Identity Theft Expert Robert Siciliano\n\nThe FBI reported that last year, organized criminals made double what was reported in 2008. Phishing emails containing the name and logo of the FBI were one of the top money makers for scam artists.\n\nSuccessful scams included auction scams where products were bought and paid for but product was not delivered. Advanced fee scams also topped the list.\n\nScammers will say and do anything to get a person to part with their money.\n\nNever automatically trust over the phone or via the internet. Unless the business is one that is well established online; don\u2019t ever send money that you can\u2019t get back. Never send money in response to an email or a phone call or even a classified ad. Money orders and wiring money have less security than a credit card does.\n\nAnytime the transaction involves wiring money, that\u2019s a dead giveaway. In any virtual transaction, I\u2019d suggest using a credit card, but not without first checking the legitimacy of the business or the individual. A quick scan online of a company, individual, or even the nature of a transaction can often provide enough information to make an informed decision.\n\nScareware was also a big player. Studies show that organized criminals are earning $10,000.00 a day from scareware. That\u2019s approximately 200 people a day getting nabbed. Some \u201cdistributors\u201d have been estimated to make as much as $5 million a year.\n\nWhat makes the scam so believable is there is actual follow through of the purchasing of software that is supposed to protect you. There is a shopping cart, an order form, credit card processing and a download, just like any online software purchase.\n\nThe software is sometimes known as \u201cAntiVirus2009\u201d \u201cWinFixer,\u201d \u201cWinAntivirus,\u201d \u201cDriveCleaner,\u201d \u201cWinAntispyware,\u201d \u201cAntivirusXP\u201d and \u201cXP Antivirus 2008.\u201d These are actually viruses or spyware that infect your PC, or just junk software that does nothing of value.\n\nInvest in Intelius identity theft protection and prevention. Not all forms of identity theft can be prevented, but identity theft protection services can dramatically reduce your risk. (Disclosures)\n\nRobert Siciliano Identity Theft Speaker discussing Ransomeware on Fox Boston.