Posting personal Information in threads.

Lynn Larsen

Lynn Larsen

Thanks to Graham for helping members get a copy of "Blue and Orange." The Gulf cars, GT40 and Porsche 917 alike, had a great influence on my love of sports cars and this looks to be a top shelf chronicle of those racing icons.

There were a couple of responses in that thread that have prompted this posting. Graham did offer to help those who contacted him directly and that is exactly how you should provide personal contact information. Please, for your own protection, provide things like addresses, home phone numbers and, of course, any financial or banking information in PMs or, preferably, in emails directed only to the intended entity. is one of the websites that are regularly scanned and indexed by most of the large indexing sites like Google, Alta Vista, Yahoo, etc. In this regard, we are a victim of our own popularity. I have been very surprised to see my own name pop up in a Google search because of a posting on So that if you post personal information, be advised, it is open and EASILY accessible to anyone who wants to use it for any reason what so ever. In this day and age, it does pay to be somewhat prudent with this kind of information. Gary Gibbs has another good example of how to make your information less easy to pick up by programs that regularly harvest information from the internet. You will notice on his 2G Motorsports website that he gives his email address as: (please replace the "_at_" with "@")

This will be missed by the vast majority of the harvesters, however a human with the ability to apply contextual logic is easily able to recognize the intended message. (Gary I didn't think you would mind a little fee publicity :) PM me if you'd like me to use a different example.)

Prudence and little tricks like this will reduce the amount of junk in your email inbox, at least, and may save you from identity theft at best.

This is a VERY good call Lynn

Although I write about ID theft and ID fraud for a living (I produced a 48-page guide on Financial Crime just 2 months ago) I had a shock recently when a fraudster stole <u>MY</u> Ebay identity. Among other things, they listed a mint Ford Mustang in the link below on my account, with a start price of $7,000. The photo's have since been removed:

Fake Ford Mustang on my Ebay account

Not only did the fraudster trace my Ebay password, but in order to divert emails to hijack any questions about the auction, and to furnish details of where the "winner's" payment for the non-existent Mustang should be made, they somehow found out my details in my Ebay account's next security level - my date of birth and mother's maiden name.

The only thing that I know I did wrong was have an Ebay password the same as the one I use on a few other websites. Rest assured, ALL my passwords are now different. The fact that the fraudster went the extra mile and unearthed the other information is pretty worrying.

So I guess that if you are reliant on keying in your birthday in any security questions for Ebay, Internet Banking etc, then inputting your birth date on websites like the calendar and mentioning your birthday and other personal information in a thread can be a bit of a giveaway for anyone intent on spending some time and research on stealing identities. And before you ask, I've never provided passwords etc in reply to any fake emails or pop-ups, and I have a decent firewall and every virus checker going to ensure that no-one can track my keystrokes.

This was a real lesson for me that thankfully, through email communication with Ebay, was resolved quickly. This included the refund of the listing fees to my account. And these fees were high, because the Mustang was a 'Featured Listing', etc, etc, which all costs money.

So as Lynn says, everyone should look carefully at their own personal info etc, because it is visible to the whole wide world - and, like I should have known, don't use the same password on every site - because there are some real bastards out there ...


Chris Duncan

I've always maintained that full anonymity is the best policy when online. Many wonder why I don't post my last name, like I'm being dishonest for not doing so.

There have been ongoing instances of people openly asking for further identification to be posted. And people are maligned for not giving more personal information in their profiles.

That's all very well and good... between honest people, but on a public forum it's another thing entirely.

The reason for anonymity is very simple, with just your first and last name an individual can usually find your address online. I'm not going to say how but it takes about 10 minutes in most cases. A phone number if listed can achieve the same result.

They know you have a GT40, they know your full name and now they know where you live.

Have you ever noticed that at any given time that the amount of unregistered anonymous users online on this forum is double the amount of registered users?

How do you know their all honest?

Chris Duncan

Here's just one recent example and this has happened numerous times.

""If you want people to be sympathetic to your problem, try identifying your self and include some info in your profile.""

Now I don't really care if someone wants to give a written invitation to anybody that comes along but I don't think you should ask others to do so if they haven't or don't want to.

I also think it's perfectly fine to expect someone to give you personal information on a private basis when conducting any kind of transaction etc. and would fully expect to do that when required.

I also think it wouldn't hurt if the gracious people that run this forum would support these policies and make it clear in the rules and guidelines.

Howard Jones

I guess I'm one of the people who would be guilty of asking for a name and other info in the profile.

So I'll restate my idea as to be clear. It is helpful if you would post in your profile where you live, Such as Northern Calif USA. Because if you are asking to look at a gt40 then I would be able to see that you are nearby and likely respond in kind. Likewise people ask all the time about their thinkamabob and not mention the kind of car they have. If it is in your profile then people with the same brand of car would be more apt to resopnd. As far as you name goes I guess I would just like to be able to respond to Bob S rather than "fastpimple/40" or some other stupid name.
This issue of idenity theft is a real one, you are correct and I thank you for you comments. I wonder if this is where the DMV found me? It might be a good idea not to post pictures of your car with your licence plates in view...... For several reasons.

Ron Earp

I second that Howard, that that is what I am getting at when I wrote the "Board Rules" that says "Use your real name, or something close to it."

Aba L, Harvey O, Jackie O, etc. sure beats the heck out of "fastpimple 40", "frknfast", etc. Just sort of lends itself to better communication I think and it is not going to raise the possibility of identity theft.

As an aside note - any information in your profile is not shared in any way, shape, or form with anyone else or other companies. In fact, I don't even know how to get a list of all of that from the forum software. Undoubtedly someone could, I'm sure, if they gain access to the files but there is precious little in the profiles other than email addresses, hobbies, etc. - certainly no credit card numbers or accounts.
Can you clarify this for me, if a member posts asking for info about a product etc and the site/ email /and physical address is already in the public domain ,ie. ph book, directory service etc ,is it OK to post this info? As we are spread all over the planet it must be a help for members to find stuff that they would normally never hear of. Regards Jack.
This kind of goes along with identity theft. If at a resturant you do not frequent, and you use a credit card. When the wait person runs your tab and brings you the slip to sign along with your card. Look at the card very carefully. There is a group out there who will bring a card to you that is not yours but an exact duplicate that is expired or a non existant card. You won't notice it until you use your card again and by then it will be too late. I know this isn't in line with the thread, but I thought it would help out. Also, be aware of any cashier who is on a cell phone while paying. They can snap a picture of either side or both sides of your card without your noticing. Then they have your security number.


Charlie Farley

As any peeps in the UK will have realised Charlie Farley is the name of one of our greatest comic hero's, namely Ronnie (God) Barker,

Ive been the subject of fraud. never use anything near my real name again, The tosser had access to my pc, a trusted friend(fiend).

Im quite prepared to converse with like names, i understand why they do it. Just wish some of the people on here wouldnt cut me down because of my obviuous 'false' name.
Oh well.


Charlie Farley

Fork handles?????

Te He

/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif
"It's BIG, it's BLACK, it's HAIRY an' I be afraid of it!" /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif

Oh dear - showing our age a bit here - and anyone who does not know what we're on about probably thinks we're from another planet about now....

ps - sorry - floated a bit 'off topic' - oop's /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/offtopic.gif


Lifetime Supporter
For what it is worth, some members have listed their date of birth in their bio. That is a mistake and your only helping identity thieves. I would remove my date of birth immediately. Same goes for the "Happy Birthday" wishes showing the ages of the forum members that appear on the calendar. /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/twocents.gif.