PI BYTES
The Official Newsletter Of The National Association Of Investigative Specialists
October 10th, 2004 Edition

 

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Investigative Articles

Understanding Cellular Telephone Security and Privacy
This article summarizes all cellular telephone security and privacy issues that I am aware of. If you know of issues that are not on this list, please let me know.  By Simson L. Garfinkel

Covert Video Surveillance In Child Abuse Cases
An important investigative tool or a breach of trust? There has been controversy among professionals and the public surrounding the use of covert video surveillance (CVS) in cases of suspected child abuse.

Pros and Cons of the Independent Contractor's Life
The benefits -- and drawbacks -- of working as an independent contractor rather than as an employee. by Attorney Stephen Fishman A Nolo Press article.

Mobile Protective Operations in Iraq
This article illustrates the unique situation that the mobile protective operations overseas are facing, as well as a tactical view in approaching the task of providing security in a high threat area. By Scott Savage

Automotive Black Box Data Recovery Systems
For years, airplane crash investigators have had the benefit of retrieving data from the flight-data recorder, or "black box." This data has proven invaluable for helping to determine what happened in the seconds before a crash. Now, in order to improve vehicle safety, General Motors is using similar technology in about 40% of its Model Year 1999 vehicles. By Don Gilman

Reducing Shrinkage
Shrinkage is a stylish word for theft.  In convenience stores, the primary shrinkage is generally attributed to shoplifting and dishonest employees with limited losses by holdups and burglaries. by: Roger H. Schmedlen, CPP, CFE, CII, MIPI

How Much Are You Worth?
How to decide what to charge for your services. by Attorney Stephen Fishman-a Nolo Press Article

Magnify Your Search Results
A software utility that grew out of visual perception research at Xerox's famous PARC labs magnifies critical information on web pages, making it "pop out" and appear to float above the background.

Homeland Security: The Internal Terrorists
A CNN lead story in February 2004 should scare every police chief in America. The story is a military story-a member of the National Guard is alleged to have tried to pass military secrets to al Qaeda-but the implications for policing are profound. By Michael Berkow, Deputy Chief of Police, Los Angeles, California

Armored Vehicles
With the ever changing events occurring in Iraq, many heads of security have been given the task of ordering an armored car. By John Murphy

Wireless Broadband: This Magic Moment
For every new successful technology, there's a magic moment in which speculation turns to reality. We're almost there with wireless broadband.

Three Point Airborne Trajectory Analysis
When all the information is available airborne equations are capable of returning speed estimates of a fine tolerance. Unfortunately an investigator is usually not able to collect all the information necessary for these calculations. As a result he is forced to use an airborne equation to range estimates, or seek a minimum estimate. Andrew Rich offers an approach to make fine tolerance speed estimates from an otherwise incompatible situation. By Andrew S. Rich

Invasion Of The Identity Snatchers
...He methodically researched my background and personal information until he could successfully impersonate me, and then subsequently set forth to change the mailing addresses of my most important financial statements.By Kelly Martin, SecurityFocus

How Fingerprint Scanners Work
Computerized fingerprint scanners have been a mainstay of spy thrillers for decades, but up until recently, they were pretty exotic technology in the real world. In the past few years, however, scanners have started popping up all over the place -- in police stations, high-security buildings and even on PC keyboards. You can pick up a personal USB fingerprint scanner for less than $100, and just like that, your computer's guarded by high-tech biometrics. Instead of, or in addition to, a password, you need your distinctive print to gain access.

Vector Momentum Analysis
An excellent introduction and discussion on momentum collision analysis. The article has many illustrations and much support for a graphic understanding of momentum. By George M. Bonnett

Hidden Google Tools You Can Use
Even if you consider yourself a Google expert, these 'hidden' tools and resources let you push the search engine's capabilities to the max.

Clandestine Tracking Devices
Many attorneys regularly rely on private investigators to conduct surveillances on matters ranging from suspected insurance fraud and domestic matters to cases involving theft and counter-industrial espionage operations. by: Roger H. Schmedlen, CPP, CFE, CII

Buying A Camcorder Made Easy
Purchasing a camcorder doesn't need to be a stress-inducing event. With a bit of insight, a clear idea of what type of camcorder you plan on buying, and the low-down on which stores will suit your needs, shopping for a camcorder can be a simple, satisfying experience.

Digital Fear Factor: Digital Camcorder Buyer’s Guide
Tips and considerations when buying a digital camera. by Charles Bloodworth-A Videomaker article.

How Identity Theft Works
You work hard every day to make a living and support yourself and/or your family. If you've read the HowStuffWorks credit report and credit score articles, then you know how to keep your credit clean so you can enjoy the benefits of all of that hard work. What happens, though, when you find out that someone has used your name to get a credit card and has run up thousands of dollars in charges that you are now going to have to convince the credit card company that you are not responsible for? What if they opened bank accounts in your name, committed crimes using your name, or worse? by Lee Ann Obringer

Spam! Lovely Spam!
The spam situation is getting worse--dramatically worse, in fact, as market-research firm International Data Corp. reported last week. Their studies show that spam now accounts for 38 percent of all North American e-mail. That adds up to 11 billion pieces of spam a day, and that number is growing daily. By Keith Ferrell

Understanding Business Legal Structures
You are starting a company and want to limit your personal liability for the debts of the business as well as the taxes you'll have to pay. This is a common goal for many new business owners. Having a good understanding of how business legal structures work, however, is not so common. So, what are legal structures and what type(s) should you consider? C-corporations, S-corporations, limited liability companies, sole proprietorships, and partnerships are some of the more common options for business legal structures. by Michael Molnar

Understanding the New Digital Negative Specification (DNG)
Format For Digital Cameras

Most consumer digital cameras today capture images in the JPEG format, but a higher-quality raw photo format is gaining in popularity among higher-end and professional camera models.

GPS Tracking And Receiving Systems And How It's Done
This very good articles gives you an overview of how GPS locating works with a focus on the GPS receiving system..

Delving Deep Inside The Searcher's Mind
Which search engines do searchers prefer and why? How do users use search engines to find the information they want? And how do searchers perceive paid versus free listings? New research offers insights into the workings of the searcher's mind.

 




Investigative News

Spam-Busting Plan Can't Buy a Pal
Microsoft's antispam Sender ID technology continues to get the cold shoulder. Now AOL adds its voice to a growing chorus of businesses and organizations shunning the proprietary e-mail authentication system. A WiredNews story.

Laser Injures - Delta Pilot's Eye
A pilot flying a Delta Air Lines jet was injured by a laser that illuminated the cockpit of the aircraft as it approached Salt Lake City International Airport last week, U.S. officials said.

Congress Passes Voyeurism Bill
The US House of Representatives has passed a bill to control the invasion of privacy with camera phones. It creates a crime of video voyeurism on federal property, such as national parks and public buildings, with a maximum punishment of a fine and one year in prison.

Software Bug Raises Spectra Of 'JPEG Of Death'
Flawed software code used by numerous Microsoft applications to render images mean that a specially constructed image file could hijack a computer or spread a virus.

Nigeria First! 28 Nigerian Scam Cyber Criminals Arrested
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in joint operations with the United States (US) Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has arrested 28 Internet fraudsters in Lagos.

Pulling Water Out Of Thin Air
An army needs water to operate, but it's a pain to tote the stuff
around. So Darpa is looking at ways to pull it out of thin air. By Noah Shachtman. A WiredNews Story

Counterfeit Goods Discovered In Apex
Acting on a tip about counterfeit goods from a private investigator, Apex police seized more than $800,000 worth of designer shirts, jackets, jeans, wallets and other apparel from a local business.

Movie Trade Group Sues for Illegal Downloads
The Motion Picture Association of America said on Wednesday it has sued a company that sells Internet downloads of current movies like "I, Robot" and "Spider-Man 2" without permission.

Document Scanners Make Debut at Airports
A new device that scans documents for traces of explosives has made its debut at four of the nation's busiest airports, where officials will use it to screen selected passengers.

Vehicle Data Recorders And Insurance Companies
It seems that Progressive Insurance of Mayfield, Ohio, has been paying (or, more accurately, giving them discounts on their insurance) customers to carry a data recorder along in their cars, recording every inch of their driving. After a few months, the data logger is disconnected from their cars and all the data downloaded to a computer, relaying every second of his or her driving to the insurer.

California is First to Enact Cell Phone Number Privacy Law
Californians will have the right to decide for themselves whether their cell phone number is listed in a planned wireless 411 directory under a new bill signed into law last Friday (Sept. 23) by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R), and Congress also is considering whether to give all Americans the same privacy protections

AOL Moves Beyond Passwords for Log-Ons
Passwords alone won't be enough to get onto America Online under a new, optional log-on service that makes AOL the first major U.S. online business to offer customers a second layer of security.

Police Nab Robber With Private Investigator's Help
A private investigator helped Hiawatha police nab a robbery suspect by following the man from the Kwik Shop that was allegedly held up.

Credit Card Leaks Continue At Furious Pace
Security firm claims 120 million accounts compromised this year....one firm that provides security services to merchants says it's been told by the card associations that last year, 60 million accounts were compromised, and this year, that figure will double to around 120 million.

Hundreds Sue Over WTC Health Effects
Hundreds of people who worked on the World Trade Center cleanup have filed a class-action lawsuit against the leaseholder of the towers and those who supervised the job, alleging they did little to protect workers from dust, asbestos and other toxins in the air.

Global Positioning To Track Sex Offenders in MA
Global positioning systems and electronic bracelets will be used to track more than 200 of the state's most serious sex offenders on probation or parole starting early next year, Governor Mitt Romney and state lawmakers announced yesterday.

Firms Stake Their Claim In Fraud Fight
From policies to private eyes, workers' comp tightens up. by Jan Norman

Man Arrested In UK For Cisco Source Code Theft
Case involves theft of the proprietary software blueprints used by Cisco's networking equipment .

Quick Read on Your Genetics
A new technology under development in Australia -- geneballs -- may be used to quickly and easily tell you your genetic makeup. By Daithí Ó hAnluain. A WiredNews story.

Software Pirates Caught
Prosecutors have named those charged in one of the biggest pirate software seizures in US history. The two-year investigation, dubbed Operation Digital Marauder, resulted in "one of the largest seizures of counterfeit software in the United States" with more than $56 million worth of counterfeit Microsoft, Adobe and Symantec products found.

CBS Fined $550,000 for Jackson Stunt
CBS got the bill Wednesday for Janet Jackson (news)'s eye-catching flash dance during the Super Bowl halftime show: a record $550,000.

German Security Firm Hires Hacker Awaiting Trial
A German security firm has hired the teen accused of writing the Sasser and Netsky worms.

Chicago Moving To 'Smart' Surveillance Cameras
A highly advanced system of video surveillance that Chicago officials plan to install by 2006 will make people here some of the most closely observed in the world. Mayor Richard M. Daley says it will also make them much safer.

Shooting Blanks
The Federal Bureau of Investigation and other government agencies really don't have a clear vision of how to leverage IT to fight cyber crime and enhance security.

Airlines Told to Turn Over Passenger Data
The Transportation Security Administration announced on Tuesday that it will order domestic airlines to turn over personal information about passengers to test a system that will compare their names to those on terrorist watch lists.

Boy, 11, Charged With Rape of Woman, 76
An 11-year-old boy was charged Wednesday with raping a 76-year-old neighborhood woman in her home as three of his friends stood watch.

Developing Smart Phones?
What will they think of next! A German telecommunications company said on Tuesday it is developing the first mobile phone that will alert users when their breath is bad or if they are giving off offensive smells.

Man Shoots Wife, Mistakes Her for Monkey
A Malaysian man shot and killed his wife after he mistook her for a monkey picking fruit in a tree behind their house, the New Straits Times said on Wednesday.

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