Scams

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Ring, ring

Hello

This is XXXX from XXXX and ‘we have been trying to contact you as your internet is slow or about to be shut off ‘ or ‘we notice that you have a virus on your computer and we want to help you fix it’  and even better ‘your identity has been stolen and a law enforcement agency wants to talk to you’ and the ultimate: ‘there is an outstanding warrant for your arrest’ ….. and you must dial 1 to be connected to a scammer.

A good friend of mine recently responded by dialling 1 and spoke directly to the scammer. He was good and convinced my friend to hand over his credit card details, fortunately, no money was stolen as he realised what was going on and cancelled the card. I have sometimes played along when a person was calling (if I have nothing better to do and want some amusement) and kept them talking for as long as possible.  Others are not so fortunate.

The level of sophistication has reached new heights.

The viruses of today comes in many forms, some are germs, some are computer programs and some walk on two legs.

The problem is that scammers do not always phone or e-mail and it is getting more difficult to identify them. There is the corporate scammer that relies on their sheer size and market dominance to steal your hard-earned dollar, the government department that either puts up so many barriers or firewalls and steals your time by delays and repeat requests. The automatic annual fee increase (without added benefits) is the lowest-of-low scams. Monthly or annual fees to rent software (not allowing you to buy the software outright) leads to little or no improvements in the software program while allowing for cost increases and extra revenue.

Is advertising a form of Scamming? Does the expensive car get you to your destination differently to one less expensive? Looking at the adverts from the leading mobile phone companies, do you seriously believe that your mobile phone can capture professional quality images, especially when the lens and sensor wells are much smaller than that on a professional camera and the image is compressed into a jpg file, throwing away valuable colour information and then only viewed on the phone screen?

I will let you decide.