong within 24 hours and yet red tape and delays by both E Bay and Hotmail resulted in this person going unchecked for a further 72 hours, giving the hacker ample time to fraudulently obtain over £500 through several two day listings.
1.Change your password often, include numbers and letters. Dont use the same password on multiple sites and accounts.
2.Ensure you have decent anti virus and anti phising software, update and check on possible intrusions daily. Dont assume that Uni wireless is safe because they tell you they have adequate firewalls , it is the unsafest place going!
3.Before you buy, take a good look at the advert. What is the photo like? Does it look as though it has simply been lifted from another commercial site? If so, be wary, a real seller would generally use thier own photo of the actual item.
4.Check the items the seller has sold and bought before. Is this in keeping with thier previous activities? What are the other itmes they are selling? Do they suddenly appear to have gone into business?! Sudden large sums of money going in their direction should make you question whether they are geniune or not.
5.Report all suspicious activity to E Bay immediatly, but be aware...even that is not a fail safe.
The bottom line is stay aware, stay suspicious and stay safe...