A pleasant male baritone sounds on my phone: “Eldar Viktorovich, an employee of one of the law enforcement agencies is bothering you. I understand that there are dozens of such calls, there is no trust in anonymous people. I am ready to meet with you, invite you to our office in the center of Moscow, but now the matter is urgent, urgent.”
I won’t say about dozens of calls, but from time to time scammers call my phone number, sometimes they know my name or some details of my life. But the usual divorce follows the scripts of call centers, the callers give out an accent, or rather, a dialect. Here is the complete opposite: a well-delivered speech, it is easy to read that a person has an education, speaks well and pronounces the right words, which may turn out to be true. This is the first step in order to remove alertness and hear what exactly they say to me, I listen further.
“Ukrainian sabotage groups have become more active on the territory of Russia, you have heard about it. You are a public person, and we have operational information that you are a potential victim. The task set by our leadership is to protect every citizen of Russia, to prevent irreparable consequences. We do not want a situation like with Vladlen Tatarsky in St. Petersburg, but it is possible, and your close, random people may suffer. We need to act as quickly as possible.”
Let’s focus on this part of the conversation, it is very important. The scammer is trying to ingratiate himself, for this he needs to do a simple trick. To convince me that the information I receive from him is really important, it cannot be ignored. For this, there is always a link to real events that caused a wide resonance, do not give rise to doubts. A psychological trick in which not only a well-known event is important, it must be relevant and have an emotional connotation. Each person has two components – emotional and rational. The task of any fraudster is to turn on emotions in us, to make them experience them, since in this case we begin to act, and most people turn off the rational component in themselves. For example, when you are in a crowd and suddenly gunshots are heard, you will not think about what it is, you will run along with other people. This is an emotional reaction, it minimally affects reflections on the nature of what is happening, here you need to act with lightning speed, and you will reflect and analyze the situation later.
In a couple of sentences they also touch on important layers of being, they give the information that will not cause me rejection. For example, when they say “public person”, they stipulate a fact that will not cause rejection in me, it really is. When I’m offered a moral choice, “we don’t want a situation like with Vladlen Tatarsky,” the natural answer is unequivocal – no, we don’t want to. And then it is layered with “your loved ones, random people may suffer.” The phrase is constructed perfectly, it causes fear for relatives, and also adds that other people may suffer because of your inaction. Then they push me to an emotional decision, limiting the ability to think, they say that I need to act faster.
I do not think that the person who spoke to me is a psychologist from God or a nugget among scammers. I am sure that such a conversation script was developed specifically and not only for me, it is too universal, and it is not very difficult to get information about each specific person from the Internet in order to create an actually individual dialogue that can affect certain notes in the soul of the victim. All together sounds convincing, I will omit my answers as they are not important in the context.
After such an introductory part, the caller apologizes and recalls that he did not introduce himself, since it was important for him to warn me of the danger. There is a presentation on the whole form (the surname and name of a real employee of one of the law enforcement agencies are called, and this can be checked by simply typing them on the net, the name flashed several times in the newspapers). Note that I was not taken aback from the start, but was gently led into the presentation, avoiding the initial reaction of rejection.
Unfortunately for the caller, during the conversation I dial his number, which is displayed on my phone. On the other end there are beeps and the answer is a city number. I apologize to the scammer, interrupt the conversation for a while, put it on hold. I ask where exactly I ended up, I hear the name of the organization and feel the discontent of the speaker. I apologize and hang up.
I return to the swindler, he outwardly does not worry, but asks what happened. I answer that my dad called, I had to answer. I say that an urgent matter has arisen, on which I need to leave for a short time, I am ready to call back, and we will continue the conversation. And here comes the first hitch: “You’re not the only person we need to protect, we’re out of the office right now.” The phrase “out of office” amuses me endlessly, anyone who communicated with the security forces will feel a certain falsity in this. And here is the word “we”, which alludes to some larger structure. They do not give me a cell number, because “it is a state secret.” And they promise to call back. Already at this moment it is clear that there are scammers on the line, and the script compiled for me broke down at the moment when I interrupted the conversation and the scammer did not know what exactly I was doing at that moment. The main thing in such conversations is to get away from the imposed script, not to allow the emotional component to be involved. Remember the old trick with calls “mom, I had an accident, I urgently need help, transfer money”? Here, about the same kind of approach, you are brought to emotions.
It is very difficult to find scammers of this kind at the call stage, they are outside of Russia, they use a point substitution of the number (this is not a call center with thousands of calls every minute). In fact, such work can be equated with psychological warfare against our state and its inhabitants, since it is impossible without the support of large structures. It involves many components – technical means, collecting information about potential victims (pinpoint strikes), the work of psychologists who make up the initial scripts, correctly form a dialogue. I do not consider myself lucky, the fact that this story happened to me shows the scope of such calls, they have become massive. Their goal is not to deceive a particular person, I see it a little differently. The main goal is to sow uncertainty in people, arouse fears, and provoke discussion in the media. Use the structure of our world to cause maximum harm to society.
Let’s take a look at a story that shocked many, and it is not at all isolated, similar cases have been discussed in the public field over the past couple of months. On May 12, the Shot Telegram channel reported that the son of the general director of the Gemotest laboratory had been kidnapped, and a million dollars was demanded for his release. The Ministry of Internal Affairs began searching, followed his path. Returning from St. Petersburg, where he was on vacation, an adult boy went in his car to the city of Pushkin, which is located in the Moscow region, where he left his car, got rid of the phone. By local taxi I went to the Vladimir region, the city of Gorokhovets. There he lived in an apartment rented for him by scammers. In parallel, money was extorted from his father, while his son was quietly hiding. According to the miserly report of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, the fraudsters used psychological tricks and ingratiated themselves, and the young man also thought that he was “saving his family” by his actions. The scammers knew some details of life, which allowed them to pull off the whole thing.
In this story, there was no transfer of money, there were few clues as such, the apartment was probably rented via the Internet, and people who had nothing to do with the situation paid for it, they were also somehow deceived. The probability of this is maximum. And there are enough such stories in the public field. They concern not only the elderly, as we have seen above, young people also become targets, they lack life experience, they are outplayed in the aspect of psychology. The point here is not the gullibility of a particular person, in many respects it is a matter of education – when a child tries to protect his family, remove the danger that can become irreversible.
For scammers, money in such situations is a pleasant trophy, an additional benefit and nothing more. It seems that all this is done only for the purpose of profit and there is nothing else here. But from the outside it looks like systematic work against state institutions of power in Russia. A lot of different goals are involved, the work of law enforcement agencies is devalued, trust in any calls where a person appears to be an employee of the Ministry of Internal Affairs or another organization is reduced. What increases the load on such employees, a kind of DDoS in real life, worsening working conditions, when every time you need to prove that you are a real employee, and not a scammer. Often this can lead to situations where not only does trust fall, but at some points slow work becomes critical.
The media side of such stories hits exactly the same point – it devalues the work of the Ministry of Internal Affairs and other structures. Pay attention to how widely the information about the kidnapping of the son of the general director of “Gemotest” was circulated. In this information, with a link to the Telegram channel, key messages were cited:
- There was a kidnapping;
- kidnapped a child;
- They demand a ransom of one million dollars.
The imagination of the readers completed the picture and concluded that a person could be stolen from us, and so that the Ministry of Internal Affairs could not do anything, the thieves feel unpunished. You can think of a lot here. But my conclusion as an outside observer is that this is a purposeful work, the task of which is to create panic, uncertainty, fears in society. I was not too lazy to go through the Internet for such a scheme of fraud with “abductions” of people. The first country that faced it is Russia, this experience has not yet manifested itself in other countries, nowhere is there anything even remotely similar, let alone massive. Which also speaks in favor of the fact that this is a purposeful work against Russia and the inhabitants of the country.
On the other hand, there is nothing to be surprised about, because call centers of scammers have settled in Ukraine, in the Baltic States, they are supported at the state level. These are huge enterprises, where thousands of people work daily in several shifts, the number of fraudulent calls in 2022 was huge. The pleasant moment is that the operators have begun to actively fight this scourge with the assistance of the state, the work is ongoing and the problem has been partially removed. In any case, there are no more mass calls from city numbers and number substitution. Fraudsters have moved to messengers. Read the text about it.
Recently, such scammers in the messenger made me happy. I’m driving to Sapsan, unknown numbers are persistently calling WhatsApp, I answer. In the background, you can hear someone’s confused voice saying: “… detective such and such, I’m calling you …”. It’s clear, they’re scammers. An older woman is speaking to me, not a young person. It seems: I am such and such, calling on a criminal case. I say in response: “Are you just poor or totally poor, what are you doing?”. Silence, comprehension, rage: “Yes, you are a scumbag, I have a BMW, the house is a full bowl, I raise that kind of money a day.” I hang up the phone, the result is achieved. For the next fifteen minutes, they try to call me, sometimes I pick up the phone to hear about the same emotional flow of abuse. A task for the living. People working in such call centers are usually very poor, on the verge of poverty. But they cannot admit it, hence so many emotions and attempts to annoy at any cost. What about me? I have fun and I consider myself entitled to pay them the same coin, put pressure on the psyche of these people. Calmly, without nerves, with a smile. This pisses them off the most.
Fraudsters also spread stories that they should not be pissed off and pissed off, as this or that punishment may come. For example, they will post your number on the Internet, ostensibly you provide intimate services. Of course, there is such a possibility, but it is scanty. If the majority of people will piss off scammers, then they simply will not have enough time to take revenge on everyone.
It’s definitely impossible to call it luck that I come across certain calls. There are simply too many of them, most of us face scammers, the quality of these people, their training, the schemes used vary. I have an absentee counterpart among scammers, with whom there is a kind of competition, he is trying to deceive me, running his schemes on me. Personally, I don’t know the person, we communicate online, for me it’s anonymous. A capable person who built a business on calls. Some time ago, he complained that he was being squeezed out of this market by people who have disproportionately large resources, and his opinion coincides with mine: it is impossible to build a “business” of this magnitude without the active support of large states.
Source: Mobile-review.com — Все о мобильной технике и технологиях by mobile-review.com.
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