The ‘protection’ racket is back, but this time on the Internet

Cyberprotection racketeering and Cyberbullying are today’s fastest-growing cybercrimes. That is because, in the age of the ‘blog’, it is easy for anyone to publish anything about anybody quickly and damagingly.

If anyone publishes anything negative about you on the Internet, this is certainly likely to affect your business, career prospects and credibility. So vis a vis the posters, you are in a vulnerable position. That is because to get to the reputation-bashing perpetrators normally takes a lot of money, time and a court order as they tend to hide behind ‘message boards’ and say that the offending comments have been posted anonymously and at the same time manage to arrange unsolicited offers from ‘consultants’, to fix/ repair your online reputation for hard cash.

If you decide to go after the actual perpetrators and win, getting money out of them will certainly be an issue. But take heart, all is not hopeless…read on.

One way you can protect your reputation is to complain to your local law enforcement agency for internet crimes. For USA sites, the FBI would be your first port of call.  However, the perpetrators will need to be claiming that you are involved in criminal activity, or have committed a crime for you to get anywhere and you need to have hard evidence of the persons behind the campaign.

In the USA as well as in most jurisdictions, it is a criminal offence for anyone to publish something about someone who they claim have committed a crime, or are involved in criminal activity, when that is not the case. Basically, they are required to either ‘put up’, or ‘shut up’, or face the consequences.  Therefore, your law enforcement people may be able to assist you in getting the offending comments removed, or  by prosecuting the offenders who could go to jail, or face heavy fines.

However, as your cyberstalkers and cyberprotection criminals are likely to be and are normally sociopaths, psychopaths and/ or hardened bandits, they will usually stop at nothing to get to you. So despite your best efforts and that of the law enforcement agencies, expect their campaign to continue with anonymous postings on various ‘consumer protection’ blogs which will serve further the damage to your reputation.

However, the UK courts now provide the remedy of a ‘privacy’ injunction which will stop anyone publishing anything about you whether it is true or not upon pain of arrest and imprisonment.  As most jurisdictions will comply with a UK court order, the measure is a very powerful one for protecting your online reputation. However, the measure is not cheap and professional advice should be sought as to its efficacy  as far as you would be concerned.

Fraud Protection Sites & the Cyberprotection Racket

There are many fraud protection blogs on the Internet these days. The majority offer to provide a free screening service for anyone looking to check up on a potential business partner, employee, or service provider.

Many such sites, like RipOff Report, or Complaints Board, provide such a comprehensive reference source for checking up especially as they publish complaints from members of the public claiming to have been ‘ripped off’, or cheated by financiers, etc, and vice versa.  However, do be warned that these sites  do not verify any of the postings. So basically, at some flicks of anyone’s keyboard, you and your company could have their names instantly rubbished and there would not be much that you could do to defend yourself.

In particular, do beware of those fraud sites which are also linked to companies providing the same services as the financiers they seek to discredit as they are no more than hate sites aiming to narrow down the competition. In many cases they are linked to ‘cyberprotection’ racketeers who will certainly demand you to pay up for the ‘pain’ to stop.

One such site is: Quatloos, or Quatloosia which was founded by and is managed by Jay Adkisson and Chris Riser whose law firm, Riser Adkisson LLP runs an investments service. In fact, both partners are themselves involved in deceptive practices to run their business. A case in point is that they are putting out that Mr. Riser is a qualified UK solicitor so as to make their law practice more attractive it seems. However, Mr. Riser has never been so qualified.

Here is what the UK Solicitors Regulation Authority had to say when approached by our Fraud News Contributor:-

1)” …I can confirm that I have viewed the website link (http://www.risad.com)…..this has been forwarded to our Fraud Intelligence Unit and Regulatory Investigations….

Bev Hunter
Solicitors Regulation Authority
Phone : 0870 606 2555
Fax : + 44 (0) 207 320 5964
Email : contactcentre@sra.org.uk
Website : http://www.sra.org.uk

______________________________________

2)”..Thank you for your email of 02 March 2011.

I have checked the records held by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) for a Mr Christopher Michael Riser and can confirm that he has never held a practicing certificate.

I hope this information is helpful. If you have any further queries that you would like to discuss, please contact us by telephone on 0870 606 2555. Our lines are open 09.00 to 17.00 Monday to Friday. If you are calling from overseas please use +44 (0) 1527 504450. Please note calls may be monitored/recorded for training purposes. Alternatively you can e-mail us on contactcentre@sra.org.uk.

Thank you for contacting the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA).

Yours sincerely

Lucinda Jones
Contact Centre Officer
Solicitors Regulation Authority
(: 0870 606 2555
7: 0207 320 5964
*: contactcentre@sra.org.uk

Various other complaints about Mr. Adkisson and Mr. Riser can be found on ‘Rip-Off Report and  USA Complaints Board, as well as other consumer complaint sites mainly in the USA. The complaints cover matters like outright theft, malpractice and so on. The attorneys, who were exposed by Dr. Edward Lestrade as falsely holding out Mr. Riser to be qualified as a UK solicitor when he has never held a licence to practice, have since mounted a cyberbullying campaign against  Dr. Lestrade and the company, LLAGROUPEUROPE to which he is associated. Their postings of innuendos and typical unsubstantiated commentary have appeared on their site and various other consumer complaint blogs as posted by them. Both Dr. Lestrade and LLAGROUPEUROPE have reported the matter to the FBI.

Our Fraud News Contributor called the office of the attorneys last week to get an explanation for their bizarre behaviour towards the aggrieved parties but were met with an automated response.

In the meantime, the aggrieved parties have been inundated with approaches from reputation ‘repair’ management consultants who have been offering to perform ‘reputation repair’ services starting from a base fee of $5000. Is this the ‘protection’ racket all over again, but this time in ‘cyberspace’?

So the conclusion is that, if you are looking to check up on a business or individual, if that business, or individual does not show up on consumer complaint sites, that is not necessarily a good thing.  That is to say, should you be so inclined, at a few keystrokes, you too could easily and with considerable impunity rubbish their standing and reputations by a blog posting on a complaint site such as the one run by the attorneys Adkisson and Riser, or indeed any other such site.  The same could happen to you too!

For example, if you go to Complaints Board and search the names of these banks/ financial services and companies as well as individuals below, you will find that they will all have several complaints about them, some trivial, some serious. You may also try searching under your name, or that of you company, or an associate company (large, small, or well-known), you will be surprised what you will find!:-

Therefore, when ‘checking out’ people or businesses , you should certainly rely less on what is posted on these ‘complaint’ sites, but  more on the integrity of the person’s, or businesses’ actual presentation to you.

Help Line – if you are a victim of Cyberprotection, or Cyberbullying, please feel free to contact us at International Times of Dominica for assistance. We may not be able to help you directly, but will certainly know of people who can.

[Fraud News Contributor]

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