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1 How to Improve Investigations in Online Classifieds Hosted by: Allen Atamer LTAS Technologies 1-647-892-6477 www.harmari.com.

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Presentation on theme: "1 How to Improve Investigations in Online Classifieds Hosted by: Allen Atamer LTAS Technologies 1-647-892-6477 www.harmari.com."— Presentation transcript:

1 1 How to Improve Investigations in Online Classifieds Hosted by: Allen Atamer LTAS Technologies

2 2 2 Allen Atamer MIT graduate 2001 (S.M.) MIT graduate 2001 (S.M.) 10 years experience in artificial intelligence, text mining and software engineering 10 years experience in artificial intelligence, text mining and software engineering 1 US and 1 Canadian patent in my name 1 US and 1 Canadian patent in my name 8 years in the aerospace industry 8 years in the aerospace industry Personal motivation: 2 daughters Personal motivation: 2 daughters

3 3 CraigsList & Online Classifieds Cheap, effective way to reach many people with your product/service Cheap, effective way to reach many people with your product/service Many postings to investigate – sometimes thousands per day Many postings to investigate – sometimes thousands per day Anonymous nature of listings, limited validation of personal information Anonymous nature of listings, limited validation of personal information CL hides behind the law when questioned* CL hides behind the law when questioned* * S230 of the Communications Decency Act 1996

4 4 Illegal Activity Auto crime / Auto fraud Auto crime / Auto fraud Child prostitution Child prostitution Unlicensed Contractors Unlicensed Contractors Weed / Drugs Weed / Drugs Fraud / 419 scam (King of Nigeria) Fraud / 419 scam (King of Nigeria) E-Fencing stolen merchandise E-Fencing stolen merchandise

5 5 Free Monitoring Tool - RSS CL provides RSS feeds free CL provides RSS feeds free Limited utility Limited utility lack of prioritization lack of prioritization Information overload for > 5 feeds Information overload for > 5 feeds

6 6 Database Webscrapers Cost about $50 - $500 off the shelf Cost about $50 - $500 off the shelf Crawl a single page to many destinations Crawl a single page to many destinations Limited utility Limited utility No clustering of similar postings No clustering of similar postings No clustering of phone numbers No clustering of phone numbers No cleanup / filtering / prioritization of data No cleanup / filtering / prioritization of data Page The quick brown fox the lazy dog Page

7 7 Hand-Bombing Tip Repeat ad that keeps coming up over and over? Repeat ad that keeps coming up over and over? Use the - prefix

8 8 Auto Crime - Reporter Curbstoners – sell salvage title / grey titling vehicles Curbstoners – sell salvage title / grey titling vehicles list bogus private sale ads in CL: “for sale by owner” list bogus private sale ads in CL: “for sale by owner” VW BEETLE TDI DIESEL VW JETTA GLS "NEEDS BODY WORK" Honda Accord, Auto, One owner, No accident, Private Sale EXAMPLE:

9 9 9 Auto Crime - Reporter Receive report compiling and separating list of sellers Receive report compiling and separating list of sellers Instantly identify high-profile sellers without searching Instantly identify high-profile sellers without searching Sample Excel file below: Sample Excel file below:

10 10 Auto: Investigator CL limits display of postings CL limits display of postings Only 7 days old for major cities Only 7 days old for major cities Typically 30 days old for smaller cities Typically 30 days old for smaller cities Additional matching against historic data up to 1 year old Additional matching against historic data up to 1 year old “TGTBT” price rank EX Acura for $9k, where average is $11k+ “TGTBT” price rank EX Acura for $9k, where average is $11k+ “TGTBT” mileage rank  odometer spinners (felony) “TGTBT” mileage rank  odometer spinners (felony)

11 11 Auto Example: 2005 honda accord CURBSTONERS TEND TO PUT THEIR PRICES ABOUT $ BELOW THE GOING PRICE … THE RESULT? TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE!

12 12 The “Game” Career Criminals adapt when they feel the heat Career Criminals adapt when they feel the heat Move their ads to another website Move their ads to another website Obfuscate phone number in ad Obfuscate phone number in ad Change cell numbers often Change cell numbers often We can meet the challenge We can meet the challenge Harmari can analyze all major classifieds Harmari can analyze all major classifieds Craigslist, AutoTrader, Kijiji, Backpage, (more coming)… Craigslist, AutoTrader, Kijiji, Backpage, (more coming)… Future development Future development You need a long-term internet investigation partner to be one step ahead

13 13 Automation benefits Text cleanup (spelling, decorations, acronyms, abbreviations, synonyms) Text cleanup (spelling, decorations, acronyms, abbreviations, synonyms) Automated License Plate Recognition (50-70% accy) Automated License Plate Recognition (50-70% accy) Duplicates filtered out (97% duplicate-free reports) Duplicates filtered out (97% duplicate-free reports) Merges info from similar listings Merges info from similar listings Posts/data are stored on our server for 3 months Posts/data are stored on our server for 3 months Reporting allows you to prioritize the leads Reporting allows you to prioritize the leads By region, number of posts, price, posted date By region, number of posts, price, posted date

14 14 Breakdown of postings

15 15 Find the phone number Obfuscated numbers foil the Reverse Lookup Search Harmari Engine is 98% accurate in retrieving such phone numbers

16 16 Spot the difference

17 17 The Competition Requirement Hand-bombing CL Harmari Effort required High Low – Excel compatible report EffectivenessLow High – prioritized list of suspects CoverageLimitedComplete Cost Your time $ next slide

18 18 Auto: Reporter Pricing Price per Month Level Posts/ Day ExampleCL CL, BkPg CL, BkPg, EbayCL Omaha,Louisville$350$650$ Cleveland,Detroit$650$1050$ NYC, LA $950$1400$1700 Prices are negotiable!

19 19 Product Line and Features ReporterInvestigator Available?TODAYTODAY Database updates bi-weeklyweekly postings stored offline  Analyze live data  Analyze historic data up to 3 months Price and mileage filter by make/model (Auto) 

20 20 NEW! CL Reverse Lookup Enter Phone Numbers Here Matching Live And Historic Ads Try it out for free! * Limited to Auto FSBO + Skilled Trades section

21 21 Avoid Hand-Bombing Each Ad; Saves Time Report Divided Up Amongst Investigative Team Excel Report Delivered Weekly 1. Receive Tip Or Complaint of Internet ad 2. Search the phone number on Harmari 3. Gather evidence against the Perpetrator -website -office location -false advertising Reactive Proactive

22 22 Show Excel File

23 23 Case Study - OMVIC Subscribed since August Subscribed since August Reports delivered monthly Reports delivered monthly TGTBT modifications TGTBT modifications Raw mileage number rather than ranking Raw mileage number rather than ranking Below Market Value (Yes/No) instead of 1-5 Below Market Value (Yes/No) instead of 1-5 Triage list Triage list Inappropriate dealer ads vs. true curbstoners Inappropriate dealer ads vs. true curbstoners CL ads Harmari Engine Dealers DB MarketingInvestigations

24 24 Case Study – Virginia HEAT Currently in evaluation phase Currently in evaluation phase Sample report for Tidewater, VA area Sample report for Tidewater, VA area Report for Craigslist with 243 phone numbers listed Report for Craigslist with 243 phone numbers listed Out of 28 phone numbers with 6+ vehicles, 7 were found to be unlicensed dealers Out of 28 phone numbers with 6+ vehicles, 7 were found to be unlicensed dealers Report can be “very useful to the Virginia State Police, local LE, DMV, MVDB and other State Agencies for investigating curbstoning, vehicle crime and fraud, unlicensed contractors, fencing merchandise, prostitution, etc.” Report can be “very useful to the Virginia State Police, local LE, DMV, MVDB and other State Agencies for investigating curbstoning, vehicle crime and fraud, unlicensed contractors, fencing merchandise, prostitution, etc.”

25 25 Future Development Image Analysis – Stolen / Altered / Geo-tag ( see Blog on website) Image Analysis – Stolen / Altered / Geo-tag ( see Blog on website) Tipline / Complaints DB Integration Tipline / Complaints DB Integration / Voice Agents / Voice Agents Auto Flagging Ads for Removal Auto Flagging Ads for Removal

26 26 Next Steps Free quote specific to your needs Free quote specific to your needs Free sample data for your review Free sample data for your review LTAS Technologies


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