Bob Sullivan (journalist)

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Bob Sullivan
Born Woodbridge, New Jersey
Nationality American
Alma mater Fairfield University
Missouri School of Journalism
Subject Consumer advocate
Notable works Stop Getting Ripped Off
Gotcha Capitalism
Red Tape Chronicles

Bob Sullivan (born 1968[1] in Wood-Ridge, New Jersey[2]) is an award winning American online journalist, author and one of the founding members of Sullivan is the author of two New York Times Best Sellers entitled Stop Getting Ripped Off and Gotcha Capitalism.[3] Sullivan is an independent journalist at and an author. Formerly, he was senior writer, technology correspondent and author of the popular blog, The Red Tape Chronicles, at, where he focused on technology crime and consumer fraud. He also regularly appears on air on MSNBC, CNBC's On the Money, NBC Nightly News, the Today show, and various local NBC affiliates.[4]


Sullivan received his B.A. in history and mathematics from Fairfield University[2] in 1990,[5] where he was class valedictorian.[citation needed] He received an M.A. in Journalism from the Missouri School of Journalism[2] in 1996.[6]


Sullivan has been reporting on computer crime, electronic financial fraud, privacy, and the Internet Underground and has written more than 100 articles on the subjects since 1996.

Sullivan was the first to report to Americans that the FBI had developed a computer program, called Magic Lantern, designed to obtain public encryption keys on November 20, 2001.[7] He was also the first to describe the data theft at ChoicePoint, the first of what would become an avalanche of stories about stolen and lost personal information on February 18, 2005.[8]

Sullivan is the recipient of several journalism awards. In 2002, Sullivan won the prestigious Society of Professional Journalists Public Service Award for his series of articles on online fraud. In 2003, he received the Carnegie Mellon University CyLab CyberSecurity Journalism Award for his online cybersecurity reporting.[9] More recently, in 2016, Sullivan accepted the Betty Furness Consumer Media Service Award from the Consumer Federation of America in recognition of his two decades writing and speaking "critically about anti-consumer practices both through major news outlets and a series of books."[10][11]


  • Bob Sullivan and Herbert Hugh Thompson. Getting Unstuck: Break Free of the Plateau Effect. Penguin, 2014. (ISBN 0698183819)
  • Bob Sullivan and Herbert Hugh Thompson. The Plateau Effect: Getting from Stuck to Success. Penguin, 2013. (ISBN 1101624248)
  • Bob Sullivan. Stop Getting Ripped Off: Why Consumers Get Screwed, and How You Can Always Get a Fair Deal. Ballantine Books, 2009. (ISBN 978-0-345-51159-1)
  • Bob Sullivan. Gotcha Capitalism: How Hidden Fees Rip You Off Every Day-and What You Can Do About It. Ballantine Books, 2007. (ISBN 978-0-345-49613-3)
  • Bob Sullivan. Your Evil Twin: Behind the Identity Theft Epidemic. John Wiley & Sons, 2004. (ISBN 978-0-471-64810-9)


  1. ^ "Sullivan, Bob 1968-". WorldCat. Retrieved June 21, 2011. 
  2. ^ a b c MacDonald, Jay (April 21, 2008). "Spotlight: Bob Sullivan". Retrieved June 21, 2011. 
  3. ^ "The New York Times Best Sellers: Paperback Advice". New York Times. January 27, 2008. Retrieved March 19, 2009. 
  4. ^ "Bob Sullivan, Technology correspondent". MSNBC. Retrieved December 21, 2008. 
  5. ^ Riccio, Nina M. (Spring 2005). "Bob Sullivan’s foray into crime" (PDF). Fairfield Now. Fairfield University. Archived from the original (PDF) on November 24, 2010. Retrieved June 21, 2011. 
  6. ^ "Alumni News". Missouri School of Journalism. October 2004. Archived from the original on September 27, 2011. Retrieved June 21, 2011. 
  7. ^ Sullivan, Bob (November 20, 2001). "FBI software cracks encryption wall". Retrieved December 21, 2008. 
  8. ^ Sullivan, Bob (February 18, 2005). "Data theft affects 145,000 nationwide". Retrieved December 21, 2008. 
  9. ^ Swaney, Chris (October 29, 2003). "Carnegie Mellon's Prestigious Cybersecurity Reporting Awards Go To ABC News, ABC Nightline, and The Washington Post". Carnegie Mellon. Retrieved December 21, 2008. 
  10. ^ "Consumer Federation of America: Forty-Sixth Annual Awards Dinner" (PDF). Consumer Federation of America. Retrieved July 8, 2016. 
  11. ^ "CFA speech movie". Bob Sullivan. YouTube. Retrieved July 8, 2016. 

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