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Let's Take a Bit Out of Crime

While the Internet is one of the most important innovations in the world's lifetime there are some drawbacks as evidenced in the different readings. People think that it is justified to take people's money because they are ignorant. However, it is wrong and I think people should be taught how to spot these attempted crimes.

While I have never had any money taken, been phished, or anything like that I do remember an incidence when I was in high school. I went to a page and entered my internet information such as my name and password. When I did this the person on the other end took my AOL profile and began using it. I was shocked when my dad called me at school the next day to ask if I had been on the Internet. I said no I was in class all day and asked why. He said that someone had been using my profile to look at pornography and as a minor it showed up on my parents account.

I felt violated. While I didn't lose any money, I did lose a sense of security and have been more careful what sites I go to. Some of the precautions I have taken include typing in the address I want to go to, using Firefox, and making sure the site tells me I have entered a secure server. However, I was surprised to find out by reading the Dhamija article that there are some very clever criminals out there and I should be more careful. I realize now that I should pay more attention. I was also surprised how clever phishers have gotten, using the bank of the west site as a fishing scam by making the address www.bankofthevvest.com is incredible (Dhamija, 7). I can see how 18 of the 20 participants were fooled into believing it was a real site. I also realize that it doesn't matter how knowledgable you are with the internet, one can still be tricked as evidenced by the participation in the study.

I have received the emails about the king of nigeria dying and I can get his money. I like to read them and laugh at how bad the language actually and am dumbfounded at how people can give their information out so easily. I send these emails to the University of Minnesota spam division so they can crack down on these emails and prevent these crimes from happening to students. The people that try these scams are hurting the people that work for a living earning a dollar a week. They are hurting the respect of the country and are showing potential tourists that they will be victims of crime if they deal with the people of Nigeria. I feel bad for the people of Nigeria and those that give their money to the thieves.

In regards to the Colbert and wikipedia, I thought about it and came to the conclusion that it is a crime. While I like Colbert and think he is funny suggesting things like, "recommended that his viewers begin by changing the article for "elephant" to say that the population of African elephants has tripled in the past six months" (http://news.com.com/2061-10802_3-6100754.html). Is advovating people falsify information. He is like the ringleader. While not even close to comparison, do people realize that Charles Manson never killed anyone? He convinced his followers to commit the murders. Now. Manson is in jail. While Colbert never did anything remotely as evil, he did advocate attacking a web site and it could be viewed as a crime.

Finally, politicians need to accept what they say is going to go online and think before they speak. Regardless if Gutknecht stated that he made a "12-year term-limit he imposed on himself in 1995" (http://www.bluestemprairie.com/a_bluestem_prairie/2006/08/gil_gutknecht_w.html).That informaion is going to get out one way or another and fooling around with Wikipedia will just get a person more negative publicity than he or she wants. If voters like what he is doing in Washington, they will ask him to stay. Politicians should take notice of what the Internet has done to some candidates and be careful when saying anything.

The issue of Internet crime is both interesting and troubling. People need to be more knowledgable about how to protect yourself. Reading the Dhajami article really opened my eyes, from now on, I am going to make sure I am on a safe site before giving my information.

Comments

I was a little surprised that 18 out of 20 people can be completely fooled by a website. I used to think that the longer one's Internet experience was, the more capable they would be in detecting a false website. Apparently I was wrong. I think that it would be great to have more workshops at schools and colleges that teach students and other people on how to detect a false website. I think that it would help to reduce the amount of bank account scams and identity thefts there are in this country alone.