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Monday, August 7, 2006

 

"Baiters Teach Scammers a Lesson (419 Nigerian)

photos of scammers doing stupid things  http://blog.wired.com/419baiters/ 


"Baiters Teach Scammers a Lesson

By Robert Andrews

Sourece Wired News
<excerpt>

........"But Metimbers and crew turn the tables on scammers one by one, boomeranging the tricksters' own tactics to entice them into performing outlandish tasks in desperate pursuit of cash -- then trumpeting evidence of the con artists' naïveté for the online world's amusement.

A 43-year-old, self-employed computer engineer from Manchester, England, Metimbers has most recently spun counter-yarns that have compelled 419ers to make elaborate wood carvings, pose for comical photos and fly from London to Scotland. In one episode, which concluded in March after a five-month exchange, he succeeded in having a Nigerian fraudster tattoo "Baited by Shiver" on his body in order to claim a fictional $46,000 prize.

"Another time, the scammer thought he was going to get $18,000 out of me, but I actually got the guy to send me $80," said Metimbers, who started the 419 Eater community site almost three years ago after receiving a wave of spam in his inbox.

"I've got between five and 10 on the go at any one time," Metimbers said. "The worst thing that could possibly happen to these guys is they get their photo slapped on a website. I feel like a cybervigilante, doing my bit for the public."

Metimbers, whose real forename is Mike and who spends up to seven hours a day scambaiting, is team captain in a growing internet blood sport, in which photographic evidence of competing baiters' successes constitute trophies.

419 Eater alone numbers more than 20,000 participants around the world. Other initiatives have also surfaced in the anti-scam resistance movement, including Artists Against 419, which kills criminals' online accounts with a deluge of traffic. Baiters delight in convincing correspondents to be photographed with embarrassing and lewd Western banners -- like Metimbers, they operate using aliases to protect themselves against the death threats issued by disgruntled scammers upon realizing they have been had.

Other humor-heavy vigilantes include Bait A Mugu, theScamBaiter.com, ScamBaits, Scamorama and The Billy Goat Curse.

"Shiver is exceedingly creative in getting scammers to allow their greed to override their judgment," said one disciple nicknamed mrsbean, a 29-year-old female IT worker from Kentucky who claims to have wasted months of organized scammers' time.

"It is equal parts theater, chess game, psychological study, crime prevention, education and vigilante justice; it's a battle of the wits," said mrsbean. "Internet scams are unique in that they offer you an opportunity to personally combat them without compromising your own safety; the same is just not true of most crime -- one wouldn't take on the drug dealers in a local neighborhood, for instance.".....

http://www.wired.com/news/technology/internet/0,71387-0.html?tw=wn_index_12

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