Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Angry Identity

Brian
Have you been the victim of identity theft? I ask only because federal law mandates that every news story that mentions the subject begins with those precise words. I'd prefer they be punctuated with an interrobang, the official punctuation mark of SuedO Apmuza. Interrobang?! Nevertheless, identity theft is often mischaracterized in such reports, Brian Bergstein contends:
[L]awmakers and companies might be misdirecting their anti-fraud energies. Overly fearful consumers could be unecessarily avoiding doing business on the Web.

Too often overlooked, many analysts argue, are savvy "synthetic'' fraud schemes that frequently don't directly victimize individual consumers. In such schemes, criminals invent fictitious identities and use them to ring up phony charges. By some estimates, this accounts for three-quarters of the money stolen by identity crooks.

Link (submitted by Mars). News of identity theft might bring up all sorts of negative feelings, but remember, it's always best to respond with blinding rage:
Anger is good for you, as long as you keep it below a boil, according to new psychology research based on face reading.

People who respond to stressful situations with short-term anger or indignation have a sense of control and optimism that lacks in those who respond with fear.

"These are the most exciting data I've ever collected," Carnegie Mellon psychologist Jennifer Lerner told a gathering of science writers here last month.

Link (also submitted by Mars). Lerner then toppled the podium before running out of the room cursing and pounding her fists.



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Image credits: Fear-Love "Lifeline" Shirt, available at Groovy Movie Stuff, borrowed for news-reporting and comment purposes.

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