More Ways to Protect Your Online Privacy

Online privacy, work-at-home scams, and FBI warnings on computer virus: Internet ScamBusters #116


Today’s issue has 3 ScamBusters Snippets:

– Additional Important Ways to Protect Your Privacy Online

– Action Taken Against 200+ Operators of Work-at-Home Scams

– FBI Issues Warnings About New Computer Virus

Be sure to check out the first and third Snippet below. Let’s begin…


Additional Important Ways to Protect Your Online Privacy


After publishing ScamBusters Issue #113 called ‘Online Privacy: Can You Get a Map to a Person’s Home By Entering Their Phone Number in Google?’, I found an excellent FAQ about this issue posted on the MapQuest.com site that includes some great additional resources on how to protect privacy online.

Note: If you haven’t seen ScamBusters Issue #113 on Internet privacy, you can check it out here.

Here are the links MapQuest has compiled to several of the most popular reverse lookup sites, including the links to opt out when available:

Google
Home page: http://www.google.com
Opt-out at: http://www.google.com/help/pbremoval.html

Anywho.com
Home page: http://www.anywho.com
Opt-out at: http://www.anywho.com/help/privacy_list.html

Switchboard.com
Home page: http://www.switchboard.com
Opt-out at: http://www.switchboard.com/bin/cgiqa.dll?LNK=24:3&MEM=1&FUNC=DELETE

Whitepages.com
Home page (US): http://www.whitepages.com
Home page (CAN): http://www.whitepages.ca
Opt-out at: http://www.whitepages.com/cust_serv/removal_form

411.com
Home page: http://www.411.com
Opt-out at: http://www.411.com/cust_serv/removal_form

MSN White Pages
Home page: http://www.infospace.com/_1_2EOJTR70HPERH5__msn.main/white-pages
Opt-out instructions:
1. Search the MSN White Pages directory to find your listing.

2. Once you have located your listing, click on your name to go to the listing details page.

3. On the listing details page, click the “Update/Remove” link to the right of your name and follow directions on that page.

4. To verify your request, MSN.com will send an email message to the address you provide.

5. Once you confirm the request, your listing will be updated or deleted.

AOL White Pages
Home page: http://www.infospace.com/_1_EUKTR704PR8CZ5__aolwp.aols/white-pages
Opt-out instructions:
1. Search the AOL White Pages directory to find your listing.

2. If your information is found, click on the “Update/Remove” link at the top right corner of the results box (across from your name)

3. About halfway down the page is a box labeled “Update Your Listing.” To the right of this box you will see the label “Remove Your Listing.” Click the button labeled “REMOVE.”

For much more on this topic, check out the first item on MapQuest’s excellent FAQ called “Important information about reverse telephone number lookup”.

Action: Our personal recommendation is to opt out of all these sources.


Action Taken Against 200+ Operators of Work-at-Home Scams



We’re pleased to report that last week, the Federal Trade Commission, the Department of Justice (DOJ), the U.S. Postal Inspection Service (USPIS), and law enforcement agencies from 14 states have taken action against more than 200 operators of Work-at-Home and other business fraud schemes.

For more info on the enforcement actions, check out this article. And if you’ve been scammed, you can check with the appropriate agency.

==} http://www.ftc.gov/opa/2005/02/bizoppflop.htm


FBI Issues Warnings About New Computer Virus



A new email that looks like it originates from the FBI with a virus attached surfaced last week.

The email notifies recipients that they have visited illegal Web sites, and then asks them to answer a set of questions that are supposedly in the attachment.

For example, one email says: “We have logged your IP address on more than 40 illegal Web sites. Important: Please answer our questions! The list of questions are (sic) attached.”

Opening the attachment will infect PC computers with the Sober-K worm, which first appeared last week.

The major virus protection companies have definitions for this virus.

Actions: 1. Recognize that the FBI does not conduct business by notifying people they are a target or potential target of investigation by email.

2. Update and run your virus protection software.

For more on protecting yourself from viruses and anti-virus info, click here.

That’s it for now. Wishing you a great — and safe — week.