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Wash. man accused of stealing IDs

SEATTLE, April 7 (UPI) -- Federal officials say a Washington state man used file sharing software to steal personal information from other computer users.

The Seattle Post-Intelligencer reported Tuesday that Frederick Eugene Wood of Seattle is accused of targeting parents whose children downloaded file-sharing software and inadvertently opened their computers to anyone on the Internet.

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He is accused of wire fraud, aggravated identity theft and computer crimes for allegedly getting personal financial information on 120 people around the country.

The newspaper noted that Wood is believed to have been involved with Gregory Kopiloff, a Seattle man

sentenced last year to four years in prison after pleading guilty to charges in a similar scheme.

Investigators say that Wood taught Kopiloff how to use the Limewire file-sharing program to steal credit card information from other users, the newspaper said.

Jay Foley, executive director and co-founder of the Identity Theft Resource Center, said that, in his view, Limewire and similar programs are inherently insecure.

"Most peer-to-peer networks don't have any real level of security involved," Foley said. "They're just computers sharing files with each other."

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