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A Pretextual Post

posted by Bob Lawless

"Pretexting" is the use of using false information or misrepresentations to gain access to another person's confidential phone or financial records. The word was barely in the public consciousness until a few weeks ago, until it was alleged that Heweltt-Packard used pretexting to obtain access to the personal phone records of its directors in an attempt to learn the source of a leak. Yesterday. the FTC announced that it had reached a settlement with an Internet firm that was using pretexting to obtain access to consumers' telephone and credit card records. Under the settlement, the malefactor has to disgorge its ill-gotten gains--all $2,700 of them.


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  • As a public service, the University of Illinois College of Law operates Bankr-L, an e-mail list on which bankruptcy professionals can exchange information. Bankr-L is administered by one of the Credit Slips bloggers, Professor Robert M. Lawless of the University of Illinois. Although Bankr-L is a free service, membership is limited only to persons with a professional connection to the bankruptcy field (e.g., lawyer, accountant, academic, judge). To request a subscription on Bankr-L, click here to visit the page for the list and then click on the link for "Subscribe." After completing the information there, please also send an e-mail to Professor Lawless ([email protected]) with a short description of your professional connection to bankruptcy. A link to a URL with a professional bio or other identifying information would be great.