NSA Monitoring U.S. Based Internet Servers

Two well respected newspapers, The Washington Post and the Guardian, have published articles about the United States government spying on it’s own citizens. The National Security Agency and the FBI are collecting directly from the servers of these U.S. Service Providers: Microsoft, Yahoo, Google, Facebook, PalTalk, AOL, Skype, YouTube, Apple.


The National Security Agency and the FBI are tapping directly into the central servers of nine leading U.S. Internet companies, extracting audio and video chats, photographs, e-mails, documents, and connection logs that enable analysts to track foreign targets, according to a top-secret document obtained by The Washington Post.


Find out about connecting to the Internet through a secure private server.

Top 10 FBI News Stories

  1. Headquarters: FBI Mourns the Loss of Two Special Agents Killed in Training ExerciseSpecial Agents Christopher Lorek and Stephen Shaw, members of the FBI’s elite Hostage Rescue Team, were tragically killed Friday, May 17 during a training exercise off the coast of Virginia Beach, Virginia.
  2. Headquarters: Three Defendants Plead Guilty to Participating in Ambush Murder and Attempted Murder of ICE Agents in MexicoJulian Zapata Espinoza, a commander in the Los Zetas Cartel, led the attempted hijacking of an armored government vehicle that resulted in the death of Special Agent Jaime Zapata and serious injury of Special Agent Victor Avila.
  3. New York: NYPD Detective Arrested for Computer HackingEdwin Vargas is alleged to have hired an e-mail hacking service to obtain log-in credentials for at least 43 personal e-mail accounts and one cellular phone belonging to at least 30 different individuals, including 21 who are affiliated with the NYPD.
  4. New Haven: Congressional Campaign Finance Director Convicted for Role in Illegal Contribution Scheme 

    Robert Braddock, Jr. was convicted of multiple offenses stemming from a scheme to direct illegal campaign contributions from Roll Your Own smoke shop owners to Christopher Donovan, a candidate for the U.S. House of Representatives.

  5. New York: Three University Researchers Charged for Conspiring to Receive Bribes from Chinese Company and Chinese Government-Supported Research InstituteYudong Zhu, Xing Yang, and Ye Li, who worked on improving MRI technology at a university in New York, were each charged with one count of commercial bribery in connection with a conspiracy to receive payments in exchange for providing non-public information about research conducted at the university.
  6. Indianapolis: Former Chicago Police Officer and Two Members of Latin Kings Street Gang Sentenced in Racketeering ConspiracyAntonio C. Martinez, Jr. received 144 months in prison for committing armed robberies with another officer on behalf of a Latin Kings gang member—in some instances while in uniform and driving police-issued vehicles.
  7. Kansas City: Independence Woman Indicted for Violating Civil Rights of African American Family by Torching Their HomeVictoria A. Cheek-Herrera and a co-conspirator allegedly drew a swastika and wrote the words “White Power” on the driveway of a home before setting it on fire with a Molotov cocktail.
  8. Birmingham: Twenty-One People Arrested in Huntsville-Based Drug Trafficking Conspiracy 

    The defendants were allegedly part of overlapping drug rings, one distributing powder and crack cocaine and the other marijuana, in Madison County.

  9. Atlanta: Members of International Sex Trafficking Ring IndictedArturo Rojas-Coyotl, Odilon Martinez-Rojas and Severiano Martinez-Rojas, all of Tlaxcala, Mexico, were indicted on charges of sex trafficking and alien harboring for allegedly using force, fraud, and coercion to compel three women to engage in prostitution in Atlanta and Norcross, Georgia.
  10. Louisville: Taylor County Man Sentenced to 110 Years in Prison for Production and Possession of Child Pornography — Tony Edwin Davis enticed and coerced two girls under 5 years of age to engage in sexually explicit conduct for the purpose of producing a visual depiction.

Internet Crime Report

More Than 280,000 Complaints of Online Criminal Activity Reported in 2012

Fairmont, WV — The Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) released the 2012 Internet Crime Report—a summary of reported fraudulent activity, including data and statistics. In 2012, the IC3 received and processed 289,874 complaints, averaging more than 24,000 complaints per month. Unverified losses reported to IC3 rose 8.3 percent over the previous year.

A new section in this year’s report includes charts for each of the 50 states, detailing demographic, complaint and dollar loss data. The section allows for easy comparisons and convenient reference. Additional content includes frequently reported Internet crimes, case highlights, and graphs that explain the lifecycle of a complaint. The most common complaints received in 2012 included FBI impersonation e-mail scams, various intimidation crimes, and scams that used computer “scareware” to extort money from Internet users. The report gives detailed information about these and other commonly perpetrated scams in 2012. The IC3 works to educate the public and law enforcement about fraud trends.

“The 2012 Internet Crime Report reveals both the volume and the scope of Internet crime, as well as the efforts of IC3 and law enforcement to combat these crimes,” said NW3C Director Don Brackman. “As technology continues to advance, so will our efforts to stay one step ahead of cyber criminals.”

Richard A. McFeely, executive assistant director of the FBI’s Criminal, Cyber, Response, and Services Branch, said: “Criminals are increasingly migrating their fraudulent activities from the physical world to the Internet. Computer users who suspect or become victims of online fraud schemes—including suspicious e-mails, fraudulent Web sites and Internet crimes—should report them to the IC3. The IC3 analyzes and makes connections among these reports and packages them for potential action by law enforcement.”

IC3 is a partnership between the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the National White Collar Crime Center (NW3C) and the Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA). Since its start in 2000, IC3 has become a mainstay for victims reporting Internet crime and a way for law enforcement to be notified of such crimes. IC3′s service to the law enforcement community includes federal, state, tribal, local, and international agencies that are combating Internet crime.

Bank Of America Phishing Scam Virus

WARNING: Beware of a Word Document attachment being emailed under the subject of BOA Merchant Statement. The attached .doc file is a virus.

Attached (DOC|WORD file|document|file) is your Bank of America Paymentech electronic Merchant Billing Statement.
If you need assistance, please (contact|message|call) your Account Executive or call Merchant Services at the telephone number listed on your statement.
PLEASE DO NOT RESPOND BY USING REPLY. This (email|mail) is sent from an unmonitored email address, and your response will not be received by Bank of America Paymentech.
Bank of America Paymentech will not be responsible for any liabilities that may result from or relate to any failure or delay caused by Bank of America Paymentech’s or the Merchant’s email service or otherwise. Bank of America Paymentech recommends that Merchants continue to monitor their statement information regularly.
Learn more about Bank of America Paymentech Solutions, LLC payment processing services at Bank of America.
THIS MESSAGE IS CONFIDENTIAL. This e-mail message and any attachments are proprietary and confidential information intended only for the use of the recipient(s) named above. If you are not the intended recipient, you may not print, distribute, or copy this message or any attachments. If you have received this communication in error, please notify the sender by return e-mail and delete this message and any attachments from your computer.
Attachment Converted: [your computer]

Phishing Attacks on Telecommunication Customers

Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) —

The Internet Crime Complaint Center has received numerous reports of phishing attacks targeting various telecommunication companies’ customers. Individuals receive automated telephone calls that claim to be from the victim’s telecommunication carrier. Victims are directed to a phishing site to receive a credit, discount, or prize ranging from $300 to $500.

The phishing site is a replica of one of the telecommunication carrier’s sites and requests the victims’ log-in credentials and the last four digits of their Social Security numbers. Once victims enter their information, they are redirected to the telecommunication carrier’s actual website. The subject then makes changes to the customer’s account.

The IC3 urges the public to be cautious of unsolicited telephone calls, e-mails and text messages, especially those promising some type of compensation for supplying account information. If you receive such an offer, verify it with the business associated with your account before supplying any information. Use the information supplied on your account statement to contact the business.

Facebook Online Safety Campaign

HARRISBURG, PA – Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen G. Kane has joined 18 other state attorneys general in a new online safety campaign with the popular social networking site, Facebook.

The initiative, which was formally unveiled at the National Association of Attorneys General’s Presidential Summit on “Privacy in the Digital Age,” provides teenagers and parents with tips and resources to better manage with information they share – and with whom they share it – both on Facebook and the Internet.

Attorney General Kane joined with Facebook Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg in taping a public service announcement entitled, “What You Can Do to Control Your Information,” which addresses top questions about privacy bullying prevention and general Internet safety. A copy of AG Kane’s public service announcement is available at http://vimeo.com/user14100391/review/64205091/03aa64cf6a.

Although the awareness campaign targets young people, the online privacy resources can be utilized by all consumers. The effort also includes a privacy tip sheet and an “Ask the Safety Team” video series, where Facebook will answer users’ questions. Both can be found at www.facebook.com/fbsafety.

Privacy Rights — Corporations Not the Same as People

A Pennsylvania Judge has ruled that corporations are not entitled to the same right of privacy as people. The case involved the fracking industry.

Washington County Court of Common Pleas Judge Debbie O’Dell Seneca said, “Whether a right of privacy for businesses exists within the prenumbral rights of Pennsylvania’s constitution is a matter of first impression. It does not.”

“This court ruling is a significant development for the growing movement to restore democracy to the people,” said John Bonifaz, executive director of Free Speech For People. “The ruling is the newest example of dissent within the judiciary to the fabricated doctrine of corporate constitutional rights. It will be held up for years to come as a powerful defense of the promise of American self-government: of, by, and for the people.”

The Court wrote, “Nothing in that jurisprudence (Pennsylvania constitution) indicates that that right [of privacy] is available to business entities. There are no men or woman defendants in the instant case; they are various business entities. Business entities are created by the state and subject to laws, unlike people with natural rights. In the absence of state law, business entities are nothing. If businesses had natural rights like people, the chattel would become the co-equal to its owners, the servant on par with its masters, the agent the peer of its principles, and the legal fabrication superior to the law that created and sustains it.”

The court’s ruling was prompted by a lawsuit filed by several newspapers and resulted in the unsealing of a confidential settlement where fracking companies “paid $750,000 to a family that claimed the gas drilling had contaminated their water and harmed their health.”

Google Privacy Policy Violations

The U.K., France, Italy, and Germany have found Google to be in breach of their agreement to uphold consumers’ privacy.

Members of the European Union found Google in violation about a year ago when Google (also owner of YouTube) merged about 60 privacy policies into one single policy. Google responded, “Our privacy policy respects European law and allows us to create simpler, more effective services. We have engaged fully with the [data protection authorities] involved throughout this process, and we’ll continue to do so going forward.”