Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
h a l f b a k e r y
Futility is persistent.

idea: add, search, annotate, link, view, overview, recent, by name, random

meta: news, help, about, links, report a problem

account: browse anonymously, or get an account and write.



Automatic scambaiting

Devise algorithms and bait scammers with them
  [vote for,

If every scammer were slowly inserted feet first into a blender operated by Alfred E Neuman and filled with bullet ants it would be too good for them. But the best we can do is waste their time. Scammers have devised automated scripts designed to separate the naive out for special attention. Why not do the same for the other side of the coin, and get even more sophisticated about it?

This program would respond to recognized elements in scammer scripts with questions designed to get the scammer off script. When an email is received that isn't in the archives of prepared scripts it would alert a human scambaiter. For example "Please fill in this form to get your million pounds" is obviously sent by a bot or at best copypasted. "I need you to fill out the form which Reverand Pickles sent you earlier" is probably something typed by a human.

As the algorithm gets better it may be possible to automate large parts of scambaiting, allowing one baiter (a master, if you will) to waste the time of a dozen scammers.
Voice, May 13 2021

Advance_20fee_20fraud_20(419)_20reply-bot [hippo, May 13 2021]

Jazz Emu: My Brothe https://www.youtube...watch?v=dmss2dJ__cI
An email funk opera. [zen_tom, May 13 2021]

Spying on scammers https://youtu.be/le71yVPh4uk
Jim Browning is a legend. [RayfordSteele, May 13 2021]

AI Powered Bot Makes Scammers Angry https://www.youtube...watch?v=Hx5R0Vnp6w4
[Voice, Mar 30 2022]


       I like it but if the AI became good enough to fool scammers then presumably it would also be good enough to disrupt many administrative jobs. In this case I think the best approach might be to define scammers as "terrorists" and send in the special forces to shut it down.   

       I stopped answering unknown numbers a long time ago, but my go-to if I get a telemarketing call is to explain that their service is not expensive enough. Quality isn't cheap, so if a business is offering something for "free" or cheap then it's obvious that the business doesn't care enough about me or about its own employees to offer me an expensive service.
sninctown, May 13 2021

       Interesting to note this could be said to be mankind's first battle with robots programmed to hurt us. They aren't self aware, conscious and determined to destroy all humans, but they are automated systems designed to hurt us.   

       I'm very into thinking about new ways to attack this problem. [+]
doctorremulac3, May 13 2021

       ^They are not all robots! I answered one that continue to call because I was in a mood. I tried messing around with the guy when he said,” which charge card do you want me to lower the interest on?” after he figured out I was just goofing on him he actually said,” suck my dick” in a very heavy accent! I was absolutely astounded! Take this bun and put it where the sun never shines on these people.+
xandram, May 13 2021

       I mentioned this before, my best comeback when a "human" caller, (using the term human loosely) told my computer had been hacked was to ask a bunch of dumb questions then say "Oh, are computers those things that look like TVs that you can send mail on and play games and such? Can you help me buy one of those?" The person paused for a second and said... "Uhh, yes." then waited patiently while I rambled on about how excited I was to finally get "One of them newfangled computy thangs".   

       I try to have fun with these asshole scumbags by wasting as much of their time as possible.
doctorremulac3, May 13 2021

       Watch Jim Browning sometime. He hacks into their scam center's video cameras and totally freaks them out.
RayfordSteele, May 13 2021

       //I try to have fun with these asshole scumbags by wasting as much of their time as possible.//   

       I think everyone should. It's kind of a population's immune system against scams.   

       I like the idea of making up my own (conceptual) operating system, full of little technical terms designed for maximum confusion.
Everyone could have their own - you'd need to start off by building a communal list of terms and phrases the scammers use, then everyone could go off and roll their own responses.
Loris, May 13 2021

       A funny story... my dad was in his late 80’s and having some memory loss. If one of the scammers happen to talk to him and ask for his insurance card he told him to hold on while he went to get it. The funny part is he forgot he was on the phone and never went back to it! I can imagine they would only wait for a while but he was certainly lucky he didn’t give them his insurance number.
xandram, May 13 2021

       I think I've suggested making a recording of an old person saying "Hold on, let me go get my credit card and social security number..." that's followed by half an hour or so of noises of somebody rustling through boxes, opening and closing drawers, cabinet doors creaking open and shutting all the while the person (in an over the top old person voice) saying "It's here someplace, is that it? No, that's the cat. Hold on, oh here it... no that's a fork. Ah ha my credit card. Wait, that's a baseball card." Then have them read a series of numbers that are presumably the card, "1, 8, 3, 5, 5, 9, 7.... wait, let me start again... 1, 9, 3, 7, oh I'm sorry, that's a 9 not a 7." etc etc etc. but try to keep them on the line with the occasional "You know I've got a ten thousand dollar limit on this card and all I've bought on it is some cat food so this should work."
doctorremulac3, May 13 2021

       <imagines 9>A slippery portal into a endless SIM module</9>   

       But wouldn't this make the scammers evolve therefore catching even more people out? Better to keep the scammers dumb so minimal viability is achieved.
wjt, Jun 11 2021

       Boy, the guy in the link is WAAAAYY overthinking this as witnessed by his having to step in and take over the ruse manually.   

       A simple recording of a faux victim would probably work just fine. The pauses and gaps that would result in a person talking to a recording could be explained by the elderly person character being confused and the language difference, but none of that would matter if the recording got right to the point and said "That sounds good, let me get my credit card." then proceeded to fumble around with it for as long as the scammer could be expected to wait as the character in the recording misread the numbers, accidentally read the back of their cat's medicine bottle, read the barcode from a Christmas card etc.   

       You could also have it play automatically by setting up your phone with a fake phone menu. "To speak with doctorremulac3, press 1 (which would go to the fake old person recording) to leave a message press 2, if you've reached this message in error, press 3 to be disconnected (which would actually connect the caller who's been previously told to press 3)
doctorremulac3, Mar 30 2022


back: main index

business  computer  culture  fashion  food  halfbakery  home  other  product  public  science  sport  vehicle