As I mentioned earlier, I like to engage in “scambaiting” – where you fool a scammer into believing that you are a sucker and you waste as much of their time as possible to prevent them from moving on to a real victim or slow them down. I think if enough people did it, it would make a huge impact.
People have been asking me what I’m going to do now that some of the IRS scammers have been arrested. Oh, there are plenty more and I’m sure they’re just lying low at the moment. Some of them are still active. I learned that when they tell you you’re on a federally recorded line, they really are recording it. Splendid! This will make the investigators’ jobs so much easier and I hope they have a good laugh if they happen to run into one of my conversations with them. I especially hope they hear the one where my kids and I were British for 96 minutes while causing the scammer to believe we were going to the store to purchase a “federal tax voucher”, aka iTunes gift cards. You see, the store was 15 minutes away and then there was the usual trip to the bathroom. Don’t worry, he wasn’t bored. We sang annoying songs on the way there. (We just sat in our unmoving car and sang.) YOU CAN’T RIDE IN MY RED WAGON! THE AXLE’S BROKEN AND THE WHEELS ARE DRAGGIN’! SAME SONG! SAME VERSE! A LITTLE BIT LOUDER AND A LITTLE BIT WORSE!
This is my latest mischief. A computer scammer called my mom and she wanted me to call and mess with them. That number wasn’t working for me, so I located a working number and I’ve been messing with a particular scammer since Sept. 7th. That’s almost 2 glorious months. I haven’t talked to him on the phone in a long time though because I’m afraid I will laugh hysterically. I just tell him I’ve been too upset to talk.
During our initial conversation, he tried to fix (gain remote access) to my computer for almost an hour. I mean, just like he said, there was malware on it, so of course it would be acting up, right? It must be really annoying to a computer scammer when they tell you your computer is broken and you respond that your computer is too broken for them to even do anything with it.
“Jack Williams” told me all sorts of ridiculous stuff about my IP address no longer being secure because of a broken driver. He wanted me to go to helpme.net where he could gain remote access to my computer, but I employed all sorts of antics. The computer told me I needed to insert the repair disk. Then I suggested maybe we restart in safe mode. When he told me to go to helpme.net, I told him, “The computer says that site isn’t available in safe mode.” He can make up crap, so I can too, right?
At the end of that call, my friend came over to rehearse with me and I had to tell Jack (or was it his supervisor by then?) that my computer was too old and had too many issues to fix. I would need to buy a new one. That’s when he offered to give me a discount on security software for my new computer and he would even upload it for me. Wow, how nice of him to offer to ruin my new computer. I asked him repeatedly what their website was so I could shop for products and it was hilarious how he tried to get out of telling me. “Oh, we have everything!” It was even funnier when he started asking me if there was another computer in the house. Nope. “Is there a laptop?” You see, amazingly he would be able to fix my broken driver by getting remote access to another computer.
I thought that would be the end. The next day, Jack left a message asking if I got a new computer yet. Nope.
He called the next day and I answered. I explained that my husband Richard (not my husband’s real name) wouldn’t let me get a new computer. He told me that it wasn’t like I used it for work – I mostly used it to goof around on YouTube. Jack said he thought a computer was the “most important part of a person”, but I explained that we had many things to fix before we could replace it.
This man had invested a lot of time in me and he was determined to get something for his efforts. This was when he suddenly took great interest in me and asked to be my Facebook friend. He said that I make him laugh and that we should make each other laugh more. He said, “Tell me your Facebook ID.” I said, “How about you tell me your ID and then I’ll decide if I want to send you a Facebook request?”
So he gave me an email address that didn’t contain the name Jack Williams, but Ashwin. He explained that his boss made them use fake names because Americans don’t like people from India. I said that wasn’t true and that it didn’t make sense to use fake names because we can tell they’re from India. “Oh, really?” The thing that amazes me the most is how good these scammers think they are at speaking English. Anyway, he told me to look up his profile right that second using that email address. I said, “I don’t have a working computer, remember? He said, “What about your phone?” “I don’t have a cell phone.” He said, “You are a great lady!” sounding quite amused.
I told him I would need to go to the library to use the computer, but of course that didn’t happen for a while. I had told him my name was Princess Buttercup and after trying and failing to make a fake Facebook account, I finally turned to Google Plus. I knew that if I emailed Ashwin and that really was his gmail account, he would see my profile come up.
My cover photo says, “The most important thing in life is trusting everyone no matter what.” What a delicious phrase to a scammer, right?
I finally emailed him, telling him I was at the library, but couldn’t find his profile. I started to give out uncomfortable details about my life, making Richard sound a little more jerky by the day. I confided in Ashwin that Richard’s friend Fred came over to fix the computer and he started rubbing my back. After that, Fred was coming up with more excuses to come over while Richard was on his business trip in China.
Sure enough, Ashwin followed me on Google Plus and I had already started planting bizarre things. How weird could things get before he decided maybe he didn’t want to be my friend after all?
Things got ten times more hilarious when I said I told Fred about him and he wanted to know his company’s website. That’s when Ashwin claimed my imaginary friend had emailed him and called him a scammer.
Hey, Ashwin! Fred is MY imaginary friend! Of course, I was very upset with Fred. I was so upset, I needed to confront him over email and cc Ashwin. First I had to make a gmail account for Fred so that would be possible. Then he was on Google Plus too. After confronting him, he informed me (and Ashwin) that he had done no such thing, but that Ashwin was indeed a scammer, sent me a link to a news article about computer scams, and told me if I wouldn’t listen to him, maybe I would listen to Richard. He said I shouldn’t listen to Richard though because he wasn’t really in China on a business trip. He was in the Bahamas with his mistress!
Brytnie, the villainess we all love to hate in this story – she wrote back on Richard’s phone dying of laughter. You won’t believe her evil doings. To make things more interesting, one of my YouTube friends called Ashwin saying she was Brytnie and informed him that she was a 19-year-old stripper. Of course, I had to write that into the story. Brytnie is a horrible, horrible person.
Here are the current characters:
Fred Flint (who looks like Wesley from Princess Bride)
Richard (looks like Humperdinck)
Brytnie (you can only see her feet on the beach, but her later mug shot looks just like Keira Knightley)
Ethel (No profile, but she’s my feisty mother who beats people with umbrellas)
Ayma Moron (Looks like the “Mawwiage” guy from Princess Bride and was created by a YouTube friend)
Steve (Richard’s offended dad who shouts “INCONCEIVABLE!”
Charles Orchkatzelschwarf (Princess’s long lost father who needs money to come see her. Looks like Indigo Montoya)
There are more on the horizon. I’m now managing six different fake accounts and it’s a little complicated, but exactly the laugh I need during a stressful time in my life.
If you watch through this playlist in order, you can enjoy the story Ashwin inspired and discover what his goal was. What a little turd he is. He will always hold a special place in my heart. I’ll just tell you that no matter how hard things get in my fake life, Ashwin still has the nerve to ask for favors. When I called him, I never imagined it would evolve into this! If you like my videos, don’t forget to subscribe! 🙂