It is hard to put a date on the time when the course of the war to deal with Internet crime took a turn for the better but I consider April 2008 to be a very significant date in Internet history.
The G20 World Leaders met in London in April 2008, to discuss policy on the shadow banking industry. It was the beginning of a period of history, which I describe as “Online Scammer’s Armageddon.” The first fruit of this liaison was the establishment of a multinational financial fraud enforcement task force, StopFraud.gov. This gave people the opportunity to report financial frauds from countries other than their own.
The Bernie Madoff fraud was uncovered in the same year (December 2008) and Madoff was sentenced to a total of 150 years in prison. Madoff fraud. Shortly after that Trevor Cook was caught and sentenced to 25 years. Trevor Cook was not in the same league as Madoff but he promoted CEP Trust payment processor which was run by his associates Reed and Kimbrell to rip off small investors. Trevor Cook. Many autosurfs followed but most of the operators vanished with their investors’ money. Fortunately some were closed down by legal authorities before this could happen and those operators are languishing in jail. These included the notorious Andy Bowdoin who used religion to promote the AdsurfDaily con.
The biggest ponzi to be closed by the SEC in the post Madoff era was ZeekRewards. The wheels of justice move slowly but they do move. Zeek Rewards
Many victims of ponzi scams are too embarrassed to report anything but that does seem to be changing. It is heartening to see that people do appear to be waking up to the fact that reporting white collar crimes is helping the authorities to get results.
“The Internet Fraud Complaint Center (IFCC)” received 49,711 complaints which were passed on to law enforcement or regulatory agencies for appropriate action between Jan and Dec 2001. The figures for the same period this year had increased to 269,422. FBI Report.
The highly respected British broadsheet newspaper (The Sunday Times) has taken a stand against a serial ponzi pimp, one Simon Stepsys and revealed how this con artist’s activities were discussed in parliament in 2001. However Stepsys continues to promote his ponzis and he is currently recruiting for his latest scam MyAdvertisingPays. The man will get caught sooner or later but we can hope that his activities will soon be curtailed.
There is a very encouraging report from the FBI news blog which was issued on Sept 9th 2015. The Justice Department in WASHINGTON announced their new policy to make the prosecution of Wall Street executives involved in financial fraud a major priority. Washington Justice Dept . It is hard to predict how much difference this will make but the wheels of justice seem to be revving up.