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Monday, March 30, 2009

#584 Privacy risks of electronics

Thanks, Ted and Priscilla for this email. While it may not be entirely true, it does give one pause. There are Snopes links to gain further information.

A couple of weeks ago a friend told me that someone she knew had their car broken into while they were at a football match. Their car was parked on the green which was adjacent to the football stadium and specially allotted to football fans. Things stolen from the car included a garage door remote control, some money and a GPS which had been prominently mounted on the dashboard.

When the victims got home, they found that their house had been ransacked and just about everything worth anything had been stolen.

The thieves had used the GPS to guide them to the house. They then used the garage remote control to open the garage door and gain entry to the house. The thieves knew the owners were at the football game, they knew what time the game was scheduled to finish and so they knew how much time they had to clean up the house.
It would appear that they had brought a truck to empty the house of its contents.

GPS Burglary Citation:

MOBILE PHONE I never thought of this...

This lady has now changed her habit of how she lists her names on her mobile phone after her handbag was stolen. Her handbag, which contained her cell phone, credit card, wallet...etc...was stolen. 20 minutes later when she called her hubby, from a pay phone telling him what had happened, hubby says 'I received your text asking about our Pin number and I've replied a little while ago.' When they rushed down to the bank, the bank staff told them all the money was already withdrawn. The thief had actually used the stolen cell phone to text 'hubby' in the contact list and got hold of the pin number.. Within 20 minutes he had withdrawn all the money from their bank account.

Moral of the lesson:

Do not disclose the relationship between you and the people in your contact list. Avoid using names like Home, Honey, Hubby, Sweetheart, Dad, Mom, etc.... And very importantly, when sensitive info is being asked through texts, CONFIRM by calling back. Also, when you're being text by friends or family to meet them somewhere, be sure to call back to confirm that the message came from them. If you don't reach them, be very careful about going places to meet 'family and friends' who text you.


Cell Phone Citation:



Sandee (Comedy +) said...

The thieves are out in record numbers. I live in California and identity theft is rampant. I can't stand thieves.

Have a terrific day. :)

Christina said...

Even if the stories are not true, they make good points.

Puss-in-Boots said...

I don't have a GPS so I can't understand how the thief knew where they lived. Surely they don't have their address on the GPS do they? What if they want to find their way to a destination from some place other than their home? Still, even if the stories aren't real, they're a good lesson to learn.

Skunkfeathers said...

I'm not a good target for thieves. I don't make it easy for them when I'm gone (location, location, location). I'd make it downright deadly to confront me at home.

Karen said...

Great info Jack, thx for posting it!

Peter said...

Good lessons to be learned there Jack, seems the crooks are becoming more inventive in their methods.

Merle said...

Hello Jack ~~ Good information there. I don't have a mobile phone. Glad you liked the story of Faith the dog. An inspiring one.
Thank you for your kind words. I have Peter here visiting for a few days, which is nice, We get on well.
Take care, Regards, Merle.

Sage said...

There are always drawbacks to things that are suppose to make our lives easier... Been a while since I've been here.

Sarah Sofia Ganborg said...

good to know!