When Stacey Turmel placed an order online with Davida, an English motorcycle accessory company, she was looking for protective gear with style and comfort.
But after plunking down $255 for a two-tone Deluxe Jet helmet, she found herself dragged into the shadowy world of global jihad.
Turmel, a St. Petersburg lawyer, has learned that she was among several Davida customers whose personal and credit information was placed on a public Web site – 3asfh.net. The site, hosted temporarily by a Tampa-based Web-hosting company, has been used to exchange information on hacking by people waging war in the name of Islam.
“It was scary to find out that jihadis had my personal information,” Turmel said.
Her loss was modest. After checking records in the spring of 2002, she found several small charges she did not make – none more than $40, but other victims discovered attempts to charge more than $1,000.
Investigators and Internet security experts say much more is at stake.
Computer hackers – from wayward teens to organized crime syndicates to groups associated with al-Qaida – steal hundreds of billions of dollars every year. Hack attacks such as the one against Turmel are a key weapon of global jihad, experts say.
Read it all.