Reporting Internet Crooks to Law Enforcement
This part of our article is designed to help you fight
back against illegal spammers and hackers.
First of all, if you have dreams of "laying
your hands" on a hacker or spammer, you might as well forget
The illegal spammer or hacker relies on secrecy, falsehood, and other
trickery to conceal their real identity. The likelihood that a law
enforcement agency or Internet Service Provider (ISP) would reveal
a spammer or hacker's name to you is probably very slim without legal
You might now be thinking that there isn't much you
can do to stop a spammer or hacker without knowing their name. However,
the reality of the situation is that there are many things that you
can do to directly or indirectly make a spammer or hacker have a "very
Types of Illegal Spam
Before we discuss the types of things that you can do
to combat illegal spammers and hackers, I would first like to subdivide
illegal spam and hacking into three categories:
1. Attempts to steal from you by scamming or other
falsehoods. This is the most common type of illegal spam and it
is mostly an annoyance, as it is typically so ridiculous most people would just
laugh at it.
This type of illegal spam includes email topics like; "Have a
new head of hair in a week", "Get rich in one day",
"Lose 50 pounds by sleeping", "New viagra invented", and "We have 200 million dollars and want to share it with you".
Of course, if you've been "had" by one of these schemes,
you don't think they are very funny and you should complain about
them to law enforcement agencies. Otherwise, this type of spam should
be blocked or deleted.
2. Phishing attempts (also sometimes referred to as spear fishing). Phishing is the process of presenting to the email recipient a fake web page that looks very much like the real thing. These types of emails are usually pretend Banks, Ebays, or Paypal web sites. They will typically have some urgent message to try to get you to log into their fake web page such as, "Your account balance is low", "Please confirm your password", "Please log in to update your account", etc.
These are all what are known as phishing attempts and should never be opened. If you feel compelled to check out your account then go online like you always do and check it.
Never, never, never, click on links in emails to check any of your accounts. Use the regular links you have saved or use a well known search engine to get the address.
If you clink on the fake link and put in your account information, ... you will be robbed.
2. Attempts to commit other more serious crimes against
you or your family.
This would include threats against you or your family, attempts to
seduce or endanger children, identity theft, credit card theft, frauds,
and other types of crimes.
These crimes should be immediately reported to law enforcement agencies.
What you do to fight back against illegal spammers and hackers
depends on the nature of the spam you receive, how threatening
you think it is, and how much time you are willing to spend complaining
and tracking down the originator.
Reporting Illegal Spam and Hack Attempts to Law
Report threats, harassment, frauds, and other crimes
to law enforcement agencies. If you believe a spammer or hacker is
trying to commit a crime against you or your family then complain
to law enforcement officials. You can complain to local police, state
agencies, and federal agencies.
Online complaints can also be made to the following
1. Follow state procedures for reporting illegal
spam or hack attempts. There are currently 38 states that have laws regulating unsolicited bulk email (UBE).
You should become familiar with your state's laws and determine if
there are any designated state agencies that you can report the spam
If your state doesn't have a UBE law, you can still report illegal
spam to your state's attorney general.
2. Complain to the FTC. The Federal Trade Commission
has an online
consumer complaint form which you can use to report spam. They
amass the spam in a law enforcement database and track down major
illegal spammers. They do not resolve individual complaints.
If you want to complain to the FTC, I suggest you just forward your
spam to them at Spam@UCE.GOV and save
yourself the time of filling out the form.
|Note: You can forward any type of spam to the FTC as they keep a spam
database for law enforcement purposes.
You can also complain to the FTC about identity
theft and about problems with foreign
companies. Again, they will add your complaint to the database,
however they do not respond to individual complaints.
3. Complain to the FBI. The FBI has a FBI
Tips and Public Leads online form which you can use to report
scams, frauds, suspicious activity, or other types of crime.
4. Complain to the Internet Fraud Complaint Center.
The Internet Crime Complaint Center (ICCC) is a partnership between
the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the National White Collar
Crime Center (NW3C).
ICCC accepts on-line
Internet fraud complaints from either the person who believes they
were defrauded or from a third party to the complaint.
Next we will discuss what to do about the less serious
"everyday" type spam that all of us receive on a daily basis.
Next Getting Illegal Spammers and Hackers Kicked
Off the Internet
Spammers and Hackers Off the Internet >>
<< Back to Avoiding
Spammers and Hackers