August 22, 2005

Buying ID documents

Another structural beam just rusted and fell out of the foundations of the Identity Society. There is now a (thriving?) offshore market in forged secondary documents. Things like electricity bills, phone bills, credit documents, council or city papers can be drawn up for cash.

Beverley Young of Cifas, a fraud advice service set up by the credit industry, said: 'It is hard to prevent criminals using the internet to find false documentation, which can then be used to steal people's identities.
'We can warn people about false documents, but the sophisticated techniques used by the fraudsters mean that in most cases we cannot stop them. The regulators are powerless, too. ...

Cifas said the replica documents looked authentic because the people operating many of the websites had bought up printing equipment that was used by the companies whose documents they fake.

Fraud investigating company CPP of York accessed one of these websites and paid 200 for false statements from British Gas, Barclaycard, Barclays bank and Revenue & Customs.

As a reminder - what's left to establish Rights? There are a wealth of other techniques in Rights:

From a technology pov we have no issue. But for society at large this is yet more evidence of a looming clash between the unstoppable machine of Identity and the unimpressible rock of reality.

Posted by iang at August 22, 2005 06:17 AM | TrackBack

It doesn't strike me as particularly wise to buy a fake id from someone using a credit card. In the original article, does anyone know how the journalist bought the fake utility bills?

Posted by: Darren at August 22, 2005 06:29 AM

You are absolutely right about not using a credit card to buy these. I was the person that bought them for the article in question and spent some time wrangling over how best to pay for the docs. In the end I used an internet payment method (I won't name it but I am sure you can guess which one) as I felt this provided me sufficient protection subsequent to what was, without question, a legitimate transaction in buying these docs from this supplier i.e. none of my payment details were being exposed that could subsequently be abused.

Posted by: Owen at September 7, 2005 07:10 AM
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