Category Archives: Anatomy of a Scam

Anatomy of a Scam: Picking a Target

I’ve decided to be constructive for once, and started a post-series-thing where I explain how to scam. I’ll probably do one about once a week just to add content. Hopefully I don’t end up shooting myself in the foot by teaching everyone my tricks, but with the amount of information on “How not to be scammed” out there, it probably won’t make too much of a difference.

Picking a mark is like picking prime rib. There are certain qualities you look for in potential targets and you use what you know about them to roughly guess how smart they are. First off, their typing style. I’m not saying they type a “u” every now and then, I mean they literally can’t spell anything. Some of the quotes I’ve included in past posts reflect this really well. If your mark is typing like a retard, he probably is. I say probably because it’s mean to generalize people by the way they type… but it’s pretty accurate. Another thing to look out for is if they talk about stuff they do in real life. Examples such as “I had a cheese sandwich for lunch today” or “One time I did something and nothing significant happened because of it”. Yes, people have actually told me while scamming them, and those are often the dumbest and easiest marks there are. Also, the ones who say “X ship is so good it can do so much by itself” generally have zero concept of how this game works and are equally gullible. People who waste their money to buy ISK are also good targets.

Where do you find marks? Well, that’s the tricky part. It’s easy to find dumb people, but the difficulty is to find dumb people with assets. It can also be a challenge to find out if your mark has assets in the first place. A good way to find people with lots of ISK is the character bazaar. Just browse various threads and just mass contact people. Eventually you will find someone who isn’t thrown off by the unsolicited conversation that they will actually talk to you, and you can carry on the scam that way. Another way to do it, is if you’re doing a recruitment scam, you can ask for an API. There’s some way to link the API page so there are check boxes already marked, but I have no clue how to do that. If you can do that and use third party programs to monitor their assets, finding “goldmines” is easy. Don’t look at just the wallet either. Sometimes characters with low wallet balances are only “poor” because they just bought a pimped out Vindicator.

In all reality, scamming is just about dedication. If you open recruitment, browse the character bazaar, and buy/sell threads, you will find someone eventually. Don’t forget to snoop around for information about them either. The perk of scamming is you don’t have to find them in space. They aren’t going anywhere, the only thing you will accomplish by rushing is blowing the scam. Check their forum post history, battleclinic logs, read their bio. People put more information out than they realize. Exploit it, and you’ll be on your way to riches in no time.

And remember, I always accept donations 😉