Investigation of Identity Theft or Fraud

Here’s What Happened . . .

Jane pays a few personal bills from her computer at home and at work. The next day, she receives an e-mail at work, requesting her to confirm her Social Security number so that one of her payments can be executed. Jane provides the information against her better judgment.

Within one week, Jane notices a dramatic increase in her credit card balance. She also starts receiving strange telephone calls from vendors about bills she did not create. Worse, a Secret Service special agent visits Jane at work and questions her about making threatening calls to a political figure.

Jane is convinced that her identity has been compromised and informs the Secret Service special agent everything that occurred within the past week. Jane is not sure whether her home or work computer was compromised but shows the special agent the e-mail she received one week before about her Social Security number.

Here’s What You Need to Do . . .

You are assigned to investigate Jane’s computer security issues, and you realize that Jane is a legitimate victim of identity theft or fraud. Your job is to help Jane understand identity theft or fraud and to create a 4- to 5-page report that outlines the process for moving this case forward.

In one page, analyze Jane’s case of theft or fraud. Make sure to use specific details from the scenario and research from the course readings to support your ideas.

In your report, include the following:

  • Explain the historical and current legal considerations of identity theft or fraud and the way Jane’s case is classifiable as such.
  • Explain how such cybercrimes impact society.
  • Evaluate the value of computer security and personal responsibility in such cases—in other words, discuss the things Jane could do to stay safe in the future.
  • Explain how you would proceed to investigate this case. Make sure to use specific details from the scenario and research from the course readings to support your ideas. In your report, include the following:
    • Identify individuals with whom you would need to speak—for example, supervisors at Jane’s place of employment, supervisors at your office, and the US prosecutor.
    • Analyze the situation to describe the different venues involved, the electronic evidence required, and the proper consent and search warrants needed (if applicable).
    • Identify the information you need to obtain for this case.
    • Explain how you would record the evidence of this investigation from beginning to end.
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