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Victims of Madoff targetted by scammers

To add insult to injury, victims of Ponzi scammer Bernard Madoff have been targeted by a new website, asking them for personal information in return for access to $1.3 billion in funds, allegedly recovered from a Madoff hideout in Malaysia.

The crooks took the look and feel of the SIPC (Securities Investor Protection Corp) website to add some legitimacy to the bogus site, which was described by authorities as a "classic phishing site".

Phishing is an oft-used scam on the internet, where unscrupulous coders build a website to mimic or appear to represent an official entity or agency. Oftentimes, these sites are used to gather personal information, like social security numbers, credit card numbers, or online banking usernames and passwords.

The site was removed from the web, after word began to spread about the scam. Keen observers spotted several grammatical and punctuation errors on the homepage, a common indicator of a phishing scam.

The site also used quotes from Madoff victims, lifted from the New York Times and other news organizations, in addition to phony testimonials from law firms and lawyers tracking Madoff-related losses.

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