Monday, April 26, 2010

Stalking & Googling Someone 40,000 Times = 16 Weeks in Jail

By Arthur Martin

An ‘obsessive’ TV producer who stalked a former classmate for more than seven years was jailed for just 16 weeks on Monday.

Elliot Fogel, 34, subjected Claire Waxman to an ‘unimaginable’ ordeal by following her, breaking into her car and making hundreds of late-night phone calls to her home.

A search of his computer revealed he had Googled his victim more than 40,000 times in one year. But despite a judge ruling that Fogel’s actions had caused ‘mental harm’ to his victim, a police source revealed that he could be free in as little as six weeks.

Mrs. Waxman, 34, a complementary therapist from North-West London, attacked the sentence as too short and called for tougher jail terms in stalking cases.
‘I will get a couple of months’ respite at best, but I am under no illusion that he will be out of jail soon and the harassment will start again,’ she said. ‘What we are looking at here is an obsessive person who is highly likely to reoffend.

'There is currently not an appropriate sentence for stalking. This obsession started 20 years ago and it’s not going to suddenly stop after a few weeks in jail.’

Wood Green Crown Court in North London heard how Fogel – a freelance producer at Sky Sports News and Capital Radio – first developed an unhealthy interest in Mrs Waxman while they were students at a college in St Albans, Hertfordshire.

She repeatedly told Fogel to leave her alone and, after leaving college in 1993, heard nothing more from him. However, ten years later, she received a dinner invitation from him, which she declined.

A few months later, in December 2003, Fogel, from Isleworth, West London, was spotted jogging on the spot outside her home and also began to spend increasing amounts of time hanging around her workplace.

Mrs Waxman told the court she felt ‘like a sitting duck’ as Fogel continued to follow her and make phone calls to her home.

After his arrest, a police search of his computer revealed he had also managed to get hold of Mrs Waxman’s wedding photographs and had a Google Earth aerial map of her home.

Further investigation found that he had paid for background searches to be carried out on Mrs Waxman’s husband Marc and her father, and that he had posed as a prospective parent at the nursery her daughter attended.

Jailing Fogel for 16 weeks after he admitted breaching a restraining order, Judge Fraser Morrison said:
‘Mrs Waxman wants some peace from you because you weren’t able to take the hint that any relationship you wanted with her was not going to take place.

‘You’re not an unintelligent man but you didn’t take the hint. She wants you out of her life.’

In a 16-page written impact statement to the court, Mrs Waxman described how she had suffered a miscarriage, developed an eating disorder, and had to move home five times as a result of her seven-year ordeal.
He has nothing in his life and all he chooses to do is pursue me and my family,’ she wrote. ‘Though there has been no physical harm, the mental harm of all these years is getting too heavy to bear.

‘My life has been ruined by this man in so many ways and yet no one can help us nor protect us.

'Instead of preventing something terrible from happening, I feel like we’re being left like sitting ducks waiting for something to happen.

‘He has said time and time again that he will leave me alone and yet never does. He still feels he is allowed to do what he wants because he has no moral compass.

‘He has no respect for me, my family, the law and I feel not even himself. Fogel is mentally unwell and has an obsession with me – he needs medical attention.’

Police have been unable to take tough action against Fogel because he has not made any physical threats to his victim. It means that officers have been able to use only anti-harassment laws to curb his campaign.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Warrantless Attempt to Read Yahoo E-mail Abandoned by D.O.J.

The U.S. Justice Department has abruptly abandoned what had become a high-profile court fight to read Yahoo users' e-mail messages without obtaining a search warrant first.

In a two-page brief filed Friday, the Obama administration withdrew its request for warrantless access to the complete contents of the Yahoo Mail accounts under investigation. CNET was the first to report on the Denver case in an article on Tuesday.

Yahoo's efforts to fend off federal prosecutors' broad request attracted allies--in the form of Google, the Electronic Frontier Foundation, the Center for Democracy and Technology, and the Progress and Freedom Foundation--who argued (PDF) that Americans who keep their e-mail in the cloud enjoy a reasonable expectation of privacy that is protected by the U.S. Constitution.

Two years ago, then-presidential candidate Barack Obama had pledged that, as president, he would "strengthen privacy protections for the digital age." This dispute had the potential to test his administration's actual commitment to privacy, which recently became the subject of a legislative push supported by Silicon Valley firms and privacy advocates. The administration has taken a position at odds with that coalition in a second case in Philadelphia involving warrantless tracking of cell phones.

Much of the information about the case in federal court in Colorado remains unclear, including the nature of the possible crime being investigated, how many e-mail accounts are at issue, and whether it was the flurry of publicity in the last few days or something else that prompted the U.S. Attorney's office in Denver to back down.

The brief filed Friday says that Yahoo had turned over more information since March 3 and that "the government has concluded that further production of records and information by Yahoo would not be helpful to the government's investigation."

On December 3, 2009, U.S. Magistrate Judge Craig Shaffer ordered Yahoo to hand over to prosecutors certain records, including the contents of e-mail messages. Yahoo divulged some of the data but refused to turn over e-mail that had been previously viewed, accessed, or downloaded and was less than 181 days old.

Neither Yahoo nor Assistant U.S. Attorney Pegeen Rhyne were immediately available for comment on Friday. A spokesman for the U.S. Attorney's office in Denver sent CNET an e-mail message saying: "Because this involves an ongoing investigation, I respectfully decline comment, other than to say the brief filed today speaks for itself."

A 17-page brief that the Justice Department filed last month acknowledges that federal law requires search warrants for messages in "electronic storage" that are less than 181 days old. But, Rhyne had argued, the Yahoo Mail messages don't meet that definition.
"Previously opened e-mail is not in 'electronic storage,'" Rhyne had written. "This court should therefore require Yahoo to comply with the order and produce the specified communications in the targeted accounts." (The Justice Department says that what's known as a 2703(d) order--and is not as privacy-protective as the rules for search warrants--should let police read e-mail.)

A footnote to Friday's government brief says that the Justice Department "is aware that Yahoo and other various parties have now submitted briefs on various privacy issues in the context of the prior motion to compel. The government respectfully disagrees with positions taken in those briefs, but because the need for the motion to compel has been vitiated by Yahoo's further production, the government declines to litigate this matter in this moot context."

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Man Arrested for Exploiting Facebook to Find Woman

Cleveland County, North Carolina deputies have arrested a man for cyber-stalking a 38-year-old Kings Mountain woman.

Laurence Barnett, 40, is charged with the crime. Deputies say it appears the Marietta, Ga., man may have used information on Facebook.com to track the woman down at her church. She recognized him, saying Barnett repeatedly tried to contact her on the social networking site.

Deputies say internet users should be careful with the information they chose to make public online. On Facebook.com, a user can control their privacy settings to decide who can access their profile.


Saturday, April 17, 2010

Canadian man Arrested for Online Dating Fraud

EOPC NEVER NEVER NEVER agrees with online dating... ever... under any circumstances. Volunteer, join an interest group but STAY OFF THE DATING SITES!

by Zoe Fraley

A Canadian man suspected of running fraudulent dating Web sites was arrested as he tried to enter the U.S. at Point Roberts on Friday, March 26, the U.S. Department of Justice announced Monday.

Barrie Turner, 65, of Delta, B.C., is suspected of mail fraud in connection with the operation of more than 200 fraudulent dating Web sites linked to Executive Dating LLC.

A U.S. Postal Inspection Service investigation alleges that Turner was accepting payment from customers for the dating service - up to $1,000 for a six-month membership - but wasn't providing any legitimate matchmaking services.

More than 100 people have filed consumer complaints about the sites, which offer executive dating services, including such niches as Catholic dating, gay dating and Seattle dating. Customers complained that the people they were being matched with were fictitious after seeing repeat pictures of matches with different personal information, according to the DOJ. Clients interested in meeting their matches received identical e-mails telling them that the person they were interested in had decided to date someone else they had already met.

Fees for joining the dating service were sent to mailbox stores around the country and then forwarded to a mailbox in Point Roberts, where Turner was heading Friday. Investigators estimate that more than 1,000 customers sent Executive Dating more than $1.2 million since 2005.

Turner was charged in U.S. District Court in Seattle. Mail fraud is punishable by up to 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Managing Your Online Reputation

Doug Beckstead and Jeff Dunetz are trying this to combat their exposures. - EOPC

by Antony Mayfield

The measure of your reputation is what you do plus what others say about you. That was one of the first things I learned in PR. A reputation can be managed, and can be influenced by the things we do, but it can never be designed or decided upon by its holder. Reputation is earned.

As the social web has distributed the power and influence formerly held by the mainstream media, it has created the need for personal reputation awareness. And despite being a long-time user of social media, I found I learned some new things as I navigated these waters for myself. Below are three tips that I found useful.

1. You Are Your Network
I had a call from a BBC researcher asking for background on social networks. The breaking story that day was that personal details and embarrassing photos of the newly appointed head of Britain’s foreign intelligence service, MI6, were splashed all over one newspaper. The source? His family’s Facebook profiles.

It made me think about my own family’s personal details and images. What if I became a story? What would a journalist find? My profile’s privacy settings were locked down, but sure enough, a few clicks showed that my wife’s was wide open.

It was a clear lesson: If you want to manage privacy, reputation, and your security to any extent, you have to think about those around you — especially those who are not as tech-savvy.

2. If You Can’t Delete, Compete
Although it’s a good idea to ask people to remove embarrassing content about you, in the majority of cases the best course is to make sure that you are the first and best source of information about yourself appearing on Google (Google) and other major search engines. “Crowding out,” or pushing that embarrassing party photo down in the search rank can be achieved over time. This approach is best combined with an ethos of developing a thicker skin.

The time may soon come when so much content about our lives is online that we get suspicious if we find no unpolished or slightly embarrassing bits about someone when we look. Why are they so perfect? What are they hiding?

Reputation is a messy and uneven business. Playing the content game is often preferable to an all out war — a battle you will most likely lose.

3. There’s a Cottage Industry Around “Reputation Protection”
In discussing online reputation with friends and colleagues, they predicted that there would be services that offer “the digital equivalent of tattoo removal.” While I didn’t doubt that there would be demand for this kind of thing, I wondered about how it would be realistically implemented.

There is, in fact, a small industry growing up to help people manage how their privacy is affected by the web. At the high end, rich and powerful celebrities now hire digital security specialists to help them lock down everything from their voicemail inbox, to their e-mail and Facebook accounts, and to look for the weak points where stalkers or prying journalists might try to get some juicy information.

For the rest of us, a host of services promise to safeguard your identity and reputation online — I even get one service free with my credit card. It tells me less than my Google Alerts, though, so I’m broadly skeptical about the effectiveness of services like this. At best, they should be combined with an effort to develop personal web literacy and an understanding of how to manage online reputation responsibly.


It is incredibly important that we help our friends, colleagues and families understand the social web. They make up our most valuable social networks. And when you understand networks, you understand that their success and well-being is intrinsically linked to your own.

As Howard Rheingold says, “What you know or don’t know about networks can influence how much freedom, wealth and participation you and your children will have in the rest of this century.”

It should be the goal of every web-savvy professional to have their online reputation precede them.


Friday, April 09, 2010

If Your Past Comes Calling....

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

If it hasn't already happened to you, someday it will: You'll pick up the phone or open an e-mail and suddenly get a blast from the past. Out of the blue, you'll hear from someone you used to know.

It might be a former classmate, hoping to see you at the next reunion. Or a colleague from a previous job who's passing through town. Or a teenage crush who looked you up on the Internet. Or an enemy seeking to make amends.
"It's a wonderful thing to do, to touch base with people, to see how people live their lives, to see how people lived out their dreams. You connect the present to the past," says Laurie Puhn, president of a professional and personal development training firm in New York.

Internet Web sites and search engines, such as classmates.com, Peoplefinders.com, Google and ZabaSearch, are making it easy to track down people from the past. The research can lead to reunions that reignite old friendships.

It also can lead to a world of trouble if, say, your nemesis is still holding a grudge. Or a long-lost buddy is looking to crash on your couch indefinitely. Or that "friend" is using you to dig up information on the ex they never got over. Or that now-married old flame wants to catch up with you, sans his or her spouse.


Thursday, April 08, 2010

Secret Facebook Romance Leads to Execution

Jealous ex-boyfriend executed mother and daughter, 4, after discovering Facebook romance

A secret affair started on Facebook may have provoked a shooting which left three
people dead, an inquest heard yesterday.

Andrew Copland shot his former partner Julie Harrison and their four-year-old daughter Maisie before turning the gun on himself.

A coroner heard the 56-year-old painter and decorator may have killed them after discovering Miss Harrison was having a relationship with an old schoolfriend.

The bloodbath was discovered after a neighbour dialled 999 after seeing 40-year-old Miss Harrison desperately banging on the inside of a window.

The inquest heard that she had moved out of Copland’s home in Aldershot into a flat in the Hampshire town.

Her new boyfriend, Lee Johnston, told the inquest he had regained contact with Miss Harrison through the Facebook website.

They were together on the morning of the day she died, December 29, and he had been due to meet her again after she dropped Maisie off at her father’s home.

Mr Johnson said: ‘She had told me Andrew had been violent on a number of occasions. He had punched her and pushed her down the stairs.’

He said he and Miss Harrison had gone to great lengths to keep their relationship a secret from Copland.

She had a mobile phone which she used only to contact Mr Johnston.

He said: 'She did not want Andrew to find out because she was scared of what he might do. She thought that he would be violent to her and any man that she was seeing.’

Mr Johnston, who lives in Northampton, said that when she failed to answer his phone calls he drove to Copland’s home and found it cordoned off by police.

Neighbour Rachel Southon told how she heard Copland bolt the door – and seconds later saw Miss Harrison fall to the floor.

She said: 'I saw the back of Andrew through the glass. Then he disappeared and I saw Julie banging on the window. She fell back as if he had hit her with something. At that point I phoned the police.’

Maisie was found dead in the dining room and Copland in the hallway. Miss Harrison was still alive and was flown to hospital but died the following day.

Coroner Andrew Bradley heard that ballistic tests revealed that all three were shot by a 9mm 1930s Baretta handgun, which Copland had found in a builder’s skip in Surrey in 1998, complete with ammunition.

He ruled that Miss Harrison and Maisie were unlawfully killed and Copland took his own life.

After the hearing Copland’s older children Craig and Keely said their lives have been 'devastated'.

They said: 'We never could have imagined that our dad could do what he has done; to us, he was an ordinary dad who taught and helped and

loved us.

'As well as the grief and anger, there are so many "whys" and "if onlys". If only our dad had never found that gun and kept it hidden all those years.'

Hampshire police will tomorrow launch a two-week firearms amnesty to remove illegal weapons from the streets.

Sunday, April 04, 2010

ALIBIS - need one?

Need an alibi? Thanks to an alert by a friend of this blog, we've learned it seems you can even BUY one!! Disgusting!


Check out some of their services:
  • Various Telephone Alibis.
  • Renting Phone Numbers
  • Untraceable Numbers
  • Voice Mail Numbers, etc.


** We place a call to you in advance confirming that your seminar/training/conference is scheduled for a date and a location designated by you:
-- To call from a 'Private' phone number
-- To call from any number requested by a client

** We mail you a conference invitation along with the timetable and topics overview, backed up by our partner's company toll-free number with the trained receptionist who will be prescreening all incoming phone calls.

** We will send you an e-ticket confirmation that you will be able to print if you choose to travel to a destination different from your actual point of travel.

** We will set you up with the virtual hotel number which will be answered by a live operator 24 hours a day. The operator will greet a caller with an appropriate hotel greeting message and will handle a call according to the instructions.

** We will send you a Certificate of Completion within 10 business days from the end of training.

** We will e-mail you digital photographs of you among the students at a particular location chosen by you.

** We can make a follow up call to you from one of the "students" wanting to keep in touch with you. (His phone number could be kept for a future need.)

Escape-a-Date Service.
Our service allows you to set-up a "save me from my date" phone call at a predetermined time. In this way, we will call you at the time you wish and if your date is not going that great, we will set the tone for an immediate getaway. .

Start or Break Up Relationships.
Just let us know when and what you would like us to manage and we will handle it for you! Please fill out a simple online request form so we can personally address your relationships needs.

Private Mail Receiving Service.
** Are you concerned about the possible lack of privacy of the mail and packages currently being delivered to your home or office?

** Do you want to keep your name and physical location hidden from people or entities you are corresponding online to?

** Is someone you met online (who may perhaps, think you are single) sending you a letter or a package and you prefer they not know your actual physical location?

Avoid awkward situations and use our discreet shipping services.

Private Phone Call Services.
**Do you need us to make a phone call, but want the phone call to appear from Paris? With the Paris number showing up on the caller id of the intended party?

# Are you in Dubai, but telling your partner you are in Tokyo? Would you like to have us assign a Tokyo number to you, receive the phone call on your behalf and forward it to your number in Dubai?

# Do you want to create an impression that you are staying in a certain hotel anywhere in the world? Complete with the 24 hr hotel receptionist answering in the accent of your choice and confirming your stay?

# Do you want to create an impression that you are flying by a certain airline on a certain date anywhere in the World?

Does anyone remember honesty? Will the internet ever be safe again? - EOPC

Saturday, April 03, 2010

Emotional Infidelity: A Love Affair or Just Friends?

by Dr. Robert Huizenga, The Infidelity Coach

A common plea: But, we're "just friends." However the "emotional connection" is quite obvious by the amount of time spent in communication and the "vibes" that are set off.

These emotional connections often arise at work or in a social context in which working intensively toward a common goal consumes energy.

Here are a few observations of the "just friends" emotional affair:
1. This person often struggles knowing where to draw the line. S/he often throws him/herself into something 100%. Other aspects of his/her life may suffer or be ignored. There often is a lack of personal balance between family, work, self care.

2. He/she struggles with intimacy. (I want to be close to someone, but don't like intimacy.) The "just friends" emotional affair means neither spouse nor OP (other person) ever get "intimate." Neither relationship is fully consummated or has potential for growth.

3. Of course the "just friends" comment means either "stay away" or I'm, underneath all this, really confused about where I fit in relationships, what I want from them, or what they mean to me. There is an "emotional connection" to the OP that defies description. A sad kind of "stuckness or lostness."

The lover or "falling in love" emotional affair has a different twist.

The common complaint to the partner is: "I feel badly about this, and I don't want to hurt you, but, I'm not "in love" with you anymore. "I love you but I'm not in love." This often indicates:
1. This person usually has a need for drama and excitement. Life easily becomes a soap opera. Emotional juice from the fall-out of emotionally intense relationships reigns rather than living life from the core of who one is. (sociopathic need for stimulation?)

2. The person “looking for love” is actually looking for the ideal, someone out there, who will project back to him/her that he/she is OK. No, more than OK, close to perfect. (narcissistic)

3. This person needs to be adored, or think another adores him/her, because there is a lack of inner strength and solid identity. The other becomes my world, because I lack a world. Being “in love” is the panacea for my emptiness. (narcissistic)

4. This type of affair often occurs when there is a “lull” in the marriage relationship. The responsibility of raising children, starting and maintaining a career, paying bills, etc. become the focal point for the couple. Romance becomes a foreign word. (pathological irresponsibility)

There are many many subtle differences in affairs. Emotional affairs are only one kind.

Once you begin to see and understand the differences, a new sense of empowerment overtakes you embark on a more confident path of resolution.

Thursday, April 01, 2010

Teens Arrested for Murder by Bullying Case

While this is a bit off-topic for us, let us hope they do not let these teenagers skate the way they did that murderer, Lori Drew. - EOPC

3 Massachusetts teenagers are due in court next week on charges stemming from a 15-year-old classmate's suicide after incessant bullying.

Seventeen-year-olds Sean Mulveyhill and Kayla Narey, both of South Hadley, face charges of criminal harassment, disturbing a school assembly and violation of civil rights.

Mulveyhill and 18-year-old Austin Renaud of Springfield also face statutory rape charges. All three are set for arraignment Tuesday in Northampton.

They are among nine teens charged in what prosecutors call the "incessant" bullying of 15-year-old South Hadley freshman Phoebe Prince, who committed suicide Jan. 15.

Messages were left for Narey's and Renaud's attorneys, and information wasn't immediately available on whether Mulveyhill had an attorney.