Scam artists try getting credit card numbers after airline's crash

Posted: Friday, February 04, 2000

ANCHORAGE - Some cold-hearted scam artists set up a Web Site after Monday's Alaska Airlines crash off California, trying to get the credit card numbers of people interested in donating to a fund for families of the 88 victims.

Brian Petro, a spokesman for the Seattle-based airline, said a company technician working at home Tuesday night spotted the site. It used the Alaska Airlines logo and was close to being an exact match for the airline's real Internet home page, Petro said.

The page was hosted by freehomepages.com, which removed the site Wednesday at the airline's request, Petro said.

The Web site instructed people to click on a form. When they did, the site linked permanently to the clicker's computer. It then could monitor future computer purchases made on that computer, including credit card numbers.

``It infected your computer. . . . Then they're just sitting there waiting for you to buy a book from Amazon,'' Petro told the Anchorage Daily News.

Petro said no one has called the airline to report being victimized.

``We think we got it really fast,'' he said. ``I don't understand how someone could do this.''

The correct address for the Alaska Airlines web site is www.alaskaair.com.



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