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01/24/2005 Archived Entry: "Burglars take note, ID thiefs as well"

Burglars take note! The San Francisco Chronicle reports on new job opportunities, "Burdened by thousands of false alarms, police in Fremont will become the first in California to stop responding to burglar alarms unless there is a confirmed break-in or security breach, officials said Thursday. The new policy, effective Feb. 18, will allow police in the Bay Area's fourth-largest city to handle more urgent calls and save the city about $600,000 a year in staff time and equipment costs, Fremont Police Chief Craig Steckler said. 'I'm going to get out of the alarm business,' Steckler said. 'I was never asked permission to get into it.' Under the policy, police won't respond to burglar alarms unless a resident, property owner or alarm company employee can show evidence that a crime occurred, such as glass breakage or seeing a suspicious person. Officers, however, will still respond to panic, duress and robbery alarms."

Nor does the SF Chronicle neglect those who prefer to make a living through identity theft...

The Chronicle advises, "As part of a nationwide ad campaign, satellite TV provider Dish Network asks, 'Why is digital cable so expensive?' And that's a perfectly valid question. But potential customers may want to ask a question of their own: Why does Dish insist that people hand over their Social Security number? The fine print of the company's ads (one of which was in these pages the other day) says a $49.99 fee will be charged for service but that a $49.99 credit will be given on your first bill, making activation free. Then comes this: 'Requires Social Security number.' A credit card number (also required) is understandable. But in this age of rampant identity theft, a Social Security number is something else entirely."

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