[funsec] The end of Phishing in sight?

Pierre Vandevenne pierre at datarescue.com
Wed Oct 19 13:38:22 CDT 2005

Good Day,

DNK> Do any European countries (or anywhere else besides the USA) have a
DNK> concept similar to an EIN?

Well, in Belgium, we have an employer identification number, linked to
the social security we pay for the people we employ. That number isn't
used for any other purposes in practice (well, when you sign
governmental contracts, you have to prove you don't owe them anything
and you use that number).

But except for very small businesses in some countries, the VAT number
is supposed to be the "universal" number and will even become more so
on the future.

All the other transactions are carried out with the National ID card
(or eventually a passport). Unless I go to a branch where I am
physically known, I'll need my ID card to withdraw money, or even
deposit (not even cash) a check. As I said earlier, this essentially
only happens when we receive foreign checks since we don't use checks
internally that much anymore (we do use guaranteed/certified, bank
prepared checks to buy houses or cars though). When a foreign check is
cashed, the bank will automatically state a warning "funds unavailable
for 6 days" although they may credit you at once for interest purposes
if you are a good customer. That prevents the typical fraud where you
deposit a check and wire back some money before the check clears.
To cash out in a branch that doesn't know me, I'll need my National ID
card again, and possibly a notarized copy of my company's founding
papers if the operation seems unusual.

The situation is roughly identical in the other EU countries I have
dealt with banks, except that the French are a bit more outdated in
some aspects (checks/traites) and were a bit ahead in others (credit
cards "chipped" and pin code protected in the early 90s).

Actually, one thing I have always wondered is how they do it in UK,
without National ID Cards - anyone willing to shed some light about
that? DrSolly maybe?

Best regards,
 Pierre                            mailto:pierre at datarescue.com

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