Tech Lessons From Organized Crime And The Red Light District

from the just-what-the-world-needed dept

Chris Lindquist writes "Organized crime, porn peddlers, gambling sites--they all use technology to make a killing. CIO.com has posted a collection of stories that spell out how these shady-side businesses uses IT for profit. Sadly, they seem to be far better at it than most companies: They're more agile, approach their operations with clear goals, apply appropriate technology for specific purposes, and they don't throw good money after bad. From the online techniques of penny stock scammers to innovation lessons from a pair of "accidental pornographers," to what you can do to fend off cybercriminals, the stories examine what the seedy side does right when it's doing wrong."

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  • identicon
    charlie potatoes, 12 Jun 2007 @ 1:11pm

    organized crime

    Once again.. there is NO organized crime. Criminals only SEEM organized when compared to the police and FBI.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      itanshi, 12 Jun 2007 @ 1:24pm

      Re: organized crime

      Hmm, they organized as in they are an organization as opposed to entrepreneurship which might be just a thief.

      Back on topic, good idea checking these sources. Much to be learned for better or worse.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Unknowledgeable Geek, 12 Jun 2007 @ 1:12pm

    counldn't agree more....

    That is a great line

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Bah who needs one, 12 Jun 2007 @ 1:13pm

    There's a simple explanation for this. Illicit businesses, and businesses that while legal get little sympathy particularly from a Republican government (e.g. pornography businesses), can't just sulk, bawl, and go crying to Uncle Sam as soon as the CFO says "Third quarter earnings are looking to come in well below target", and get a pat on the head, a lollipop, and some government handout, an injunction against a competitor on some bogus intellectual property claim, or suchlike.

    Instead, they actually have to compete, without leaning on any government-supplied crutches, and in the case of outright illegal businesses, they even have to elude government in addition to their competition. Which makes the successful ones the agile and smart ones.

    Unlike in traditional business, where the successful ones are the ones that have the sharpest lawyers, a steady track record of hefty campaign contributions and thus a few legislators in their hip pocket, and a few board members that are golfing buddies of golfing buddies of men close to the President.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    TiredofLame, 12 Jun 2007 @ 3:11pm

    This is a garbage thesis

    These illicit businesses are not supercompetitive uber dogs- they simply

    1. Pay no tax burden
    2. Shift all their burden costs to the general society
    3. Have very little accountability
    4. What makes you think their profit numbers or transparency self reporting about their operations is real
    5. Crime underestimates the true cost of doing business which includes jail, getting waxed, etc
    6. No compliance costs of any governmental forms
    7. Very little managment meeting time agonizing about ethical delemas
    8. Some things are just evil- child porn, scamming old folks out of their money
    9. Why would anyone trust an online offshore gambline site- wouldn't they just scam you and give you less money if you actually won?

    I could go on...
    6.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      TiredofTiredofLame, 12 Jun 2007 @ 3:30pm

      Re: This is a garbage thesis

      Funny. A lot of those same things could be said about a lot of large supposedly "legitimate" corporations.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 12 Jun 2007 @ 4:13pm

      Re: This is a garbage thesis

      As far as the online porn business, which I have a bit of experience in:

      1. Pay no tax burden.

      Yes they do, since they are legitimate, legal companies, and that includes such niceties as sending 1099's, and keeping records demanded by the "2257" laws that relate to the age of models.

      2. Shift all their burden costs to the general society

      see my answer to #1

      3. Have very little accountability

      Same as any other business - even more so because of government's desire to look tough on porn.

      4. What makes you think their profit numbers or transparency self reporting about their operations is real

      What makes you thnk they are not real? All their business is done with credit cards and the like - very hard to hide that kind of income.

      5. Crime underestimates the true cost of doing business which includes jail, getting waxed, etc

      Anyone who breaks the law should go to jail. Few in porn break the law; but the ones that do so get a lot of publicity. Oh by the way, politics has similar risks. Just ask Scooter Libby and the rest. I never heard of anyone in the industry getting murdered. Waxed? That's something different.

      6. No compliance costs of any governmental forms

      The adult industry has the same requirements as any other business - plus "2257" laws. You plainly have no knowledge of the subject.

      7. Very little managment meeting time agonizing about ethical delemas

      Ethical dilemmas (the correct spelling btw) are not difficult for ethical people. It's the unethical ones who find them hard.

      8. Some things are just evil- child porn, scamming old folks out of their money

      True, and the porn industry - as an industry - fights against child pornographers for 3 reasons:
      1 - it's evil
      2 - they have families also
      3 - it's bad for the industry)
      They participate in Family Online Safety Institite (http://www.fosi.org/icra/) and RSACi rating system, and other organizations. As far as scamming old folks - that's not the adult industry.

      9. Why would anyone trust an online offshore gambline site- wouldn't they just scam you and give you less money if you actually won?

      No - because it's bad for business and they are in it for the long term. Just like Las Vegas, Atlantic City, and the other brick and mortar casinos.

      Those are the facts.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    |333173|3|_||3, 12 Jun 2007 @ 6:11pm

    Shady offshore casinos

    Of course some offshore casino run by the local mob in some third-world shitholw is going to scam you somehow. The only question is how, and how much. The most effective way is to stac the table with AIs, which them=n mean that not only is the game stacked in favour of the dealer (as real casino games are), but also if the AIs win, then you atill loose your money. Sincethe AIs can know the cards you are holding, then they know when they are going to win,a dn when you are bluffing, so they have an advantage.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    TiredofLame, 13 Jun 2007 @ 9:17am

    OK -got it

    OK- let me be sure I have things straight:

    1. The red light and online gambling industries occupy the business and moral highground and regular US corporations are the most evil force in the world
    2. Offshore casinos are transparent and would never consider cheating you because it would be bad for business (I then assume you would think that Chinese pet food supplies would never put poison in pet food because that would be bad for business)

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Those are the facts., 14 Jun 2007 @ 3:51pm

    Moral highground? I never mentioned morals or high falutin ideals. All I said was that the online adult industry has to obey the same laws as everyone else in their country - which ever one it is.

    I never said that they all were honest or that all "mainstream" businesses are crooked.

    Companies that want to stay in business, treat their cutomers fairly. That's a simple concept, isn't it?

    I wouuldn't do business in certain countries, online or not. In other countries I would have little to fear.

    I suggest that anyone who doesn't have confidence in an online business of any sort, should simply restrain himself/herself from doing business with it. Another simple concept.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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