Cyber Hawks that Stalk!

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A new HEIGHT of cybercrimes, stalking, stolen identities, cyber-corruption and criminal predators with a keypad

Do you believe your online image, reputation and character are protected? Firewalls broken – hackers hacking – and you are now virtually invaded! Learn from Sue Scheff’s $11M defamation verdict that changed Internet Culture.

Google Bomb (n) or “link bomb”: Internet slang for a certain kind of attempt to raise the ranking of a given page in results from a Google search. (Wikipedia)

Sue Scheff was a regular person who found out in the most evil way what slander awaited her in cyberspace. Scheff’s business, reputation, and identity were stolen, livelihood ruined, her mental health threatened after viral defamatory statements emerged. Scheff was hit with a Google bomb.

Like an epidemic, Google bombs are the latest lethal legal weapon to destroy character and reputations. Our First Lady was hit. No one is immune.  We must be proactive in maintaining our virtual profile.

Still standing and thriving after all she endured both personally and professionally, Scheff now helps others understand the depths of the Internet and what happens when revenge turns to e-venge.

IN THE NEWS: Over 400 newspapers have featured this landmark case. Including a 4-Part LA Times Series, Washington Post, Huffington Post, Wall Street Journal, USA Today, AARP, and many more.  Here are snippets of Scheff’s advice on how to protect your image:

 

  • Wall Street Journal “Until you go through a vengeful attack on your good name, service or business, you have no idea what a Google bomb can do to you.”
  • AARP“Limit the amount of information you provide on the Internet,” she now advises others. “The Internet is not only an educational tool, it can be a lethal weapon,”
  • Washington Post“if you don’t own your own name, someone else will.”
  • Family Circle“Use extreme caution…Whatever you say in the kitchen goes into your kid’s ears and can come out on the computer screen – and go viral!”
  • LA Times – We need very real repercussions for violating a reporter’s privacy in a motel room with a peep camera for mass voyeuristic consumption.”

 LA Times –The malicious stroke of a key has become the equivalent of a cyberbullet.” – Sue Scheff

Order Google Bomb today!

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Sue Scheff: Free Speech, Facebook, students, teachers and the law

With the recent headlines about Katherine Evans and her victory in Broward County, Florida regarding a judge’s ruling, stated that she is allowed to sue her former principal. 

Backed by lawyers from the Florida branch of the ACLU, Evans won her first victory this week when Judge Barry Garber ruled that she could proceed with the case because her Facebook group was protected by the First Amendment. “Evans’ speech falls under the wide umbrella of protected speech,” Garber wrote in his opinion. “It was an opinion of a student about a teacher, that was published off-campus, did not cause any disruption on-campus, and was not lewd, vulgar, threatening, or advocating illegal or dangerous behavior.” – Digital Trends

Free speech does not condone defamation, however is what Katherine Evans wrote defamatory?  That doesn’t seem to be the case, the story is about the punishment that Evans received following posting ugly comments about one of her teachers.

Katherine Evans started the “Ms. Sarah Phelps is the worst teacher I’ve ever met!” group on Facebook back in 2007 and featured a photograph of the teacher and an invitation for other students to “express your feelings of hatred,” prompting a three-day suspension from school principal Peter Bayer.  The suspension came two months after the page was taken down.  Evans was also removed from Advanced Placement classes.

Evans wants to have the suspension removed from her disciplinary record and receive a nominal fee for the violation of her First Amendment rights.

Maybe this is an example of the old cliché, “if you don’t have something nice to say, don’t say anything.”  Or in today’s digital world, “if you don’t have something nice to post, don’t post it.”

Remember, what goes online, stays online.  What you post today can come back to haunt you later.  If you are angry with someone, dislike your boss or teacher – think twice before you post about it.  Today once you put it out there, it virtually impossible to take it back, and most people don’t want to end up in a courtroom – no matter what side you are on.  There are never any winners.  Except the lawyers, in my opinion.

Although Katherine Evans has been given the green light to file her case, free speech lives on, however when will people start realizing enough is enough with some forms of Internet abuse?  Cyberbullying, Internet predators, and sexting are just the start of the ugliness that lurks online. 

Eventually the laws need to catch up with the free for all cyberspace. 

Read more on Examiner.

Sue Scheff: Reader’s View Gives Fantastic Reveiw of Google Bomb

Google Bomb: The Untold Story of the $11.3M Verdict That Changed the Way We Use the Internet

John W. Dozier Jr. and Sue Scheff
Health Communications, Inc. (2009)
ISBN 9780757314155
Reviewed by Irene Watson for Reader Views (01/10)

First of all, I have to say “Google Bomb” may be the most important book anyone that has Internet presence should read. Owning a number of online businesses myself, I was eager to read this book because I wanted to know more about Sue Scheff’s experience and the successful outcome of a lawsuit. Her case was the first in Internet defamation and landed her $11.3M. But, there was so much more I learned than her story.
Written by Sue Scheff herself, as well as John W. Dozier Jr., a Internet law attorney, “Google Bomb” not only tells of Scheff’s experience with defamation by nasty people but also the emotional trauma she went through. For a site that started off being a helpful site to parents of troubled teens, it ended up smeared all over the Internet as deceptive. The interesting aspect is that the disparaging comments went viral and ended up on the top of the Google search engine. Consequently, potential visitors to Scheff’s site were redirected to derogatory and defaming information.

Dozier’s parts of the book follow Scheff’s comments and experience. They intermingle, giving the reader a fuller understanding of how others can control your site by, for e.g., creating anchor texts on their site but using your information and directing the visitors to their site where the defamatory information exists. Or, in other cases, the anchor texts are used by competitors so the visitors are directed to their sites instead of yours.

Dozier also explains how you can protect yourself against such attacks and gives suggestions of some Internet companies that offer this service. He also goes into copyright violations, cyberstalking, the Striesand Effect, hacking, spamming, and theft of trademarks. As I mentioned before, this could be the most important book you could read. It sure is for me. I used a full container of sticky tabs to mark important information and areas I need to re-read and implement.

“Google Bomb” is highly recommended because it gives you important information of what could happen to innocent people if not protected or on top of matters. Unfortunately there are many laws not in place to protect us on the Internet so we have to take our own responsibility to be cognizant and one way is to sign up for Google Alerts. This book isn’t meant to scare the site holders, but to inform them of what could happen if not aware. Awareness is the key, and by reading “Google Bomb” I can guarantee you will become more aware than you were before.

On www.readersview.com

Sue Scheff: Cybercrime TV to Present World Congress on School Cyber Threats

Cybercrime TV is inviting experts to address 600 policy makers at the International School Safety Convention in Denver, Colorado, April 22-23, 2010, as part of a special session on cyber threats faced by schools, students,teachers, and parents.

Washington, DC December 21, 2009 — Cybercrime TV (http://www.cybercrime.tv ) is inviting experts to address 600 policy makers at the International School Safety Convention in Denver, Colorado, April 22-23, 2010, as part of a special session on cyber threats faced by schools, students, teachers, and parents.

The program chair for the session is Andy Purdy, former U.S. Department of Homeland Security cyber head, and founder of Cybercrime TV. High-definition television highlights of the proceedings will be distributed to media outlets worldwide. Cybercrime TV will also produce with participating speakers print materials and interactive presentations.

Purdy expects topics to include cyber security, cyber bullying, sexting, illegal file sharing, online predators, privacy issues, and potential threats to “middle-mile” broadband projects that connect schools to community responders.

Purdy is particularly interested in announcements about new initiatives that can impact legislation and national investment in securing schools.

Purdy’s invitation extends to book authors, filmmakers, documentary producers, researchers, lawmakers, community leaders, and technology developers.

Participants can use the website, Cybercrime.TV, to prepare for the convention and build a community of interest around their themes. The site offers registered members a variety of online tools for collaborating on video and multimedia presentations, as well as private workspaces for connecting with convention attendees.

The International School Safety Convention will take up 12 meeting spaces on the Denver campus of Johnson &Wales University College of Business. The 2-day event is being organized by international school safety leader Michael Dorn for the Denver-based groups, School Safety Partners (http://www.schoolsafetypartners.org ) and the Foundation for the Prevention of School Violence.

Attendees will be primarily high-level decision makers responsible for major school safety funding, business leaders interested in public-private partnerships, and members of the school construction community.

Within the convention, the main feature will be the innovative World Congress on School Safety, which will include Purdy’s session on school cyber threats. The fast pace of the agenda is designed to optimize group problemsolving.

Speakers will have a brief period of time in the Jared Polis Auditorium to present their views before a review panel and the general assembly, followed by questions and answers. They will then proceed to an adjoining conference room to continue their discussions with members of the media and other attendees.

In addition, speakers may take part in presentations covering all aspects of school safety prevention, preparedness, response, and recovery, scheduled in 2 more conference spaces.

The convention will be immediately followed by a 30-day television distribution window, during which broadcast video will be distributed to journalists, television news producers, and online and mobile news video providers at more than 25,000 news organizations on all continents.

Experts interested in participating in Purdy’s school cyber threats session are welcome to register at Cybercrime.TV and provide a brief profile.

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 Also on Examiner.

Sue Scheff: Wall Street Journal shares my story!

I was thrilled to be part of Columnist Elizabeth Bernstein’s articlein the Wall Street Journal – The Dark Side of ‘Webtribution’. She also listed my tips to help protect yourself online as well as wrote a fantastic column about what keystrokes can do to lives!
Click here to read her article dated 12/01/09.

Sue Scheff: Cyber stalking and Internet Defamation – Must See Documentary

GrahmBrownMartinFor everyone and anyone that is reading this, you use the Internet. I recently watch the most compelling and disturbing documentary. I almost feel like Oprah when I say – you have to watch this! I have never been so moved to anger, rage, and other emotions that we are now confronted with because of monsters that lurk online.

My recent book, Google Bomb, is the tip of the iceberg after watching this film. The victims, and now crusaders, in this film contacted me after hearing about my book and my own experiences.

Many people that have read my book say they have nightmares if they read it before going to bed. I never really understood that. Until I watched this documentary and lived it through other’s lives. My story is horrible, what I endured, however since I was so enmeshed in surviving on a daily basis, I didn’t realize how traumatic it was.

I know many of you have limited time. Watch this 50 minute film in segments if you have to, but watch it.

The title is “Stalkers” however I would prefer to use a phrase that was recently introduced to me – “criminals with a keyboard.”

This film shares two stories with you. One with Graham Brown-Martin (pictured above) and his lovely wife, Ren as well as their toddler daughter and the other with a man, Chay, who in one weak moment had a one night stand that takes obsession to a new level. If there was ever a “Fatal Attraction” through the Internet, we have found it. However, unlike the Hollywood movie, Chay literally only had a one night stand, no strings attached. He never heard again from her until months later, and it would be the worse next years of his life.

Are you ready to watch? http://www.digitalsafety.com/cyberstalking

Don’t miss a minute of it! Visit Digital Safety for more information.

Sue Scheff: Another Great Book Review for Google Bomb Book

Google_BombCoverGoogle Bomb Review – The Untold Story of the $11.3M Verdict

By Conversations with Moms

When I first started being active on the internet, I was very naive to the Internet World. I’ve learned a lot in the past year and thought that I truly understood the power of the internet. Until I read, “Google™ Bomb”.

Lets just say that I now feel as though I lived in a cave. I was totally unaware of the true power and damage that the internet can do. I don’t know where I was in 2006 to not have heard of the landmark internet case that won Sue Scheff $11.3 million for defamation of character. The only thing I can think of is that I wasn’t active online and didn’t really pay attention to what happened in the internet world.

When I was asked to review this book, I was curious as to find out what could have happened to Sue to make her have won such a large lawsuit. I had never heard of the term Google™ Bomb and thought it would be an informative read. I HAD NO IDEA JUST HOW MUCH I WOULD LEARN.

I was happy to provide this review if only to spread the word of how vicious the internet could be and in hopes of getting the word out that there are simple things you can do to protect yourself.

Read the entire review here: http://conversationswithmoms.com/2009/10/20/google-bomb-review-untold-story-113m-verdict/?sms_ss=twitter

Part 2 will be tomorrow.