POSTED: Thursday, November 13, 2008 - 11:44am
UPDATED: Wednesday, February 17, 2010 - 2:22pm
We are learning more about just how easy it really is for law enforcement to track your activity on the net. In this case, the person who sent the messages to Mayor Cook and Representative Holguin.
Newschannel 9 showed local computer expert Enrique Gomez the "contact us" section on the City of El Paso's website. In the comment box, anyone can send city leaders feedback. In this case, death threats.
Gomez says whoever sent the death threat to the mayor, should be worried because you leave a cyber footprint every time you visit a website.
"When you fill out this form, all your info belonging to your computer is attached with the message." says Gomez.
Included in that info is what is called your IP address, or internet protocol address. It is a series of numbers specific to your computer. You can think of you IP address as your social security number of the internet. It is recorded on the server of every website you visit and in turn it can be traced right back to you.
"It is really simple. It takes about 5 minutes to get that information" says Gomez.
Gomez says all law enforcement has to do is contact your internet service provider.. such as AOL. The IP address can then be traced back to your user account.
That is how Gomez says your true online identity is exposed. It is also why he believes law enforcement is hot on the trail of whoever sent the threatening messages to Mayor Cook and Representative Holguin.