Computer Info Compromised?

Discussion in 'Windows Vista General Discussion' started by ColTom2, Feb 1, 2008.

  1. ColTom2

    ColTom2 Guest

    Hi:

    I have a friend who had some old letters of one of his kin in a .doc file
    in his My Documents folder in his computer. The letters were enough to have
    formed a book about the 1800's written by this kin.

    He Googled the letters info and found some data applicable these letters
    which he has never shared with anyone. Also the .doc file string is exactly
    as that in his computer. In fact, he has found a copy of these letters for
    sale on the internet and the seller appears to be from the same area of the
    state where he lives if not the same city. His name is referenced in as the
    author of these letters.

    So my question is how did someone acquire this data from his computer, as
    apparently his computer has been compromised. It would appear to me that it
    had to happen in one or two scenario's. First someone somehow accessed his
    computer through the internet or second when he had taken his computer to a
    shop for repair. Since it appears that the seller is from the same area of
    state as he is, then my first inclination would be that this info was taken
    from his computer during a repair. I just really have don't have the
    expertise in this area to try and make a good determination.

    If anyone has any comments, suggestions, and/or recommendations as to how
    all this could have happened I would be most appreciative to read them.

    I apologize if I have posted this in the wrong newsgroups.

    Thanks
     
    ColTom2, Feb 1, 2008
    #1
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  2. It's hard to say from here how this happened, but there is very likely a
    simple way to establish it with certainty.

    If these items are wrongfully listed as for sale (i.e. they are stolen
    property), legal action will quickly disclose the method.

    The friend should contact a lawyer and law enforcement *immediately*.
    There are probably both civil and criminal proceedings available. Law
    enforcement officials will likely have the power to seize the materials to
    immediately prevent any further distribution.

    Hope this helps, and best of luck.
    -pk
     
    Patrick Keenan, Feb 1, 2008
    #2
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  3. ColTom2

    DL Guest

    You have cross posted to groups that have no relevence to the subject
    therefore its assumed to be spam
     
    DL, Feb 1, 2008
    #3
  4. ColTom2

    ColTom2 Guest

    You should read my last sentence before you fire off such curt remarks such
    as this. Go find something constructive to do.


    You have cross posted to groups that have no relevence to the subject
    therefore its assumed to be spam
     
    ColTom2, Feb 1, 2008
    #4
  5. ColTom2

    Bobby Knight Guest

    And you increased the exposure by cross-posting this.
    b
     
    Bobby Knight, Feb 1, 2008
    #5
  6. ColTom2

    HeyBub Guest

    Apologizing in advance doesn't mitigate the definition of spam.
     
    HeyBub, Feb 1, 2008
    #6
  7. ColTom2

    AlexB Guest

    OK, listen here.

    My vote is 99.98% for the repair shop, especially if it is a small one. They
    have the time to examine what is on the disk. It is possible to steal
    documents via the Internet but in my judgment the person who does such
    things and I want to tell you, there are quite a few in this group, and
    perhaps that snutty and cruel DL is one of them, by the virtue of the jobs
    they do have to deal with a huge amount of material. They are after specific
    pieces of information, like passwords to PayPal or credit card numbers. They
    have a rough guess where that can be found. I don't think it is a part of
    their job description to go after historical documents.

    The other person, Patrick, gave you a very good advice. But before you
    contacted your lawyer try to make a statement to the Police. It may not be
    possible, they may say: it is not in our district, not in our jurisdiction
    or whatever but you will make a mark.

    Also, keep a diary of every step you (or your friend) do.

    This is why people should switch to Vista and never take their computers to
    a repair shop. It is much more difficult to poach a Vista machine and on
    Business and Ultimate you can completely encode all files you want.
     
    AlexB, Feb 1, 2008
    #7
  8. ColTom2

    ColTom2 Guest

    I was searching for some good information about a subject which I
    admittedly know little about and with the exception of Patrick Keenan's
    reply all I have gotten is replies such as yours and DL's.

    I can assure you that my posting was NOT spam and was well intended to find
    creditable information regardless of the manner of my posting.


    Apologizing in advance doesn't mitigate the definition of spam.
     
    ColTom2, Feb 1, 2008
    #8
  9. ColTom2

    ColTom2 Guest

    I appreciate your informative reply and recommendations.

    Thanks


    OK, listen here.

    My vote is 99.98% for the repair shop, especially if it is a small one. They
    have the time to examine what is on the disk. It is possible to steal
    documents via the Internet but in my judgment the person who does such
    things and I want to tell you, there are quite a few in this group, and
    perhaps that snutty and cruel DL is one of them, by the virtue of the jobs
    they do have to deal with a huge amount of material. They are after specific
    pieces of information, like passwords to PayPal or credit card numbers. They
    have a rough guess where that can be found. I don't think it is a part of
    their job description to go after historical documents.

    The other person, Patrick, gave you a very good advice. But before you
    contacted your lawyer try to make a statement to the Police. It may not be
    possible, they may say: it is not in our district, not in our jurisdiction
    or whatever but you will make a mark.

    Also, keep a diary of every step you (or your friend) do.

    This is why people should switch to Vista and never take their computers to
    a repair shop. It is much more difficult to poach a Vista machine and on
    Business and Ultimate you can completely encode all files you want.
     
    ColTom2, Feb 1, 2008
    #9
  10. ColTom2

    Bob Guest

    I agree it was not spam.
    Although I understand your motivation the only thing you did "wrong" was to
    cross-post to so many groups.

    P.S. If I was in the same situation I would probably do EXACTLY what you
    did.
     
    Bob, Feb 2, 2008
    #10
  11. From: "HeyBub" <>

    | Apologizing in advance doesn't mitigate the definition of spam.
    |

    This can NOT be categorized as spam.
    You may calls this excessive Croos-Posting but NOT spam!
     
    David H. Lipman, Feb 2, 2008
    #11
  12. From: "ColTom2" <>

    | I appreciate your informative reply and recommendations.
    |
    | Thanks
    |

    I doubt using Vista would make any difference in this situation as you an Encrypt data on
    Win2K and WinXP as well as Vista.
     
    David H. Lipman, Feb 2, 2008
    #12
  13. Not necessarily.
    While you can encrypt data on a couple of versions of Vista, I'd have to
    say that it would not offer much if any protection in this situation.

    I say this because EFS encryption is tied to the account, and if you're
    actually in the account - as you would have to be to service the system -
    the data is not encrypted to you. It can be simply copied away, and at
    worst, the account certificates can be exported and the data copied off
    wholesale and decrypted on another machine.

    And of course EFS isn't available on any version of Vista or XP with Home in
    the name.

    EFS encryption is really only of value in cases such as theft or
    unauthorised system access. As soon as you give someone access to your
    account, EFS protection is just gone.

    You could use a 3rd party encryption tool that uses a separate password.
    Then only those who need that specific data have access to it, not anyone
    who walks up or is given access to the system. The system can be serviced
    without giving out that password. This has the added advantage of not
    being subject to account damage from Windows reinstalls.

    That said, granting access to a system for service or use does *not* grant
    ownership of or rights to its contents, and privacy laws probably also apply
    (depending on jurisdiction).

    Legal action should be initiated as quickly as possible, and whether lawyer
    or law enforcement is first should be decided by simple availability. If
    the best that can be done right now is to drop by a police station and file
    a formal complaint on the record, that's probably the best idea.

    Neglecting to take action can be regarded as approval, and result in a loss
    of rights.

    HTH
    -pk
     
    Patrick Keenan, Feb 2, 2008
    #13
  14. ColTom2

    Leo Guest

    The better solution, IMO, is to store important info on a CD or DVD kept in
    a safe place and not on the hard drive.
     
    Leo, Feb 2, 2008
    #14
  15. ColTom2

    NoStop Guest

    And what the OP said isn't *spam* . You should go and read the definition of
    spam before coming up with such silliness.

    Cheers.

    --
    Frank's Brain Activity Plotted (watch the red line):
    http://i68.photobucket.com/albums/i4/Astronomy2/PreformanceMonitor.jpg

    California 5150 Notice:

    All attempts to try and convince Frank to seek help for his mental
    problems have failed. The State of California has no option left but
    to issue the following 5150 order within the next 24 hours.
    http://tinyurl.com/y2y66g
     
    NoStop, Feb 2, 2008
    #15
  16. ColTom2

    NoStop Guest

    Most news service providers wouldn't consider cross-posting to 5 ng's as
    excessive.
    It looks like he posted to relevant newsgroups considering what has taken
    place.

    Cheers.

    --
    Frank's Brain Activity Plotted (watch the red line):
    http://i68.photobucket.com/albums/i4/Astronomy2/PreformanceMonitor.jpg

    California 5150 Notice:

    All attempts to try and convince Frank to seek help for his mental
    problems have failed. The State of California has no option left but
    to issue the following 5150 order within the next 24 hours.
    http://tinyurl.com/y2y66g
     
    NoStop, Feb 2, 2008
    #16
  17. ColTom2

    ColTom2 Guest

    Hi:

    Someone else has passed on to me that for really sensitive records
    i.e.online banking records etc the best way to protect is by storing them on
    a "Jump or Flash Drive". This way you use it and remove it when you are
    through.

    However, in this case, as I originally mentioned these were not really
    sensitive records per se, but records of a personal nature. Therefore it's
    hard for me to believe they were accessed from the internet, but from
    possibly a local source (repair shop).

    As someone has stated sourcing from the internet appears mainly to be
    targeted towards passwords, user names. etc to access financial data. Doc
    files of 1800's letters seems out of context for internet sourcing, but then
    I certainly could be all wrong.

    I am just trying to determine at this point what would be the most logical
    source of this compromise and any other pertinent info in this regards.

    Thanks for all the "constructive" comments....


    Hi:

    I have a friend who had some old letters of one of his kin in a .doc file
    in his My Documents folder in his computer. The letters were enough to have
    formed a book about the 1800's written by this kin.

    He Googled the letters info and found some data applicable these letters
    which he has never shared with anyone. Also the .doc file string is exactly
    as that in his computer. In fact, he has found a copy of these letters for
    sale on the internet and the seller appears to be from the same area of the
    state where he lives if not the same city. His name is referenced in as the
    author of these letters.

    So my question is how did someone acquire this data from his computer, as
    apparently his computer has been compromised. It would appear to me that it
    had to happen in one or two scenario's. First someone somehow accessed his
    computer through the internet or second when he had taken his computer to a
    shop for repair. Since it appears that the seller is from the same area of
    state as he is, then my first inclination would be that this info was taken
    from his computer during a repair. I just really have don't have the
    expertise in this area to try and make a good determination.

    If anyone has any comments, suggestions, and/or recommendations as to how
    all this could have happened I would be most appreciative to read them.

    I apologize if I have posted this in the wrong newsgroups.

    Thanks
     
    ColTom2, Feb 2, 2008
    #17
  18. ColTom2

    Frank Guest

    Right, and so should you.
    Your sig contains probable links to commercial medical services whose
    services you have evidently availed yourself of and that you will now
    receive a discount for future services based on generating web traffic
    to their web site.
    This ng is not for sale and you are posting spam here in the hopes of
    some future financial remuneration.
    So you must stop your spamming!
    Frank
     
    Frank, Feb 2, 2008
    #18
  19. ColTom2

    HeyBub Guest

    Again, no. Spam is in the eye of the beholder, not the composer. Virtually
    everyone who lauches missives into the ether is convinced in their own mind
    that their post is timely, useful, and will lighten the hearts of all who
    read it. In gratitude, sometimes money even comes back to the sender.

    Point is, you don't get a vote on whether your composition is spam.

    Now if the majority of responses to your posts are not to your liking - and
    if some even accuse you of spamming - for you to maintain that your
    communications are as pure as the baby Jesus is symptomatic of some
    pathology.

    Your assurances notwithstanding, an abject apology and an act of contrition
    would probably reinstate your reputation (though only probationary). I
    recommend you purchase three Kernal Sanders chicken dinners and give them to
    the poor.

    It will be good for your soul.
     
    HeyBub, Feb 2, 2008
    #19
  20. ColTom2

    NoStop Guest

    You know damn well, because you've been told over and over again, that those
    links were specifically placed there to help *YOU* . I suggest you read
    them. Packed your toothbrush yet Frankie Boy? They're coming to pick you
    up. Get ready to wear a neat new jacket with long arms that buckle in the
    back.

    Cheers.

    --
    Frank's Brain Activity Plotted (watch the red line):
    http://i68.photobucket.com/albums/i4/Astronomy2/PreformanceMonitor.jpg

    California 5150 Notice:

    All attempts to try and convince Frank to seek help for his mental
    problems have failed. The State of California has no option left but
    to issue the following 5150 order within the next 24 hours.
    http://tinyurl.com/y2y66g
     
    NoStop, Feb 2, 2008
    #20
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