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nwrickert
sand groper
Premium,MVM
join:2004-09-04
Geneva, IL
kudos:7
Reviews:
·AT&T U-Verse
reply to doesitmatter

Re: Is it legal to give fake information on the Internet?

said by doesitmatter :

i'm just talking about giving information to sites that don't involve money at all.

So I shouldn't have been saying that my email address is <nobody@nowhere.com>
and I should not have said that my password is "secret"
and I should not have given out 123-45-6789 as a social security number?

What will the control freaks object to next?
--
AT&T Uverse; Buffalo WHR-300HP router (behind the 2wire gateway); openSuSE 12.3 RC2; firefox 19.0


red2

@fastwebnet.it
reply to mackey

Ahem. I remember this case well. There was outrage when cyberbullying led to a 13 year old's death. So they TRIED every way possible to charge her.

However, as I've already stated, unless they have a good REASON to go after you for faking your name (public outrage over a 13 year old's death is a good reason), merely faking a name is NOT a crime.

And what was the verdict?

"This case was heard by a jury, and the jury's verdict was announced on November 26, 2008.[1] The jury was deadlocked on Count One for Conspiracy, but unanimously found Drew not guilty of Counts Two through Four. The jury did, however, find Drew guilty of a misdemeanor violation of the CFAA.[4]

On November 23, 2008, Drew filed a motion for acquittal.[10] On Aug. 28, 2009, U.S. District Judge George H. Wu formally granted Drew's motion for acquittal, overturning the jury's guilty verdict.[10]" »en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_Sta···ori_Drew

So even when they tried to have the court INTERPRET that the violation of the TOS was a crime because of the cyberbullying of a 13 yr old, they could NOT make it stick.

MaynardKrebs
Heave Steve, for the good of the country
Premium
join:2009-06-17
kudos:4
reply to doesitmatter

said by doesitmatter :

i'm not talking about giving fake information to stores for fraudulent purposes.

i'm just talking about giving information to sites that don't involve money at all.

"On the internet nobody knows you're a dog" -- New Yorker magazine cartoon

Nor does anyone know if you're Dick Cheney in drag.

Protect yourself and use anonymous/fake info whenever you can. It drives the NSA wild.


NormanS
I gave her time to steal my mind away
Premium,MVM
join:2001-02-14
San Jose, CA
kudos:11
Reviews:
·SONIC.NET
·Pacific Bell - SBC
reply to nwrickert

said by nwrickert:

said by doesitmatter :

i'm just talking about giving information to sites that don't involve money at all.

So I shouldn't have been saying that my email address is <nobody@nowhere.com>

Hallo, Burda!!! Now we know who you really are!!!!!
--
Norman
~Oh Lord, why have you come
~To Konnyu, with the Lion and the Drum


fatness
subtle
Premium,ex-mod 01-13
join:2000-11-17
fishing
kudos:14

4 recommendations

reply to doesitmatter

quote:
Is it legal to give fake information on the Internet?
I'm the new pope.


vaxvms
ferroequine fan
Premium
join:2005-03-01
Wormtown
kudos:3
reply to doesitmatter

If I give a fake name on the internet will they prosecute the real me of the fake me?
--
The new Oldsmobiles are in early this year!



antdude
A Ninja Ant
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join:2001-03-25
United State
kudos:4
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable
reply to fatness

said by fatness:

quote:
Is it legal to give fake information on the Internet?
I'm the new pope.

No, I'm the new pope.


antdude
A Ninja Ant
Premium,VIP
join:2001-03-25
United State
kudos:4
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable

1 edit
reply to MaynardKrebs

said by MaynardKrebs:

said by doesitmatter :

i'm not talking about giving fake information to stores for fraudulent purposes.

i'm just talking about giving information to sites that don't involve money at all.

"On the internet nobody knows you're a dog" -- New Yorker magazine cartoon

Nor does anyone know if you're Dick Cheney in drag.

Protect yourself and use anonymous/fake info whenever you can. It drives the NSA wild.

I am an ant.
--
Ant @ AQFL.net and AntFarm.ma.cx. Please do not IM/e-mail me for technical support. Use this forum or better, »community.norton.com ! Disclaimer: The views expressed in this posting are mine, and do not necessarily reflect the views of my employer.

dave
Premium,MVM
join:2000-05-04
not in ohio
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Reviews:
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reply to antdude

said by antdude:

said by fatness:

I'm the new pope.

No, I'm the new pope.

One pope over the line...

MaynardKrebs
Heave Steve, for the good of the country
Premium
join:2009-06-17
kudos:4

1 recommendation

reply to vaxvms

said by vaxvms:

If I give a fake name on the internet will they prosecute the real me of the fake me?

They'll likely prosecute both of you and call it a criminal conspiracy.


Anonymous1

@verizon.net
reply to red2

You're right. The judge did acquit charges her of any CFAA misdemeanor, but the holding/reasoning is not binding in any way or fashion on any court (even the Central District of California). I'm pretty sure depending on the situation another district court would decide to hold differently.

Therefore legislation needs to make clear that a breach of contract (TOS) is not a violation of CFAA. In addition, as I have stated before there are STATE anti-hacking statutes as well as the federal anti-hacking statutes.

I seem to recall an Ohio case where a guy was using his work computer to solicit a dominatrix. If I remembered right no sex (or was it money) was involved, so they tried to charge him with hacking, basically by using the work computer to access craigslist, he was "overexceeding his authorization."

Found reference to the case. »www.geeksaresexy.net/2009/05/11/···hacking/



goalieskates
Premium
join:2004-09-12
land of big
reply to doesitmatter

Can we ask why you want to know?

Legal can mean a lot of things depending on TOS, country, etc.

But using fake information in this day and age doesn't automatically obscure your real identity, either. There are too many other things pointing at you and too many databases waiting to be run against each other. So a false birthdate isn't a big crime (women have lied about age for years), but if someone really wants to know, they will.



red2

@fastwebnet.it
reply to Anonymous1

said by Anonymous1 :

Therefore legislation needs to make clear that a breach of contract (TOS) is not a violation of CFAA. In addition, as I have stated before there are STATE anti-hacking statutes as well as the federal anti-hacking statutes.

There are two different issues at play here.

On the one hand, from a user and practical standpoint, faking your name, birthday, etc. to use a web service isn't inherently illegal. Just as you can decide to write a book under a pseudonym, I'd call this just a reasonable practice giving all the security risks that exist today.

On the other hand, if you do something that causes harm or damage to a government office, a large corporation or even a private individual, if it is worth their while, they will look at every possible statute and try to charge you with that crime, using any case that they find as a legal precedent. The "hacking" laws were not designed for this, and lets hope that these laws are clarified soon.

However, in many ways this is the same issue as what happens when you film a police officer not fulfilling his duties. In all likelihood he'll arrest you, and if there was audio recorded, depending on the state, he'll try to get the district attorney to charge you with violating the wiretapping law. Of course, that wasn't what that law was designed for.

The result is that nothing is 100% safe from prosecution, including many sexual acts between consenting adults in the privacy of their own home. That doesn't stop them from doing it or make me worry about them. Most of the laws just haven't caught up yet with the times we live in.


ROCINANTE
Original Member 007
Premium
join:1999-06-29
Hartsdale, NY
reply to doesitmatter

It's not legal but it is not illegal.
--
CRUNCH THIS!


dave
Premium,MVM
join:2000-05-04
not in ohio
kudos:8

eh?

'legal' = permitted under law
'illegal' = not permitted under law



ROCINANTE
Original Member 007
Premium
join:1999-06-29
Hartsdale, NY

Meaning that his specific example is not legislated either way.
--
CRUNCH THIS!


dave
Premium,MVM
join:2000-05-04
not in ohio
kudos:8

Sure, but that makes it legal, at least in 'the west'.


TampaVoIP

join:2002-05-10
Tampa, FL

1 recommendation

reply to doesitmatter

If it's not legal, probably every single person on a dating site, and probably most people on Facebook are in trouble.



red2

@fastwebnet.it
reply to dave

Sorry, IT IS LEGAL. There is no law that makes using another name illegal. Do we arrest all authors who use pseudonyms?

If you borrow a book from a friend and forget to return it, is that illegal? Of course not. If you friend accused you of having stolen it, the chances are that the police officer who is called would just ask you to return it. But if wanted to be difficult, he could arrest you, the the D.A. could decide to charge you and a judge could find you guilty.

So does this mean that not returning a book is illegal? No. It simply means that law is based on interpretation, so everything you do in life could potentially get you in trouble.



fatness
subtle
Premium,ex-mod 01-13
join:2000-11-17
fishing
kudos:14

Wait a minute. You mean your real name is not red2?



FFH
Premium
join:2002-03-03
Tavistock NJ
kudos:5

said by fatness:

Wait a minute. You mean your real name is not red2?

Is fatness your real name or a physical attribute?
--
Senate - get off you butts and actually create a budget that has spending cuts 3x the amount of tax increases like you promised.


DrStrange
Technically feasible
Premium
join:2001-07-23
West Hartford, CT
kudos:1

1 recommendation

reply to Snakeoil

If you need a fake e-mail address, use me@privacy.net
»Stopping Spam »How do I protect my email address when registering at web sites I don't trust?



DrStrange
Technically feasible
Premium
join:2001-07-23
West Hartford, CT
kudos:1

1 recommendation

reply to doesitmatter

said by doesitmatter :

i'm not talking about giving fake information to stores for fraudulent purposes.

i'm just talking about giving information to sites that don't involve money at all.

say someone signs up for a new email account, for example. if they give a fake name, fake birthday, fake zip code, etc, have they done anything against the law? if so, how does one maintain one's online privacy without breaking the law, aside from not using the internet at all?


Not in the USA, so long as you're not trying to commit a crime.

I'm not sure about Greece.


Anonymous1

@verizon.net
reply to red2

said by red2 :

Sorry, IT IS LEGAL. There is no law that makes using another name illegal. Do we arrest all authors who use pseudonyms?

If you borrow a book from a friend and forget to return it, is that illegal? Of course not. If you friend accused you of having stolen it, the chances are that the police officer who is called would just ask you to return it. But if wanted to be difficult, he could arrest you, the the D.A. could decide to charge you and a judge could find you guilty.

So does this mean that not returning a book is illegal? No. It simply means that law is based on interpretation, so everything you do in life could potentially get you in trouble.

Sorry if I'm being an ass here, but please don't say something is legal or illegal when clearly the ACLU and the EFF have been campaigning about this very issue because it's not clear cut. Those guys aren't stupid. Just because something carries a low risk of being enforced, it doesn't mean that it's not illegal.

The CFAA as stated is AMBIGUOUS. It's simply not written clearly, and a lawyer/judge can interpret a breach in Terms of Service as hacking and therefore criminal under the current language of the CFAA or other state statues.

The analogy of theft vs borrowing isn't very apt. Criminal theft statutes are no way even CLOSE to how ambiguously the CFAA is written. In order to commit common law theft, there needs to be (1) a taking of property; (2) without PERMISSION; (3) with the INTENT to deprive the rightful owner of such property.

It would be better if you argue that such an interpretation of the CFAA or other anti-hacking statutes would be unconstitutional, that is it's unconstitutionally vague therefore a breach of due process. Even then, this is not helpful to a person who has been thrown in jail and exhausted all legal methods of relief, therefore even if SCOTUS does decide that such an interpretation is unconstitutional, it doesn't necessary provide retroactive relief.

It would even be better if you simply stated, it's not clear whether it's illegal or legal but the chances of being prosecuted can be very minimal depending on the situation.

dave
Premium,MVM
join:2000-05-04
not in ohio
kudos:8

OK, I'll buy that argument. Logically, an action is either illegal or legal, but it does not follow that the status of a particular action is simply decidable.


MaynardKrebs
Heave Steve, for the good of the country
Premium
join:2009-06-17
kudos:4

1 recommendation

reply to doesitmatter

It probably should be illegal to provide real names on the internets.



red2

@fastwebnet.it
reply to Anonymous1

said by Anonymous1 :

Sorry if I'm being an ass here, but please don't say something is legal or illegal when clearly the ACLU and the EFF have been campaigning about this very issue because it's not clear cut.

I understand your point and appreciate a good discussion.

Let me try this another way.

There is NO specific law that I know of in the US that states that using a fake name, birthday, etc. is illegal. Rather, there is a Computer Fraud and Abuse Act that COULD be INTERPRETED, if DESIRED, in such a way as to hold almost anyone who uses the internet to be in violation. I'll buy that.

So, there needs to be INTENT, someone needs to have been "harmed" and "damages" sustained.

The example of theft was just to say that circumstances can be INTERPRETED many ways. It depends on context, intent, the harm caused, etc. Let's go back to the filming of a police officer example. Is that illegal? Absolutely not. But if you record audio, he could contend this is wiretapping. If you get in his way, he could contend that you interfered with the performance of his official duties. So does that mean "Don't film police officers. Because it is Illegal." No, it simply means that, as with many things in life, you need to use discretion.

I'll continue to use the name "red2", and you can continue to be "anonymous1". We both won't lose any sleep over it, though we both don't appreciate that the wording of the CFAA could potentially create an issue. Then again, few things in life are certain, other than death and taxes.


Thaler
Premium
join:2004-02-02
Los Angeles, CA
kudos:3
reply to doesitmatter

I'm 18/F/Oregon and have DDs.

I'll let you know if the cops come. Until then, its safe to say giving fake information on the internet is legal.



Anonymous1

@verizon.net
reply to red2

said by red2 :

The example of theft was just to say that circumstances can be INTERPRETED many ways. It depends on context, intent, the harm caused, etc. Let's go back to the filming of a police officer example. Is that illegal? Absolutely not. But if you record audio, he could contend this is wiretapping. If you get in his way, he could contend that you interfered with the performance of his official duties. So does that mean "Don't film police officers. Because it is Illegal." No, it simply means that, as with many things in life, you need to use discretion.

Interpretation is what lawyering is all about. It's basically plumbing with words. Words have meaning, and all the arguing is simply what is the meaning of a certain word. If one is a textualist (strictly looking at a statute's text and nothing else), there's nothing denying the interpretation that a TOS breach is a violation of the CFAA. The thing is, many judges and lawyers are textualists. Hell, there's a few justices on the US Supreme Court who are pretty strict textualists. They simply believe it's not their duty to go beyond what the text says, because that would in essence be legislating from the bench (simply unconstitutional). Therefore it's important that laws are written clearly. It's also our duties as citizens to push for clearly written laws.

-----------------
Yes.. In majority of states where all parties must consent to an audio recording, there's usually an exception where if it's obvious a recording is taking place, and the recording is in public, there's simply no reasonable expectation of privacy. So we simply don't run into this problem. I believe Maryland is an example of this, although its officers seem to have bad training.

Unfortunately there are certain states that are a bit backwards when it comes to wiretapping/eavesdropping laws such as Illinois and lack such an exception. When that happens you get ridiculous cases e.g. the kid who was peddling $1 art on the streets, and was charged with a misdemeanor for not having a proper license. But because he decided record with audio he was charged with an illegal recording. The judge refused to drop the illegal recording charges. Simply ridiculous.

----------

Btw. I'm anonymous1, you're red isn't a violation of any of dslreports' TOS. However, it certainly is on e.g. Google.


fatness
subtle
Premium,ex-mod 01-13
join:2000-11-17
fishing
kudos:14

1 recommendation

reply to FFH

said by FFH:

said by fatness:

Wait a minute. You mean your real name is not red2?

Is fatness your real name or a physical attribute?

Enough with the insults, But Cudget.
--
here comes leadership