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Theft of twenty-somethings' IDs surges

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Are we surprised?

Everything they do is posted to Facebook or tweeted.

"I've just bought this from this shop and it only cost me this much!"

"I've just gone to Cancun for two weeks!"

Social engineering goldmine.

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Re: Are we surprised?

But on Facebook at least, only your direct circle of friends can see that information (by default). If one of your friends is a scam artist them you're out of luck; but for most people that's not the case.

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Re: Are we surprised?

But on Facebook at least, only your direct circle of friends can see that information (by default)

Yes, but a large number of Facebook users have all sorts of miscellaneous additions to their friends list, like favourite shops, football clubs, local pubs etc, as well as friend requests from friends of friends, or even people completely unknown to them.

Those extra additions open up their information to far more people who may not be trustworthy, unless specifically blocked.

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Re: Are we surprised?

This "sharing" attitude becoming the norm isn't helped by presumably reputable companies routinely asking for waaaaaaay more personal information than they really need. Sign up for a Pets at Home (just a pet supplies retailer for those outside the UK) loyalty card and they not only want your real name (why?), email address and street address (why?), but also your date of birth (why?), gender (why?), landline and mobile phone numbers (why?), pets' names and dates of birth (why?), and a host of questions about things like pet insurance you may have (OK, I can guess why their marketing department wants to know that). I pollute their databases to the best of my ability, but I'd bet that most people just unthinkingly cough up their real details.

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Anonymous Coward

Millennials

Confirms my theory that millennials are decreasingly tech literate.

I think it dropped off a cliff because the barrier to entry became too low, and because the data mining companies deliberately build their services to be security/privacy foot-guns.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Confirms my theory that millennials are decreasingly tech literate.

Far be it from to defend millenials, but it may just be that they (or indeed people in general) are tech-literate to the same extent as before, but /now/ the penetration of tech into the full spectrum of tech-(ill)literate millenials is much greater.

I.e., that your last sentence, if tweaked to refer to vunerability rather than tech literacy, is sufficient explanation, in and of itself.

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Terminator

Re: Millennials

I once heard it described thus:

From age zero to 15ish everything new in the world is just the normal stuff in the world

From 15ish to 30ish everything new is hip groovy exciting new stuff

From 30s onwards everything new is voodoo magic

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Millennials

Where does "everything new is shit, because it's all based on the inherently shitty business model of conning people out of your privacy", fit in?

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Happy

Re: Millennials

More like:

From age zero to 15ish everything new in the world is just baffling.

From 15ish to 30ish everything new is irritating.

From 30s onwards everything new pointless, we've seen it all before.

This is why Mrs Ephemeral thinks of me as her special ray of sunshine.

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Re: Millennials

I once heard it described thus:

From age zero to 15ish everything new in the world is just the normal stuff in the world

From 15ish to 30ish everything new is hip groovy exciting new stuff

From 30s onwards everything new is voodoo magic

From your 50s onwards, everything new is not actually new

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Re: Millennials

Fom your 90ies onwards, everything is totally new. Every day.

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Re: Millennials

"From 30s onwards everything new is voodoo magic"

Ah, the arrogance of (relative) youth.

I'm into double-dip thirties, it's still not voodoo magic. In fact what is depressing me is how much old stuff is still around and going around. Generation X and Generation Dumb just seem to be content to re-skin very old ideas and technology and call them "new".

Dig into Bluetooth and WiFi chipsets and be amazed at the Hayes modem commands lurking inside (etc).

The over 60s who are finding technology to be difficult are the same people who couldn't program a VCR or who never learned to do anything, not even play games, with a PC. Beign dumb isn't the preserve of the young, all of the human race can be dumb at some times and about 80% just elects to be dumb all the time, not that they can't understand but they can't be bothered to understand. "Oh it's so difficult, will you do it for me?"

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For context, how much has the rate increased for those over 30?

Quoting statistics our of context is pretty much the main way to lie with them.

Without a comparison figure these increases tell us absolutely nothing other than fraud is increasing. I would be surprised if the rate of older people being defrauded over the phone or via email wasn't increasing at a similar rate.

I say this as someone who is well over the age range and is therefore quite happy to feel superior if it's warranted.

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Re: For context, how much has the rate increased for those over 30?

You'd be right to be sceptical; data on the CIFAS website (near the bottom of the page) seems to indicate that identity theft is growing more slowly among "millennials" than almost all older age groups.

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Re: For context, how much has the rate increased for those over 30?

"Without a comparison figure these increases tell us absolutely nothing other than fraud is increasing. I would be surprised if the rate of older people being defrauded over the phone or via email wasn't increasing at a similar rate."

Beat me to it. Rather sad to see people whining about stupid millennials when the actual data shows they have both the smallest percentage increase and the smallest absolute amount of fraud. Also rather sad to see El Reg going way beyond the usual misleading clickbait headlines and into the realm of deliberate lying.

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Re: For context, how much has the rate increased for those over 30?

"data on the CIFAS website"

It would be a good start if they were to encourage basic security: "This page requires Javascript".

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Anonymous Coward

Re: For context, how much has the rate increased for those over 30?

The millennials are mostly skint (with huge debts from studying etc.) so ID theft is not as profitable as with people in the age range 30-50 who might actually have some money

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Facepalm

hmmmm.....

I heard a guy on the radio this morning..

said he'd put all his data into a website to pay for some trainers, they were 200 quid and if he'd paid with credit card they wanted to add a fiver, so I decided to use bank transfer, next thing I knew they'd set up a fake paypal account in my name because they hdd all my details... [pause] and I never did get my trainers [dailymailsadface (tm)]

I think that vignette explains the surge quite well really.

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Gimp

Re: hmmmm.....

Until recently I had not taken my tablet out for many walks but visiting relatives and having to keep up with particular events meant I had to use e.g. hotel wifi. One of them used what looked like a big-company outsourced wifi which asked me for my personal details to use the wifi, those details being the ID fraud shortlist, i.e. age, hip size, favourite dog biscuit etc.

Obviously I lied but how many people are just handing over all their bank security question details either because they assume it's just their overpriced coffee shop under a different name or because they don't realise the need for caution?

If I was going to spend 200 on a pair of trainers then I would take the £5 hit or buy them from somewhere that wasn't going to charge extra for using a card. If you are there because they are normally 500 per pair then maybe there are one or more other questions you should be asking first.

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Also, lets put the numbers in context of the population

Using the 2011 UK census, assuming we only count people aged 20-29 then the number of 24000 cases is about one in 350 young people. It's actually fewer because the population has almost certainly grown since then.

If we include those aged 15-19 then it's less than 1 in 500 young people who will be affected.

Not claiming this is a good number, but as any listener of Radio 4's More or Less should know, the first question you ask is "is that actually a big number?".

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Safe spending

Kids sticking their cards in stranger places than a sailor sticks his penis. Cash and carry folks, why would you ever whip out your card for a $10 item or taxi ride?

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Big Brother

Re: Safe spending

you're kidding right?

We have 5 vending machines at work - and all 5 of them accept credit cards, people are using them to purchase an 85 cent pack of gum, or a $1 candy bar.. (There's also some fine print on the machine that states that the price charged to a credit card is 10% higher than the cash price shown in the machine).

I think credit card companies have finally figured out that they need to support micro-payments. I see this as just a step in that direction.

I wonder what the smallest amount anyone has ever charged for a single credit card purchase? The lowest I've seen is the example above 85 cent pack of gum.

Anyone else?

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Big Brother

Share at your peril

TL;DR - Wise-Up People!!

So here I am. Old. Over half a century now. Never thought I'd get here intact (motorbikes, British Army, ADHD, adrenaline-junky, etc...), and I still cannot get my head around why people feel the need to 'Share' so much? (Please ignore any irony)

BUT, I've never suffered from the need to broadcast to all and sundry what I am doing just to feel validated or adored by my 'peers.' My mum and dad told me that to share too much is a weakness that can, and likely will, be used against you at some point. The less people know about you, the better.

Then comes Social Media. The Zucks and their ilk take YOUR data and share it. Not to help You, but to monetise it. For them.

And it's not just Those in their 20's putting their lives out there - it's all of us to some degree or another. Even though I am super-careful now about what I share, I wasn't always in the past. You know I've Served. You know I'm female. You know I'm old, etc. It's so easy to build a profile these days, and so many people do not realise how damn easy that is. They all feel that they are safe - remember how Clarkson got into trouble because he thought his bank details couldn't be used by someone else? With a bit of Social Engineering, they were - http://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/01/07/clarkson_bank_prank_backfires/

To reiterate on a bit more information (available elsewhere on elReg), I also worked at the MOD for over 20 years. I was there when computer surveillance started in a big way. I saw how deep the IS/COIN rabbit hole went even back then. Scared the hell out of me it did!

Hint: Even never engaging with Social Media or participating is not going to save you. Neither is having no online presence. All you can do is minimise the risks by being a whole lot more circumspect on what you decide to 'Share.'

Assuming just for the moment that our wonderful gubmint isn't actually out to screw you <sarcasm>, there are a boatload of truly nasty bastards out there who will happily use your data as a meal-ticket, or to f*** you over - you know, just for the lulz.

The Information Age is a blast, but people really need to wise-up!

(Note: I really am a 18 year old male-ish Thermian, from the Klaatu Nebula)

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Re: Share at your peril

Yeah, but 18 Thermian years is about 57 Solar years.

Hah hah! Seriously, sounds like we're contemporaries.

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Anonymous Coward

People are generally stupid

See title.

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Devil

Re: People are generally stupid

“Think of how stupid the average person is, and realize half of them are stupider than that.”

― George Carlin

There, fixed that for you ;)

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Deja vu

I'm sure I've seen something along the lines of the linked video before - people being presented with information about themselves and being surprised by it - but I'm not sure of the context, whether it was a YouTube thing, or a small piece in a TV programme, or something.

And in both cases - this video and the one I remember seeing before - I am saddened to say that my surprise is somewhat lacking.

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Anonymous Coward

But most millenialls are so dull and full of endless crap...

...that thieving their data would be like reading from /dev/null.

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Re: But most millenialls are so dull and full of endless crap...

Oh cut them a little slack.

/dev/urandom at least.

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Don't lie -- just refuse to do business

I wish that more people would just refuse to do business with companies that want intrusive information.

If a company asks for date of birth, or a phone number when they don't need it, I refuse to do business with them. I don't make something up. More often than not, I tell them that I would have done business with them but am not because of their nosy data gathering.

I started this when I got my first bank account in the 1970's. In those days, some shops wanted me to put my address on the back of a cheque, even if it was guaranteed (young'uns can ask their parents about something called "cheque guarantee cards"). I refused and, if necessary, walked away from the transaction.

If fewer companies were asking for personal data it would improve general "data hygiene" and people would be less willing to share.

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Big Brother

What's your superhero name?

I have lost count of the number of times one or more of my friends has linked one of those damnable list things where you use (all or part of) your name, address, date of birth or other personal information to chose from several lists to generate your Superhero name, unicorn name, Rock Band name or whatever - so I could, with little hassle, work out almost everything I need to commit identity fraud against them.

(You might mock, but Farcebook provides an easy and quick way to keep in touch with friends and family around the world. All you have to do is be careful about what you share - just because your mate Joe Genaro tells the world he's off to Albuquerque from tomorrow until the middle of next month doesn't mean you need to!)

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Re: What's your superhero name?

The sad part is that when Joe comes back, he blabs again all over FB about how his house was broke into and everything stolen. Six months later, does it again... WTF? I do believe that a lot of people just don't have a clue about how public FB really is. Nothing is set by default as far as hiding things. But, folks seem to think that what they post is only seen by their closet 5000 friends....

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Do millennials even have an identity?

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Do people under 30 have actual IDs?

Few of them seem to vote so are we sure they all really exist and are not some Matrixian constructs?

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Do people under 30 have actual IDs?

Few of them seem to vote so are we sure they all really exist and are not some Matrixian constructs?

Well I have a teenage daughter who appears long enough to eat any food available, and then disappears again. I'm pretty sure she does exist... if only occasionally.

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Anonymous Coward

Cats are like that... Hmm, may be worth checking with your neighbours in case she is going round being fed at several homes who each think she is their daughter !

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Totally Unaware

This whole issue goes to the root of what the millennial generation do. There is no concept of security, privacy or think before you do something. It does not appear to matter what the schools teach and what parent's advise, the always on, post every little detail way of life just continues. This group have no wish to understand that what they are doing is stupid and potentially life-changing. It is more important to keep posting drivel on Facebook, SnapChat WhatsUp and so on, 24/7 and then moan that there ID has been compromised than understand basic security. Add to that the applications that have location enabled and shared then it is a total recipe for disaster. Whilst on the train a few days ago, 3 girls probably aged 18 to 20 where busy on-line on their phones. A friend was on holiday somewhere and they where able to see exactly where in Ibiza, as location was enables. This was seen as cool, and two of the three then promptly enabled the function. The third already had it.

I simply do not know what you do about it, the term "common sense" just does not apply and those that try to explain that what they are doing is inadvisable are dismissed as old farts.

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