Computer Crime Research Center


Fraud: Computers involved

Date: November 28, 2005
By: Carolyn Salazar

Paramus detectives investigating a fraud involving money-laundering schemes had confiscated a computer they suspected held crucial evidence. But its hard drive apparently had been wiped clean.

At the time, many North Jersey police departments lacked the technical savvy and financial resources to investigate frauds involving computers. So the Paramus detectives did what many investigators facing similar stumbling blocks did: They headed to Upper Saddle River.

There, working in a cramped cubicle in the 18-member Police Department, was Andrew Donofrio, a young sergeant who had made computer forensics a part-time hobby.

Before long, Donofrio proved the laptop was used to spit out fraudulent store receipts, leading to theft convictions against several people. The U.S. Secret Service took up the case when the evidence showed it was also being used to counterfeit money.

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