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Robocalls are a plague. Here's a proposed possible
You pick up the spam call and hear: "Congratulations..."
which point you push your "Robo Chatbot" button that
voice recognition to simulate a person on the line who is
not only accepting the sales call, but is really
hand over any information the salesperson/scammer
wants. Credit card numbers, social security number,
account info. It's sounds like a scammers dream, but it's
nightmare because obviously all the numbers are fake.
Once a human gets on the line, and because the app
indicating their excitement about winning a free trip to
Bermuda, a reasonably believable chat bot keeps the
person on the line for as long as possible. It does so by
saying things like: "That sounds very good, I'm very
interested. Can you wait while I get my credit card? Oh
wait, that's my Medicare card. Where did I put that? Oh,
here it is... no, that's my cat... hold on."
I've done a real person version of this a couple of times
acting really excited about them helping my to fix my
computer that had been hacked until I asked what a
computer was. I said "Are those those new TV looking
things that makes pictures and you can do talking mail
I've always wanted one, can you sell one to me?" The
scammer paused and said "Uhh, yes." then I kept them
the line as long as possible looking for my credit card
number to give them until they caught on and hung up.
Point is, I wasted a pretty good 2 minutes of their time
which is how this would work.
So the idea would be to have effective enough voice
recognition to make the caller think they had a sucker,
the fact that the AI chatbot might sound a bit confused
and react improperly might just make them look like an
easier mark. Lots of time would be spend looking for
card numbers, including reading fake numbers over and
over, apologizing because their glasses are old, telling
them to hold on while they found their newer glasses
The voice would be yours so they wouldn't be able to use
voice recognition to just hang up. When you programmed
the app, you'd read a series of words, statements etc
would be used to carry on the virtual conversation with
scammer. You'd be encouraged to ham it up, stutter, slur
your words, make up your own versions of the script etc.
The more original you made it, the harder it would be
them to figure it out.
This would be a way to actively fight back against
scamming time wasters by wasting their time as much as
Lenny the chatbot
Baked and hilarious [Voice, Mar 11 2021]
Lenny Chatbot - Google video search
[Skewed, Mar 12 2021]
@Kitboga on YouTube
Kitboga on YouTube is very entertaining. [zen_tom, Mar 17 2021]
Jim Browning on YouTube
Jim Browning is the King of Scam botherers, not only does he waste their time, he reverses the hacking attempts and performs long-term surveillance on them, revealing their details and shopping them to the authorities. [zen_tom, Mar 17 2021]
RoboKiller not only blocks spam calls but also attempts to mess with the spammers. The app's Answer Bots can automatically answer spam calls with prerecorded nonsense designed to frustrate them and waste their time. [a1, Jul 23 2021]
||Many tele-market callers use a "play-book" for how to
respond to your questions & comments. The best trick is
to reply with something that *sounds* sensible, but is
*not* in their play-book, so they get confused.
A woman called me trying to sell insurance or something.
The usual blah blah, I told her I was busy, then she asked
when would be a good time to call me back when I had
more time. I replied "you should have called me
yesterday, I had lots of spare time then". This completely
||That's what kind of makes the battle against these
guys interesting. There's intrigue, there's
subterfuge, there's trying to outsmart the enemy.
Not quite cold war spy vs spy stuff but the rules
are basically the same.
||A much easier way to do this would just be to
create an entire art form of subterfuges like what
you said about calling earlier or what I said about
being ignorant of what a computer was but willing
to turn over my credit card number to get one.
||Since these things are a fact of like, creating a
whole outline of how to handle them in such a way
as to reduce the value of these annoying calls
might be effective and kind of fun and creative at
the same time.
||Maybe just a website called "Robo Caller Mauler" or
something with various scripts to read when you've
"...been selected to win a hundred dollar gift
||//This would be a way to actively fight back against
scamming time wasters//
||Add automated 1471 call
tracing (or your regional
equivalent) at the end of the call with automatic online
& delivery to the calls originating address of a nice
set to detonate on arrival &
can have my bun.
||You could use Amazon delivery drones.
||// I wasted a pretty good 2 minutes of their time
||I get a lot of calls about problems with my internet.
Sometimes, I play along for a bit, playing dumb and not
typing in what they
want, and then switch mode and start asking about their
job, and how valuable a service they think it is,
progressively working around to asking them why they're
trying to scam people, and if they're ashamed of
themselves. Eventually they get upset and hang up.
||A form of this has been around for decades
||You used to find phone numbers for prank recordings in the
adds in the papers as far back as the 80's at least.
||You rang the number & got a looped recording with spaces
left to encourage the caller to speak, the best ones where
as effective as this with no bot or code at all, for scammers
you'd have given them the number as
one to call you back on tomorrow of course.
||What's the solution here? Start using the correct
word "phone pirates" instead of the incorrect term
"telemarketers", then organize to hire "phone
privateers" and demand the Government
letters of marque authorizing the capture of enemy
phone pirates and their equipment?
||If the telecom companies didn't want you to receive scam
calls, they would disconnect the scam numbers.
||If the police didn't want you to receive scam calls, they
arrest the perpetrators.
||Phone numbers traceable to a physical address paid
for by people traceable through payment records.
||Identifying both the address & the someone is piss easy,
acquiring cast iron evidence of the scam (phone records &
a recording of the outgoing calls) is also piss easy & yet the
same scam call will often (if not always) continue
to originate from the same
landline number in the same country that the scam is being
operated in over a year after being reported to both.
||I've received scam bot calls (not fallen
for) used 1471 typed the number into my browser & got
hundreds of hits about the scam dating back two years &
more in some instances, that they'd still be operating
so long after being identified is .. not reasonable.
||I'm talking about actual full blown scams here, not
||Frankly it's not good enough from either the police or
phone companies, both need suing for not having
the jobs they should have.
||I'm sure there are a lot of people in both organisations that
should be sacked as well.
||The bad thing about Lenny is he only works one time per scammer/telemarketer.
||//Government issue letters of marque authorizing
the capture of enemy phone pirates and their
||You know, it's all fun and games when I get to rip
on these scumbags when they call me, but elderly
people who are vulnerable can really get hurt
when targeted by
||I think there should be additional penalties for
trying to rip off the elderly. Is there enhancement
for targeting vulnerable old people? There should
||Voice, regarding the link. I'm cracking up. That
really is quite brilliant. Bravo. And whoa! Just
clicked on Skewed's links, this is a genuine art
||Great idea. I don't always have time myself to personally
waste their time but do it when I can. One guy was trying
to get me to install TeamViewer so he could take over my
computer. I already had TeamViewer but he didn't need
to know that.
||I kept 'mishearing' his instructions and started by saying
"Teen Viewer? I don't think my wife would like me doing
that." When I have had enough, I ask if their Mother
knows what they do for a living. They usually reply "Uh,
what?" I say "You know, do you tell your friends and
family that you try to scam people over the phone?" They
usually hang up then but I had one or two actually sound
sheepish and embarrassed.
||LOL. Teen viewer, good one.
||Playing dumb is always fun, but wrapping it up by
telling them off for being despicable is probably a
good way to close the call.
||This is a simpler version of the Lenny Chatbot that should
reel any teliscammer in.
||In a very doddering old voice record an outging message
that says: "Hi, OK is this about the payment? (pause to
give them time to celebrate their good luck and say "Uhh,
yes." Then say "Oh good, sorry I couldn't find my credit
card earlier but I have it now." Then proceed to read off
16 numbers from about the 1,000th place of pi but caugh
and loose your place, start over again, mispronounce
numbers, get confused and say "Oh, that's my library
card, hold on." The person will be so excited about their
good fortune in not even having to launch into a routine
and having a credit card offered to them immediately,
they'll be able to be kept on the hook for, maybe, ten,
fifteen minutes. Especially with the occasional "Now the
price was $20,000 dollars right? Oh hold on, the cat's
hungry. I'll be right back." The addition of lots of cat
noises would be central to this. Even cat fighting noises
where you go "Tibbles! Stop! I'm on the phone! Tibbles!
||Oh this is too good. I'm doing this. And Tibbles is a good
name for a cat. Think I'll name my next cat that if I ever
get another one.
||Scammers have instant verification of credit card numbers. The more modern ones even attempt an immediate $1 charge.
||But they never GET the credit card number, that's the
beauty of it.
||"Ok, 4392, 9012 (RHOWERRRR!!!) TIBBLES! BAD CAT!
TIBBLES!! STOP THAT!! Ok, where was I hold on, OK 4392,
90 OH wait, was this the first payment of $5,000 or the
full payment for $20,000? Let me go get the form you
me hold on....... (sound of the phone being put down,
lots of rustling around noises, chiding
of Tibbles, creaking doors, footsteps trailing down the
hall, distant filing cabinets slamming, slow, shuffling
footsteps coming back) You'd never even get a full 16
numbers. Hell, you could waste a good 5, 10 minutes just
reading the "contract" to the guy and asking questions
||He thinks he's about to get ten grand from a alzheimers
patient, if you're a good enough actor, you'll
be able to keep that guy on for a pretty good chunk of his
||Do people still answer phone calls from people they don't know? Leave a vm and I'll get back to you, otherwise it's not important enough to bother. It's actually quite straightforward.
||I guess if your idea of "fun" is dicking around with scam callers, have at it, but it's a huge waste of time and no doubt the scammers have heard it all before.
||I do like having "fun". Much better than stodgy, boring
old fun without the quotes.
||I have, possibly, lured these arseholes into a lurid world of
online porn, where I try to convince them they are the
subject of my fantasy scenario, for sport. It's usually good
for 20-120 seconds before they give up.
||My mother-in-law, who is 80, just sings "Happy Birthday" to
herself. They hang up.
||Most off the robocalls I get seem to be in Chinese. I suspect
someone has fed a wrong number into John Searle's thought
||All of mine are from India or Sri Lanka.
||If I seem a bit motivated to hit back at these guys
it's because of my experience with them trying to
take advantage of my elderly father. I'd be visiting
and he'd get the call, answer with "No thank you"
and on occasion I'd take the call for him and was
disgusted by the scams they'd try to pull on a
potentially vulnerable elderly person.
||So did I have "fun" messing with these assholes?
Damn right I did. Was it a waste of time? I suppose
if a woman was being assaulted in the street and
you went to her aid (something I've actually done
by the way, stopping a guy from beating a woman
in public in broad daylight) that could be
considered a waste of time too I guess.
||Good for your mother-in-law UB. That's awesome.
||That's not a fair comparison [doctorremulac3]. Saving a woman crossing the street vs. not answering a phone? Come on.
||Agree that this is an elderly focused problem. We've tried to educate our elders to let unknown calls go to vm, but some older habits die harder than others. Mother was almost fooled by the grandson in jail scam a few years back. Still she answers every call.
||I guess I can see what you consider "fun" as feeling like a form of retaliation against this particularly heinous act that takes advantage of our oldest, and taking some joy by giving them back a taste of their own medicine so to speak.
||The woman wasn't crossing the street, she was being
severely beaten while all the little pussy citizens standing
around just watched like obedient little sheep. I stopped
the guy. I believe she was a prostitute and this guy might
have been her pimp so I guess people didn't care.
||As far as messing with scumbag scammers, nothing wrong
with having a little "fun" at their expense.
||Checkout kitboga on youtube who has great fun
spinning various scammers for as long as humanly
possible in what is often entertaining and
||But for the sheer technical brilliance, give Jim
Browning a lookup as well - using a classic
reverso-manoeuvre, he performs long and detailed
surveillance ops on the scammers who call him,
monitoring them, foiling their attempts to scam
others, and confront them with their own
identities, bank-account numbers, and office
addresses, before handing over the collected
evidence over to the police. His craftmanship is a
joy to behold.
||Very cool, I have two new heros!
||Thank you Zen, make that 3.