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 Article - Consequences of Advance Fee Frauds

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Ima Baeder
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 23, 2010 4:39 am Reply with quoteBack to top

http://www.helium.com/items/1960830-consequences-of-advanced-fee-frauds

Quote:
by Elizabeth M. Young
Imagine a convincing deal for a used car. It does sound good. In fact, it is too good to be true but emotions rule the day and the deal involves a convoluted set of problems that require depositing a check, sending some of the cash to a "shipping company" or "broker" and keeping the rest. The money is sent, but no car shows up, there was no "shipping company" at the given address and the bank is demanding that the money be replaced and that fees be paid because the "check" was no good.

There is little or no recourse. The scammers covered their tracks well, are overseas and cannot be located by overworked police departments at home or in the other country. No car, large amounts of lost money and lessons learned.

With the Nigerian 419 advanced fee scams, people have actually traveled there to get their money. One American was killed and a Czech victim shooting and killing a Nigerian embassy official. One student from China committed suicide after being the victim of a Nottingham Lottery Scam. This indicates that death is one of the potential consequences of getting involved in advanced fee frauds, especially when victims take the law into their own hands or suffer suicidal depression.

There is public or even private humiliation based on the childish simplicity of the written communications by scammers. The humiliating and "obvious" lesson is that no legitimate agency or individual would make spelling and grammar errors that are so obvious. Also, there has been so much publicity about lottery, African, private sales and other scams that the humiliation can be aggravated.

Others, including a Japanese businessman, a Swedish businessman, a British mayor and several Americans have been kidnapped, lured by con men.

The term "Nigerian" does not mean that Nigeria is always the source of the scam. There are now groups that operate in other countries and who use other methods to separate victims from their money.

While Nigerian scams dominate the web, there are lottery, auction, reselling and other scams that cost untold hundred of millions of dollars in money that cannot be restored.

The emotional consequences have driven some to suicide, depression and have triggered other mental and emotional disorders. There is loss of trust in others, grave feelings of guilt and shame and sometimes fears of making financial transactions, resulting in failure to pay even mortgage and utility bills or give to charities. In some cases, the victims become prey to even more scams as they try to dig themselves out of the first one. There are now attempts to scam previous Nigerian 419 victims by posing as investigators or official police, making the scams an ongoing series of scams.

In some cases victims believe that the scam to be too good to resist and can themselves become criminals when trying to raise funds. Even high level businessmen, government officials and professionals have engaged in theft, embezzlement, check kiting and other crimes, thinking that the "deal" would pay off quickly enough to restore the money before they could be discovered.

In summary, like any other fraud schemes, advanced fee frauds have lasting consequences that can be serious enough to cause mental and long term financial debilitation and even lead to killings, suicides and kidnappings. In other cases, greed can actually cause the victim to become a criminal in their own right. This is why there can never be enough publicity and warning about advanced fee fraud. The perpetrators are smart, relentless and can adapt very quickly to changing conditions.

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irishemigrant
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 23, 2010 4:46 am Reply with quoteBack to top

That reads like someone in here or SW wrote it.

If so, congratulations Very Happy

Nice find Ima

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 24, 2010 2:43 am Reply with quoteBack to top

In NO WAY am I being critical of anyone who's fallen for these scams.

I guess I personally have a hard time believing that anyone in their right mind would fall for something like that. For a while my thinking was that people can't be that stupid. But I've decided to shut off that train of thought. This is how I feel for all of this:

1. Educate the public about these scams, that anyone can fall for these.
2. Help the ones who have fallen for these scams in any way. They need support, not criticisim.
3. Keep baiting these assholes. They may never see any kind of criminal justice where they are doing this from. But if we do ANYTHING to make their lives and "business" more difficult, the better. And also the joy of making them angry for wasting their time and resources, it's just as enjoyable as helping out anyone who has been victimized.

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Ima Baeder
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 24, 2010 2:52 am Reply with quoteBack to top

I don't think we as baiters are even educated about all of the types of scams. There are many variations that we don't see baited very often because they don't show up in our catchers. The last bit of that article is accurate:

Quote:
The perpetrators are smart, relentless and can adapt very quickly to changing conditions.


If I wasn't active on ScamWarners, I'd never hope to keep up with the constant evolution. Victims of the scams teach us about the new twists that scammers use.

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doc holliday
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 24, 2010 11:34 am Reply with quoteBack to top

It isn't always stupidity.A couple years back,I was almost at the end of my rope financially.I knew damn well there was no way one of these scams could be true,but I got in the mindset that it couldn't hurt to respond and see what it was all about.I never did,and wound up doing this instead.But it can be an act of desperation as opposed to the stupidity and greed it is normally portrayed as.

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 24, 2010 4:34 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Quote:
lasting consequences that can be serious enough to cause mental and long term financial debilitation and even lead to killings, suicides
Glad I'm still here after all this time Laughing

And I'll be on their case until the last one is gone Twisted Evil

Nothing stupid about it, the right(or in this case the wrong) mindset and a fitting deal will catch anyone. Not only by email, but by phone, an advertisement, a car sale or that sexy woman in the bar that keeps smiling at you, it happens everywhere, to everyone.

Thanks Ima

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Amigwyn
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 24, 2010 5:05 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Sadly I believe there has been and will continue to be a rise in victims. These scammers are aware of the desperation of so many people due to the down-turn in the economy all over the world. Some people are just so desperate they are willing to take risks they would otherwise avoid.

Unfortunately I know someone that did and her only response was, "I knew it didn't feel right but I was so desperate to get my medication." She is on Medicaid and it doesn't cover her meds for a full year, she runs out of money mid-September ... and the scammer preyed on that. Which is why I have no sympathy for these ... people and know that everything they type is a lie. Evil or Very Mad

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Ima Baeder
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 24, 2010 5:44 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

I would never generalize or characterize victims as stupid, greedy, or many of the other ways that they are described. Victims share one characteristic: They have been the victim of a crime. Sometimes it is due to ignorance, sometimes it is due to desperation, sometimes they've simply been too trusting. The bottom line, however, is that they don't deserve to be judged. I don't see victims of other types of crimes being judged on the same level as internet scam victims.

No offense to anyone here but it's my experience that most people who characterize victims as greedy or stupid are underestimating scammers.
We think of the common 419Scams and wonder how someone could believe it. Those aren't the majority of scams that victim reports are about these days. Yes, some victims have been tricked by a scam that it's hard to imagine they've not heard of. Plenty of scams, however, take the guise of normal transactions and some scams can be sophisticated in their execution.

This is a victim's story just posted at ScamWarners: http://www.scamwarners.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=26&t=12107

She didn't lose money, but if you read through, you'll see how much damage the scammer caused, not just to her, but to other parties.

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 24, 2010 5:59 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Quote:
The humiliating and "obvious" lesson is that no legitimate agency or individual would make spelling and grammar errors that are so obvious.


The article is nice and aimed to English-speakers but I'd like to remind that there are millions of people like me whose mother tongue is not English and whose cultural background is something else than Anglo-American. I've seen scripts that have looked like any lad script in my eyes but they have actually been composed by a fellow baiter. I don't know, for example, which idioms are funny or what characters are known from western popular culture. I can't spot all spelling and grammar errors but that doesn't mean I'm a stupid person. Moreover, I've seen a real snail-mail letter from the General-Secretary of the UN addressed to my friend but I think there are even many baiters who don't know how a letter like that should look like. There are also people who don't know anyone who could warn them. They are beginners on the Net or just lonely. Some people have their profile on many dating sites and they are happy to get responses and may not realize where the responses are from. Etc. Etc.

So it's us who are stupid if we expect all victims to be stupid.

But sadly, there are also stupid people.

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Bart Fargo
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 25, 2010 12:23 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Looking at this, I am not meaning that these people are stupid, and I am sorry if I came across that way. I do think there should be a lot of education put out there to inform everyone of the scams. And I mean EVERYONE!! I am realizing that anybody can get scammed.

Sorry if how I sounded earlier was a bit negative, didn't mean to be that way!!

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 25, 2010 10:52 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Well, I can only speak from my personal experience. I consider meself an intelligent and educated man (and so do many other people).
I almost fall for a scam, 5 years ago. Even sent the scammer a scan of my passport.
In the end, my sincerity, lack of greed and lack of financial means saved me from becoming a victim. Common sense too; I had that "too good to be true" feeling.
At that time I was a poor exchange student, living from a scholarship in a foreign country.
The scammer was really good, story quite solid; unlike your usual mugu.

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