Cyberstalking, Pretexting: Doesn't Judd Bagley Have Anything Better to Do?
As busy, and amoral, as a bee
Overstock.com's nauseating house stalker, Judd Bagley, has been busy lately.
Not at Overstock.com, where the OMuse "Wikipedia wanna-be" that he was supposedly hired to run has languished --two new articles were commenced so far this year, and both consist of about five words each so far. It still remains in "beta" one year after being launched.
No, instead he's been working hard, doing what he is paid to do, which is to harass and stalk people on Internet message boards and Wikipedia.
He posted messages like this on a Yahoo message board that sent users to Overstock's stalker website, antisocialmedia.net, and then bounced them back to Yahoo, where a script was initiated to put on "ignore" messages posted by fraud-fighter Sam Antar and another Overstock critic. Here's a post from Internet sleuth Scipio Africanus explaining how it was done.
Lastly, Bagley engaged in a bit of crude pretexting, sending a forged Wikipedia page to a Wiki administrator from the email address garyweiss.mail at gmail.com. (I originally said "probably Bagley" but the genius later boasted on an anti-Wikipedia website (below) that the pretexting and forged email was his.)
My email address is garyweiss.email at gmail.com. The aim was to demonstrate that a Wiki user he doesn't like, "Samiharris," is me. To gild the lily, a spyware script was added to the email.
"email@example.com" has never been my email address, and I did not send that email.
Bagley fed a similar forged email to a reporter for a British Internet tabloid who was working on an anti-Wikipedia hatchet job. British libel laws being as they are, the tabloid did not mention the forged email.
Bagley's skirting close to, if not exceeding, a violation the law with his crude pretexting gambit. I guess it would depend on how teed off the prosecutors would be, if they decide to go after him for his latest sliminess. Since he's clearly engaged in this activity on behalf of Overstock, thereby doing it for gain, I'd imagine what he's doing is more likely than not to be illegal.
What's he done is actually worse than what happened at Hewlett-Packard, since what he's doing here is not to gather information, but to plant disinformation.
But since when has the law ever stopped Judd Bagley from serving his masters at Overstock?
It's certainly not ethical, but then again the word "ethics" has been ripped out of the dictionary at Overstock.
Aside from the usual, nutty, self-destructive obsession with sabotaging message boards and Wikipedia -- which loom large in the fevered brain of Overstock CEO Patrick Byrne -- the aim, of course, is to divert attention from Overstock's stinky finances and its plummeting share price.
The Street consensus is a small profit in the fourth quarter, the first in memory -- though with Overstock's accounting being so shady it's hard to say if a "profit" would really be a profit. My question is: does Bagley crawling out from under a rock mean it will be worse than expected?
© 2007 Gary Weiss. All rights reserved.