A Letter from Prison

My name is Gregory K. I am serving a 51-month prison sentence for aggravated identity theft, mail fraud, and accessing a protected computer without authorization to further fraud.

I used file-sharing software to steal people’s identities and buy merchandise under their names. For victimizing more than 50 people and causing about $70,000 in losses, I earned the nickname “highwayman in the virtual world.” I got caught, but there are more just like me who haven’t been caught. Lots more.

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What happens when a Network becomes a Not-Work?

Many of you may have read about the computer failure at the Federal Aviation Administration and the subsequent delays it caused for hundreds of flights throughout the US. There was never a safety issue, but the glitch raises important questions about the resiliency and reliability of any modern computer network. As it turns out, the FAA did have a backup system available, but that system quickly became overwhelmed and it wasn’t until later in the day that the system was able to manage flights properly. All of this begs the question “What is the point of having a backup system if it is unable to step in and save the day when called upon?”

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Four51 News: We are PCI Compliant

I think it’s safe to say that most of us have shopped online before–whether it’s that one dollar transaction to download an mp3 or bigger ticket items, like purchasing electronics– online ordering is as much a part of our culture as hamburgers and Tom Petty.

Since Four51 is an e-commerce company, I consider myself especially in tune with the way credit cards are processed over the web. Worrying about the security of my information is often the last thing on my mind when I proceed to checkout on popular sites such as Amazon or eBay, but what about smaller merchants? Are we more apprehensive to make purchases on sites that do not proudly display their security statement? I would argue yes.

That is why Four51 would like to take a minute to re-assure you that regardless of your role as a seller, supplier, or buyer exchanging payment card information on the Four51 network, ALL transactions across Four51 have been validated as secure by a third party auditor. In other words, Four51 is Payment Card Industry Compliant. You can see us listed on Visa’s site of PCI compliant merchants.

What this means for you is that when you’re buying on Four51, you’re buying on a secure platform. The $239 million dollars consumers lost in cyber fraud in 2007 is of no concern to you when entering your payment card information on our network.

What it could also mean if you’re a seller is that you have a new marketing tool to bring into the mix when prospecting. Odds are you’ve already had inquiries from your customers in the financial, healthcare and insurance industry about payment card security. Answer them with confidence and proudly state you run all your commerce through a PCI-certified merchant.

Being PCI compliant and providing a safe, secure e-commerce environment for our users and their customers wasn’t just a switch we flipped- it is an ongoing, arduous process, but giving our customers a secure place to do business is the most important thing we can do.


(Looking for more information? Check out the News page of the website.)