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IDTheft Expert - New Member


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Found this site while I was researching for an article, wanted to make everyone aware there *is* help.

My name's Jake Stroup, I'm an identity theft risk management consultant living in the midwest. I write for the New York Times online forums, About.com, and consult with insurance professionals about how to protect their clients.

If you have an identity theft issue you can feel free to PM me for free advice. I'm big on helping people, and know that the biggest problem facing identity theft victims is the host of so-called "experts" who offer all sorts of useless advice.

Also, although this is a credit forum, please keep in mind that identity theft can have a much broader impact in your life. I'll start posting links to my articles once I've lost the "newbie" moniker, but for now try going to about.com, and search the term "identity theft" - you'll find what you want there more than likely.

Looking forward to helping out!

Success;

Jake Stroup

Identity Theft Guide

About.com

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Welcome aboard!

Just a word of warning...this board does has rules against members offering "advice for a fee" to other members. We also prefer that all discussions be done in open forum rather than via PM or phone, so that we can all benefit from the information.

We look forward to your contibutions....

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...this board does has rules...

*grins* You'll find out pretty quick that I'm a wordsmith. That was your freebie.

against members offering "advice for a fee" to other members.

That's really pretty standard on message boards. I didn't see any rules along those lines, but I figure they're out there. I'm accustomed to giving my advice for free online - NYT compensates me for my articles, I spill my guts there. Mostly I expect I'll just point people that direction if I've covered the subject already.

We also prefer that all discussions be done in open forum rather than via PM or phone, so that we can all benefit from the information.

Identity theft can be very personal. If someone wants to contact me privately to discuss their particulars, I want them to know they can have my candor and respect to their privacy. Everyone wants an expert they can talk to directly, I'm just an "affordable" one (cf. previous topic).

We look forward to your contibutions....

Thanks, it's great to feel welcomed.

Oh, as long as we're handing out words of warning, everyone should know I'm pretty much a "shoot-from-the-hip" guy who "calls-a-spade-a-spade" (yeah, I know, back-to-back clichés, pretty neat huh?) I've never been much for candy coating things, and I don't do PC very well. If I've managed to not be abrasive, I call it a good day. C-level execs are pretty much "fish-or-cut-bait" in their attitudes, and I have to admit it's rubbed off on me over the years.

So...*rubbing hands together*... what's first?

(Oh, and will someone please tell me how to create a sig on this board? Talk about non-intuitive interface... everything is buried under something else!)

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Oh, as long as we're handing out words of warning, everyone should know I'm pretty much a "shoot-from-the-hip" guy who "calls-a-spade-a-spade" (yeah, I know, back-to-back clichés, pretty neat huh?) I've never been much for candy coating things, and I don't do PC very well.

Great, nice to meet you. I have the same style, as you might have noticed if you have been lurking before you posted. In fact, we have several great posters that share your style. So now that we are all on the same page and have exchange warnings, nothing personal.

If someone wants to contact me privately to discuss their particulars, I want them to know they can have my candor and respect to their privacy. Everyone wants an expert they can talk to directly, I'm just an "affordable" one.

However, calling yourself an expert does not make you an expert. Furthermore, even throwing out a name of somebody that is or might be an expert does not mean you are that person, even if that person is truly an expert.

You can say you are anybody that when Googled will turn up positive feedback, and not be that person. I can be President Obama by signing up under a new account and posting a link to the white house in case somebody wants to check me out.

I'll give you the benefit of the doubt, but as you pointed out, ID theft can be very personal and sometimes people are emotional (as they should be).

So, I'll just caution anybody to use some common sense before they start disclosing "private" matters via PM to somebody claiming to be an expert, promising privacy, and just joined today.

That just raises red flags that the offer could simply be to gain trust by referring to yourself as an expert, when in fact you are just fishing for information to commit ID theft.

Nothing personal, just little short on the PC lingo myself, but I also can call a spade-a-spade. Right now you have zero credibility to be making offers that posters contact you with private, personal info, just because you say you're an expert and promise to keep things confidential. Oh, almost forgot, welcome. :)%

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Great, nice to meet you. I have the same style, as you might have noticed if you have been lurking before you posted. In fact, we have several great posters that share your style. So now that we are all on the same page and have exchange warnings, nothing personal.

However, calling yourself an expert does not make you an expert. Furthermore, even throwing out a name of somebody that is or might be an expert does not mean you are that person, even if that person is truly an expert.

You can say you are anybody that when Googled will turn up positive feedback, and not be that person. I can be President Obama by signing up under a new account and posting a link to the white house in case somebody wants to check me out.

I'll give you the benefit of the doubt, but as you pointed out, ID theft can be very personal and sometimes people are emotional (as they should be).

So, I'll just caution anybody to use some common sense before they start disclosing "private" matters via PM to somebody claiming to be an expert, promising privacy, and just joined today.

That just raises red flags that the offer could simply be to gain trust by referring to yourself as an expert, when in fact you are just fishing for information to commit ID theft.

Nothing personal, just little short on the PC lingo myself, but I also can call a spade-a-spade. Right now you have zero credibility to be making offers that posters contact you with private, personal info, just because you say you're an expert and promise to keep things confidential. Oh, almost forgot, welcome. :)%

LOL Well spoken! Your warning is timely, and goes a direction that's only recently starting to be discussed. Only last week I brought the topic up in the article "Who Are You Online?" The problem problem runs down two different avenues. First, the shift in perceived identity from a bunch of numbers (with our bank/credit company/school/DMV/SSA etc. ad nauseum) to the more personal "self" we put online via social media (Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, etc. ad nauseum.) Second, the simple fact that (as you point out) anyone can say they are whoever they wish without challenge, but Any victim of identity theft will tell you convincing people you are the actual person being impersonated is a trying and tedious task.

To be clear, I'm not soliciting anyone to contact me via PM, I am making myself available for those who wish to. It's in my nature to contribute to the relief of those from whom advantage has been taken (+3 points for grammar, WOOT!) but again, as you point out, there's little reason to believe that from someone who so recently joined the conversation.

More on point, your advice is very sound, and I do expect to spend the bulk of my time posting to public forums while I'm here. My credentials and bio are available on About.com - go to any article written by me (Jake Stroup) and click on the name to get to the bio page. However, the easiest thing to point out would be that contacting Jake Stroup, Identity Theft Guide on About.com via email would be a sure-fire way to make sure you are really reaching me (or him, whatever.) Any concerns could be allayed thus.

Perhaps the administrators have some method for proving identity? I could get my editor to send press credentials or some such?

And finally, thank you for the warm (if somewhat cautious) welcome. If more people approached things with the same attitude, I suspect we would have far less of an issue with violations of personal privacy. (Although that would also mean I would have a different line of work, but *hey* I could live with that.)

Edited by idtheft.guide
GF had a great add-on
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ID theft is one of my big interests. I also work in the network and computer security field. Of course, I could be lying about that, too. You don't really know.

And, I still don't know who you are. I could go read NYT or About.Com and see what you claim you said there. But I won't know that the person who writes there is "idtheft.guide" here. If, OTOH, the writings THERE assert the author there is "idtheft.guide" at the creditinfocenter.com forums, then I could believe that author is claiming it (your writings here would confirm it). Readers of those writings at NYT and About.Com should not believe what is written there as to the claim to be "idtheft.guide" here unless they read here and see.

So when you write in NYT and About.Com stating you are "idtheft.guide" at the creditinfocenter.com forums, post (public) a link to the article there and then we can see that you are all one in the same.

In the security field we call this "authentication". Even if you do as suggested, it's only partial identification. We won't know if you are the real Jake Stroup. You can post a photo of a driver's license and we still won't know because that can be faked. But for the purpose of writing here, we don't really need to know that. I don't think anyone here knows my real identity. I don't know it of anyone else here (though I suspect certain identity of a couple posters). We all just interact here in terms of our identities here. It's mostly safer than way.

I generally advise people to NOT give details to strangers that they would not feel comfortable posting online. I don't and won't.

I suggest interacting in the public space here and see how it goes. Welcome aboard.

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ID theft is one of my big interests. I also work in the network and computer security field. Of course, I could be lying about that, too. You don't really know.

And, I still don't know who you are. I could go read NYT or About.Com and see what you claim you said there. But I won't know that the person who writes there is "idtheft.guide" here. If, OTOH, the writings THERE assert the author there is "idtheft.guide" at the creditinfocenter.com forums, then I could believe that author is claiming it (your writings here would confirm it). Readers of those writings at NYT and About.Com should not believe what is written there as to the claim to be "idtheft.guide" here unless they read here and see.

So when you write in NYT and About.Com stating you are "idtheft.guide" at the creditinfocenter.com forums, post (public) a link to the article there and then we can see that you are all one in the same.

In the security field we call this "authentication". Even if you do as suggested, it's only partial identification. We won't know if you are the real Jake Stroup. You can post a photo of a driver's license and we still won't know because that can be faked. But for the purpose of writing here, we don't really need to know that. I don't think anyone here knows my real identity. I don't know it of anyone else here (though I suspect certain identity of a couple posters). We all just interact here in terms of our identities here. It's mostly safer than way.

I generally advise people to NOT give details to strangers that they would not feel comfortable posting online. I don't and won't.

I suggest interacting in the public space here and see how it goes. Welcome aboard.

Thanks, Torden - I appreciate the insight.

I agree, the best way to handle things is just to say what I need to in public posts. In my eagerness to offer help, I put the cart before the horse I suppose. Regardless, as time goes on, people will see that I have a good grip on the issues, and mean well (even if I'm a bit stodgy on occasion.)

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