Feeds

Man gets 3 years in prison for stealing IDs over LimeWire

Dodgy download redux

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

A Washington state man who admitted using the LimeWire file-sharing program to steal tax returns and other sensitive documents has been sentenced to more than three years in federal prison.

Frederick Eugene Wood of Seattle was ordered to serve 39 months for a fraud scheme that prosecutors said was a "particularly pernicious and devious one." In it, Wood would search the hard drives of LimeWire users for files that contained words such as "statement," "account" and "tax.pdf." He would then download tax returns, bank statements, and other sensitive documents and use them to forge counterfeit checks and steal the identity of the individuals who filled out the documents.

Seattle detectives and federal agents found documents on Wood's computers belonging to some 120 victims, according to court documents. During a search of Wood's vehicle, they found eight different driver licenses in his wallet, each bearing Wood's picture with the names, addresses, and birth dates of different individuals.

The case highlights the risk assumed by countless people who install LimeWire or other file sharing software on their computers and don't take the time to properly configure it. It seems a surprisingly large percentage of users share their entire hard drive over the services, rather than a select folder or two containing only the files they want shared.

Wood was an associate of Gregory Thomas Kopiloff, another Seattle man who received four years in prison for a similar fraud scheme. Court documents state that Wood is believed to have taught Kopiloff how to use LimeWire to carry out the scam.

Wood's demise started in November of 2007, when he placed an ad on Craigslist offering a MacBook Pro for sale. Posing as someone named Ken, he accepted a check for $1,500 in exchange for a sealed box that he claimed contained the laptop. When the buyer opened it, he found nothing more than a book and a glass vase.

Wood pleaded guilty to three felony counts of wire fraud, accessing a computer without authorization to further fraud, and aggravated identity theft. In addition to his prison sentence, he was also ordered to pay more than $25,700 in restitution. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Ice cream headache as black hat hacks sack Dairy Queen
I scream, you scream, we all scream 'DATA BREACH'!
Goog says patch⁵⁰ your Chrome
64-bit browser loads cat vids FIFTEEN PERCENT faster!
JLaw, Kate Upton exposed in celeb nude pics hack
100 women victimised as Apple iCloud accounts reportedly popped
NIST to sysadmins: clean up your SSH mess
Too many keys, too badly managed
Scratched PC-dispatch patch patched, hatched in batch rematch
Windows security update fixed after triggering blue screens (and screams) of death
Researchers camouflage haxxor traps with fake application traffic
Honeypots sweetened to resemble actual workloads, complete with 'secure' logins
Attack flogged through shiny-clicky social media buttons
66,000 users popped by malicious Flash fudging add-on
New Snowden leak: How NSA shared 850-billion-plus metadata records
'Federated search' spaffed info all over Five Eyes chums
Three quarters of South Korea popped in online gaming raids
Records used to plunder game items, sold off to low lifes
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Advanced data protection for your virtualized environments
Find a natural fit for optimizing protection for the often resource-constrained data protection process found in virtual environments.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.