Last Updated on by SCARS Editorial Team

Skype Calling Dangers

Some have asked why they use Skype?

The first thing you have to ask yourself is why not? Scammers individually are not very smart. There are brilliant ones, and others incredibly dumb. But scamming is an industry, and like any industry, they have supporters – technicians and technologists that provide services for scammers. A woman was recently arrested in the Uk for writing scripts for scammers – and she made a good living doing it too!

So scamming is more like a franchise business. The scammers buy their scammerScammer A Scammer or Fraudster is someone that engages in deception to obtain money or achieve another objective. They are criminals that attempt to deceive a victim into sending more or performing some other activity that benefits the scammer. business package from other genious scammers. This includes scripts, methods and procedures, and software (such as for recording live videos for playback on skype).

With skype, they use recorded video to make you think you are talking with the real person, but they always have audio problems – their microphone is not working, so you can’t hear them – because it is a recording. and they certainly don’t want you to hear their real voice (with their Scammer GrammarScammer Grammar Scammer Grammar (a term invented by the SCARS Team back in 2012) - is a writing style that is largely very bad English, bad grammar, mixed with West African slang and speech patterns. It is hard to define but easy to recognize when you see it. It is often referred to as Pidgin English, though this is not technically true. This most often shows when individual scammers (even if educated) try to improvise and create new written communications. Do a search on our website for SCAMMER GRAMMAR to find countless examples.™.

Another danger of skype is that they can record your video stream and use you to scamScam A Scam is a confidence trick - a crime -  is an attempt to defraud a person or group after first gaining their trust through deception. Scams or confidence tricks exploit victims using their credulity, naïveté, compassion, vanity, irresponsibility, or greed and exploiting that. Researchers have defined confidence tricks as "a distinctive species of fraudulent conduct ... intending to further voluntary exchanges that are not mutually beneficial", as they "benefit con operators ('con men' - criminals) at the expense of their victims (the 'marks')". A scam is a crime even if no money was lost. others or to use it for blackmail.

Rules to the safe use of skype:

1: No audio? If the other person’s audio is not working, turn off the video immediately or just cover your camera. Disconnect the call – they are using recorded video, and will also be recording your call.

BY THE WAY, YOU SHOULD ALWAYS KEEP YOUR CAMERA COVERED UNLESS ACTUALLY USING IT FOR A VIDEO CALL – YOU CANNOT TELL WHEN IT IS ENABLED AND SOMEONE IS WATCHING

2: Always as for “Proof of lifeProof of Life Proof of Life Photos or Sign Photos are photos that scammers use to prove they are real. These are typically photoshopped photos to add some text or information to a previously stolen photo of the individual being used for the scam. The idea is that a victim requests proof with a photo showing a newspaper or some phrases and the scammer would then take it and share it with the victim. But as always, it is just more deception. – meaning ask for some small action in the video call so you can see the person on the screen respond. If they do not and ignore it – probable recorded video scammer.

3: Family photos – Always ask them for family photos in your early call. This is another form of Proof of Life, but it also helps you better connect with a real person. Everybody has some family photos.

4. In early calls probe their local knowledge. For example, if they say they live in a specific town, they must know it well. So google a list of restaurants, and look at what streets they are on. Then ask them if they liked a specific restaurant but switch the streets with another one – you are trying to trip them up – also mess up the restaurant name a bit – if they take a couple of minutes to answer you can reasonably be sure they are looking it up. However, since a scammer doesn’t live in the city they say, they have a very hard time looking things up correctly. Local knowledge is a great way to detect scammers.

5. You can use Skype to place phone calls too. If they have given you a phone number, such as in the U.S. call it using SKYPE – never call it using your smartphone or they will have your phone number. The text only phone numbers they use will never put the call through, after trying a few times, this will tell you that you have a probable scammer.

If you all have any other questions, please let us know?

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SCARS Editorial Team

SCARSSCARS SCARS - Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc. A government registered crime victims' assistance & crime prevention nonprofit organization based in Miami, Florida, U.S.A. SCARS supports the victims of scams worldwide and through its partners in more than 60 countries around the world. Incorporated in 2015, its team has 30 years of continuous experience educating and supporting scam victims. Visit www.AgainstScams.org to learn more