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back to article How con men snatched £100,000+ in iPads and other kit from IT disties

A network of fraudsters has swiped iPads and other consumer tech worth at least £100,000 from IT distributors and resellers, according to credit reference agency Graydon UK. The swindles stretch back 18 months and typically involved members of the network either hijacking a dormant company or setting up a bogus firm and filing …

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Bronze badge

Hmm, if only there was a way to uniquely identify a device, then someone could report a stolen device to apple/google/etc and they could check when a device connects to the app store. If no one could use the stolen devices theft would reduce a considerably.

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Anonymous Coward

Prey?

Could install Prey by default although don't Apple devices have something similar built in?

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Silver badge

Kill Switch

It would work fine and it is relatively easy to do, but the privacy and conspiracy nutjobs would see it as a kills switch that the manufacturer could use in an incredibly convoluted corporate extortion scheme.

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FAIL

How do you figure? The crooks in this case would be selling pristine ipads, still shrink wrapped and ready for activation. Even if the buyer is super paranoid and insists that the boxes be opened and the ipad turned on before handing over money would see a perfect, brand new ipad. When turned on, the ipad would show the docking/activation logo, just like a genuine, unstolen ipad.

The mug then hands over his money, and the seller is gone. Only when the mug gets home and tries to activate his ipad does he get told "actually, this is a stolen ipad, and we aren't going to let you use it".

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FAIL

KYC

KYC - Know Your Client, Due Diligence, whatever you want to call it, these distributors are obviously employing monkeys.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: KYC

The monkeys are in Companies House IMHO.

As I have observed before, if they really cannot be tasked with doing even the most basic checking they do not deserve the job and should be replaced with an automated system as soon as possible. For a place that is supposed to act as a reference it is horribly broken, making it spectacularly easy for fraudsters to abuse it so maybe it's time to save some money there.

It's not even going to be a complex job to replace them with an electronic system - they add surprisingly little value.

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Re: KYC

Part of that is true, but all companies I have ever worked for have done their own background checking (even our suppliers) and if you are going to give a line of credit to anyone, if you do not do your own due diligence on them, you are sadly neglecting your duty to your own interests.

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Silver badge
Joke

Hmmm

Check the skips out the back of Samsung HQ perhaps (see ICON)

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Anonymous Coward

Greedy sales people

Pay the sales people a decent wage and get rid of bonuses <Cue laughter>

Knew one sales person who would sell 10 items, place an order for 100 on the system, get bonus and then create overstock / return for the extra 90 items at start of next month...repeat until caught and given option to leave or have police involved. Never saw them again.

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WTF?

Re: Greedy sales people

You hit the nail on the head oh wise one............. I watched Wall Street 2 film yesterday which if you listen to the dialogue it makes some interesting points about a massively corrupt society.......

which I feel boils down to a simple distinction

Socialism > Capitalism > Greed.

Sadly there is too much greed and self serving self interest all over the place; MP's pay rises, massive pay off's for so called public servants, CEO's not just with their noses in the trough but practically immersed, even regulatory bodies.................massive payouts for ex FSA staffs as that Quango is closed.

No doubt we will hear in the coming weeks how many of those that got paid off from the FSA have immediately found new jobs in the Treasury, Bank of England or replacement organisation. Just like yesterdays stories of NHS payoffs as 174 departments as part of the restructure / cost cutting were closed to be replaced by 214 new ones.

Thats apparently progress..........................EPIC FAIL!!!!!! again

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good cons just come back under a new name

So whats new? this con has been going on for decades, back in the day these fraudsters were known as

" long firms" they set up a bogus business and are in it for the long haul. msny a london gang ran these

" long firms" netting themselves a fortune from company's too greedy for profit to do proper checks...

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Anonymous Coward

The `Long' Firm rediscovered ..

"Alan Norton, head of intelligence at Graydon UK, said it had pieced together the scams using internal systems to identify unusual characteristics of trade, which included the fraudsters using the same VAT numbers for front firms."

Didn't this used to be known as the Long Firm 1879 ..

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Bronze badge
Mushroom

weakness...

OK. one may lose one now and again but this kind of thing is preventable with sensible processes in place.

I suspect focus has been too often on the bigger sales leaving unsecured space at the back door for opportunists and planned fraudsters such as these.

It's so easy at times, like taking candy from children...

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FAIL

Crime doesn't pay ?

Isn't there a zero or two missing off this report ? Even assuming that the £100,000 quoted - ignoring the + - reflects the wholesale value of this kit and therefore represents the sums that might be achieved on the bent market, over 18 months that is £ 65,000 pa.

Unless it is claimed that all this was done by one criminal mastermind on his / her own, it sounds to me like an awful lot of work for not very much return. Filing paper work; generating credit references; premises to accept delivery; finding punters to buy the gear - Nah, I'll just stick to my pension thank you.

Chris Cosgrove

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