identity theft

  Phrixos 13:56 27 Jan 2008

With good firewall and antivirus programmes,I have been as diligent as I think anyone can be, in maintaining my digital security--and yet I find my identity being stolen. Going on the fact that I find myself receiving sexual spam and that only looks to be from me myself, it looks as if my name is out there, with even my full email address given, polluting everyone else's mailbox with this crap.

Granted, on the scale of things domestic, I do a fair amount of buying on the web, but I don't give my details out to sites that look suspicious. Just ordinary stuff. (Except, I must say, Ebay sellers who, God knows, could be anybody. What about that, Ebay? Got any comments?)

I know, I could abandon that address, but what then, keep abandoning address after address--with all the headache that entails of notifying everybody? Surely there must be a more effective way. IN any event, that would not stop my name being used.

Anyone got any ideas how I might combat this?
Can it be fought, at all?


  jack 14:53 27 Jan 2008

There are many way to be got at. so.
there are many ways to protect your self.
1. As you said several addresses for personal mail/ for business mail/ just for surfing.
Easier still is this way.
Go to Start/right click on the E-mail Client[OE/Thunderbird what ever] and click on remove from list.
This means when you fire up your computer the E Mail client does not start up.
Now when next you go on line go to Your ISP home page log on and go to your mail box. Read your mail there.
Delete what you do not want. you could reply to some from there even.
Then when satisfied log off and fire up the E-mail program
Only the mail you want will then come in
Long Winded ?
Not really you wont be deleting a load of stuff you do not want from your inbox.
You won't be getting infected stuff.

  Phrixos 15:16 27 Jan 2008

Thanks, Jack, but your advice only deals with the troublesome spam reaching MY inbox.It doesn't stop my name being used to send this sh*t to what obviously is countless others--and soiling my name in the process.

I note that when this spam arrives, it is uniformly advanced by an (often obviously fictious) three-pronged name, such as Norwad C. Bumbleweed. What bothers me is that in arriving in my own inbox, it had MY name and MY email address as the sender!

Any more ideas out there?


  bremner 17:09 27 Jan 2008

This is not really a case of identity theft. None of your details have been taken simply your email address.

It is likely that someone, who has your email address in their address book, has been subject to an infection as a consequence their machine is being used as a bot and is sending out email.

There is nothing you can do other than what Jack suggests.

  Phrixos 19:34 27 Jan 2008

Not identity theft? Uh, excuse me, but what do I say to, for instance, some reporter or investigator, or, more likely, some (justifiably irate) parent of the doubtless hundres of thousands of recipients, who writes to ME demanding to know how "I" justify sending out this material and in this manner? They have my name--which is not a common one--and it has now been associated with sex-spam. I can't yet say this WILL happen--but I can forsee it.

"Simply" my email address, indeed.

I hope what you say, that there is nothing I can do, proves untrue. Meanwhile, I can dream of what tortures I would inflict on these b**tards, were I to find myself alone in a room with them for ten minutes. More, I would include in that select group, those who SOLD my email address to them.

It seeming to have been established, that "there is nothing I can do", I see my post has degenerated, regretably, into a rant. Time to close it--with this thought.

It's time someone with the skills set about figuring out what to do!


  Forum Editor 23:49 27 Jan 2008

that have to be asterisked - it's not necessary, and normally I would delete any posts that contain them; we have a strict rule against any form of bad language in this forum.

The fact that someone has your name and email address does not amount to identity theft, irritating as it may be. The advice you've been given by both jack and bremner is good - your address is being spoofed, probably without the knoowledge of the person whose machine is being used for the purpose, and as you've realised, there's nothing whatsoever you can do about it.

In a while the emails will stop. How long it will be before that happens is impossible to say, but it will stop.

  Phrixos 09:33 28 Jan 2008

Apologies to all. At least it is good to hear that this nuisance will stop. Hopefully before it does any damage.

One last thought on "identity theft", concerns a remark made by, I think, President Carter. "If you loose your job, its a recession. If I loose my job, its a Depression."


  MC2006 11:55 28 Jan 2008

I had this problem last year, where my domain name was being used to send out spam, I kept getting bounced emails coming back at me.

It wasn't until I happened to connect my external hard drive to another computer that Symantic found it and got rid of the offending software that somehow had installed itself on the drive. Since then I've had no problems.

Might be worth running a full scan.

Hope this helps


  feltkitten 21:00 13 Feb 2008

People tend to assume that identity theft happens when people go through your bins and get your old bills and statements. But according to an article I was reading on the site mentioned below one of the areas of greatest risk is when people don't dispose of their computer correctly.

Lots of people keep very sensitive information on their PC - passwords being just one example!

It's really important not to overlook the data you store on your PC!

Here's the site I found:

click here

  jack 08:28 14 Feb 2008

Carelessly disposing of an older computer either by passing it on to a friend/relative or others with simple deletion of your data has potential for future problems- because all such 'deleted' data is recoverable by those to inclined.
The only sure way is to destroy the hard drive physically with a large hammer.

  lofty29 12:34 16 Feb 2008

I thought you could buy a cd that when ran completely wipes a hdd by replacing everything with random 0 and 1's

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