IT | Security

Absolute Uncovers South African Scam

By: Absolute Team | 8/5/2009

As Absolute continues to expand globally, so too do its recovery operations. A recent recovery required our Theft Recovery Team to liaise with authorities in South Africa – where an interesting scam was uncovered.

The Absolute Theft Recovery Team began tracking a laptop weeks after it was stolen from a customer’s South African home. Initially, it proved difficult to determine the laptop’s new, unauthorized user; a variety of aliases were gleaned from the machine. As the investigation continued, however, Absolute pieced together the scenario.

It appeared that the laptop was being used in an intricate online scam. Posing as a female, the unauthorized male user created false accounts on several dating websites, under a variety of aliases. He contacted men in various countries, working to develop an online relationship. Once this rapport was established, he crafted a series of ‘sob stories’ to highlight 'her' vulnerability and request that the online love interests send money to help. It appears that ‘her’ story was convincing, as several sympathetic men sent substantial amounts of cash.

The Recovery Team was able to determine the laptop’s location, and, by compiling details with local police, positively identify the unauthorized user. Using this information, police tracked down the man and successfully recovered the machine. The investigation continues.

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