Introduction to Computer Crime - John Bambenek talk to Champaign Seniors Policy Academy
14 years experience in computer security
Work as a digital forensic
examiner, investigator and researcher
Usually do fraud cases but some other work
Live here in Champaign with my family
On the Internet, no one knows you’re a dog.
It is really hard to be sure you are talking to
who you are thinking you are talking to on
It is easy to “pretend” to be someone else.
Impersonation for fraud:
◦ Common for Facebook / Twitter / Email
◦ “Help, I’m stuck in the UK, can you wire me some
◦ “Someone is saying some real bad stuff about you, click
this link XX?”
◦ “I’m from helpdesk, use this to reset your password”
◦ Videos (Go to actual news sites or YouTube instead)
How do you know the website you are at is
◦ Charity fraud
Link may “say” it is going to a legitimate
site, but may not be
Google searches are not as reliable as you
Don’t put confidential information in an
Verify information offline.
Use bookmarks to go to commonly used sites
for shopping / banking
Look for odd misspellings, e-mail addresses
from overseas (.eu, .ru, etc)
We need passwords for everything and it is
impossible to remember them all.
Passwords are not terribly difficult to steal.
The more a password looks like a real
word, the easier it is to crack.
People tend to use the same password for
The longer a password is, the harder it is to
Try to use a “throwaway” password for
unimportant sites (i.e. ChicagoBears1995)
For banking/financial sites, ask for two-
factor authentication (send text message to
Your computer is the best resource a criminal
can get. If they get that, they get everything,
all passwords, your e-mails, etc.
People are constantly attacking.
The are vulnerabilities being found in the
software you use every day.
Always keep your computer up-to-date with
Update your applications too, many will pop
up warnings telling you to update. (But be
Use anti-virus software, it costs money but
it’s worth it to prevent headaches later
◦ Examples: McAfee, Norton
Avoid clicking on pop-ups from websites.
Avoid clicking on links in e-mails (attackers
love this one)
Downloading pirated movies are often
Children’s game sites are often infected (stick
with known names, Disney, Nick, etc)
People tend to think of the Internet as
anonymous (it’s not)
This can lead to people using it as a means to
harassment (sometimes just for harassment’s
Worst thing you can do is feed it by
responding, use ignore/block liberally
2.4 million cards were stolen
Mostly people “cloned” the cards and started
Nothing consumers could have done to
Check bank account statements and credit
card statements frequently
◦ The sooner your report a problem, the more likely
your bank will give you money back and get you a
Check credit reports for new items you don’t
Report crime to ic3.gov and/or local law