If you've ever been on the Internet, or just own a cell phone these days, you've probably come across a scammer in one form or another. Hell, you don't even need to try selling anything online and scumbags will call or text you from out of the blue, saying that you have a virus on your computer or posing as a friend who's stranded in some country overseas.
It's annoying as hell to deal with, but it's become a fact of life now. The worst part is many of these scammers are trying their stupid little plans from remote locations in other countries, so it's not like you can get at them and give them a well-deserved slap in the mouth.
However, you can get back at them.
1. This dude who angered a scammer so much that they took credit for September 11th.
2. Or this 419 Eater post where a guy convinced a Nigerian scammer to write Harry Potter And The Chamber Of Secrets by hand and send him scanned PDFs of the work.
You can check out the entire amazing story here, but it eventually ended up in the scammer blowing their lid once they realized they actually wrote out a huge portion of a novel by hand.
At this point Cyril seemed to gather more than two brain cells together and come to the realisation that he had been taken for a ride.
From: Cyril Ifey
To: Dirk Gently
Date: March 7, 2006
Look you shameless scammer with the name Dirk And Arthur, I already know what you are upto all this while starting from the day you "died" as Arthur Dent AND THEN RESSURECTED AS Dirk GENTLY. YOU HAVE NO PHYSICAL ADDRESS,YOUR SCAMM WEBSITE IS PERPETUALLY BEING UPGRADED AND NO TELEPHONE YOU CALL YOUR OWN. I FELL FOR YOU INITIALLY BUT REALISED LATER THE SHAMLESS IDIOT WITHOUT CONSCIENCE THAT YOU ARE. I DONT NEED YOUR MONEY AND OFCOURSE YOU CANT HAVE ACCESS TO MY BANK ACCOUNT. THERE IS NO MONEY FOR YOU TO TAKE FROM THAT ACCOUNT I SENT YOU. YOU ARE A BIG LOOSER HERE ON EARTH AND EVEN AFTER.
DIE A MISSERABLE REAL DEATH THIS TIME AND RESSURECT ONLY IN HELL.
Cyril seems to be under the assumption that I wanted access to his bank account and that I am the scammer. This guy truly is as dumb as a brush.
That was the last email I received from Cyril.
3. The same guy convinced a scammer to carve heavy wooden replicas of items and ship them, with his own money, to the UK.
I attach 10 sample pictures of the item I want carving. Three small example images are below though the pictures I sent to Boko were very large and detailed.
Good news. The package is on the way.
From: John Boko
To: Derek Trotter
Date: March 21, 2006
Subject: Re: Special appeal
I have been able to package and send the sample today by FedEx with tracking 8564746XXXXX
I was told by fedex agent here that it ought to arrive by wednesday. They also said that the tracking will start functioning when the package has arrived on transit in France. So I believed it will start tracking before the end of today otherwise the number is ok.
I attached a photo of the sample for your view.
John attaches a photo of the carving. Looks promising:
He even managed to get the scammer to sculpt something else:
I send John a dozen very high resolution pictures of a C64 taken from various angles. A selection of much smaller versions are below:
John contacts me to let me know the carving is ready to ship.
From: John Boko
To: Derek Trotter
Date: April 11, 2006
Subject: Re: Special appeal
I have completed the sample but was unable to ship it today due to public holidays here. I don't know if it effected London too. I have attached a scan photo of the sample from three different views.
I will make sure it is sent by tomorrow and by the Grace of God it will reach you before Friday.
Thanks and best regard.
And after some back-and-forth, let the dude know that he can't do business with him due to critters "damaging" the wood.
From: Rodney Trotter
To: John Boko
Date: April 21, 2006
Dear Mr. Boko,
Thank you for your reply yesterday. I am sorry for the slight delay in my reply however I have been trying to investigate the latest "problem" with your submission and I had to make a few calls.
It appears that your package was infiltrated by a rodent, more accurately a hamster. We have provisionally named it 'Bert'. Unfortunately Bert must have been caught inside the packaging during shipping somewhere between your location and our head office. Initial veterinary reports point to Bert being an African hamster, so I can only assume that Bert chewed his way into the packaging shortly after you posted it.
I am afraid Bert has badly damaged the carving as can be seen in the attached photographs. Bert has gnawed a hole all the way through the carving as well as creating many smaller holes around the piece.
Before my brother left for the Blackpool exhibition he and I managed to capture Bert so that we could take it to the vets to have it examined to try to find out exactly where he came from.
To my shame I have to admit that I was extremely disappointed and indeed angry with Bert for the damage that he caused to your impressive work, and as you can see I was ready to shoot him, however my brother is a very active animal rights campaigner and would not allow it. He made me promise to take Bert to out local hamster sanctuary which is indeed what I have done.
Under normal circumstances items which arrive damaged are usually disqualified by us, but under these exceptional circumstances the board members have decided to try to come to some agreement on a donation payment as soon as possible. I shall contact you again hopefully later today to let you know the outcome of this meeting.
Rodney Trotter - Sales
Trotters Fine Art
I attach photos of Bert and the damage he has caused. The damage is of course faked. No Commodore 64 computer was harmed during this scambait:
4. Or these gold scammers who tried passing off a fake golden necklace getting caught red-handed.
Reddit user Origami_Asparagus breaks it down:
At 0:12, the scammers hand over real gold. The clerk proceeds to test it and confirm it's real
At 1:32, the scammers ask for their gold back to compare with other shops. They quickly change their minds and...
At 1:39, they hand back the "gold", except this time it's fakes. That's the swap.
The clerk proceeds to check again, which is what they were counting on not happening, and there you have it.