No one can dispute that Lifelock, the identity theft protection company offering a million dollar guarantee, is pretty aggressive in their marketing tactics. They pay everyone from bloggers to the likes of Howard Stern, Rush Limbaugh and Fred Thompson to promote their products.

It now appears that marketing isn’t the only thing they are aggressive at.

Recently, as a result of a New Times article, their founder Robert Maynard stepped down from his position after it was suggested that his stories of being an identity theft victim weren’t exactly one-hundred percent accurate. Even more damaging was an allegation that Maynard used his father’s identity to secure a American Express card that went bad.

The identity theft story had been often heralded as one of the reasons behind the Lifelock business concept.

Even though Maynard stepped down, it appears he is still making money from Lifelock and hawking it’s products. At the time of this announcement — a rumor came out that Todd Davis, Lifelock’s CEO, who plasters his social security number all over the Internet to show his confidence in Lifelock — was himself a victim of identity theft.

It has now come to light that Mr. Davis wasn’t happy with the Texas authorities sense of urgency on his personal matter and took it upon himself to send a film crew and Lifelock representative (private-eye) to his evil twin’s house to get him to sign a prewritten confession.

Apparently, the suspect was told to either sign the prewritten confession and agree to community service, or the Police would be out to arrest him. None of the articles, I read indicated, whether or not, the suspect had any part in preparing the prewritten confession.

In defense of the authorities concerned, there is a lot of identity theft to investigate. It turns out they were waiting for additional evidence to tie the suspect into the use of Davis’ identity. The evidence they were waiting for was records from ATT to verify the suspects Internet Protocol address, which they had already subpoenaed.

Although, not specifically stated, this leads me to believe that the theft using Mr. Davis’ identity was originated, where a lot of this type of theft starts, on the Internet.

It also appears that the authorities had advised Davis to let them do their job, and he decided to do otherwise.

The person involved doesn’t appear to be a very sophisticated identity thief. He is described by the Fort Worth authorities as “mentally disabled.”

All I have to say is that it doesn’t help Davis’ marketing efforts when a mentally disabled person is able to commit identity theft, using the social security number, he put up all over the Internet. Of course, the suspect in this case can’t be considered very bright, either. Apparently, he got the social security number right off Lifelock’s website, where Davis is basically daring someone to steal it.

I have to wonder if he wanted to get caught?

It doesn’t seem reasonable when a film crew and private investigator use “pretty questionable” tactics (my opinion) to resolve the crime. Of course, this isn’t only my opinion because the authorities in question have now dropped the case because of the sloppy investigative tactics referred to as “coercion.”

To put this in perspective, this suspect, who is described as mentally disabled, stole $500.00, using Davis’ identity, which is plastered on the Internet for all to see. According to the original New Age article — Maynard, who was, or maybe still is his business partner — allegedly ran up a $170,000 tab, using his father’s identity.

We don’t see Lifelock dispatching private eyes and a film crew to bring resolution to this case.

There was speculation when the original post came out on Lifelock someone was orchestrating a hit job on them. I don’t know — whether or not, this is true — but the fact remains a lot of what has come out about them seems to leave them wide open for attack.

After all in a world, where our personal identities seem to be abused on a regular basis, the concept of trust is going to weigh in on how we perceive those, who are profiting by selling this information, or the new industry (maybe a necessary evil) of protecting it.

When reading about this post, I came upon a rather amusing summary of the Lifelock saga, written by Robert Cringley at InfoWorld entitled:

Dumb, dumber, and Davis

On a closing note, I am an advocate of pursuing identity thieves to the fullest extent of the law. However, we must always realize that in our zeal to do so, people have rights, which must be protected, also.

There has been recent evidence of innocent people being charged with crimes because their identity was stolen. This makes it even more important to ensure that the person being charged, is in fact, the person, who committed the crime.

In this instance, it appears they did find the guilty party, but I am glad to see that the Fort Worth Police Department appeared to be taking the necessary steps to present a well investigated case to their District Attorney’s office.

Here is a post, I did about the wrong people being charged with a crime because their identities were stolen.

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