Bob “Juice” Bokowitz: The life of a Digital Asset Criminal – Part 2
In the first part of this open series, career criminal, Bob “Juice” Bokowitz, described how he used social engineering in order to infiltrate the accounts of unsuspected suburbanites.
Part 2 takes on the domainer universe and its microcosm of scammers and snake-oil peddlers.
Bob “Juice” Bokowitz explains:
“For years, I kept an eye on domain properties. Those fine, intangible items that one can have but not be able to hold – just like stocks in an open stock market.
My first attempt to test the waters, so to speak, was with Network Solutions. Back in the day, one could register domains and ask to pay via check.
So I would sign up with fake accounts, registering domains with a perpetual IOU. Network Solutions would mail reminders for 60 days, to an address down the block from Danno’s Tavern.
It was funny watching the white envelopes with the globe logo pile up at the doorstep of the old, deserted house. Finally, Network Solutions stopped offering that option, but in the meantime, armed with free web hosting from Xoom and Geocities, I was able to build my network of schemes.
One day, I received a call from a company called GoDaddy. They were actually making cold-calls from the WHOIS, asking to transfer the domain under their control and away from Network Solutions. I created several accounts, promising to transfer domains to them, while getting discounts for web hosting.
I never transferred the domains and used a lot of free bandwidth by calling up support and impersonating an irate company executive. They were so eager to please the small number of their customers, that they’d do anything – without as much as verifying the accounts.
Of course, one can catch more flies with honey than vinegar. I often sweet-talked the front desk operators of telecoms, usually bored in front of their switchboards. By the end of the call, I had established a known jump-point I could use, to get onto my next target: middle management.”
To be continued.