Here's one great way to prank a phone scammer!

Originally published at: Here's one great way to prank a phone scammer! | Boing Boing


If I’m bored and answer, I try to keep them on the phone for as long as possible and then eventually tell them, “yeah I’m just keeping you on the phone for as long as I can, so you have less time to call someone who might actually fall for your bullshit.” They usually curse and hang up.


Once in a while it’s fun to mess with them and string them along. My closing line is usually something to the effect of “look, man, if you’re going to be a scumbag crook, at least try to be a competent one.”

Often I don’t get that far. Someone recently tried the old “fraudulent charges on your credit card” phone scam. Just for fun I asked him to confirm the last four digits on the card. He paused, then said “well sir, the first digit is a four”. I just started laughing at him and he hung up without even cursing me out in broken English.


Should “Anchor Voice” be recognized as an official accent, like “Received Pronunciation” or “Mid-Atlantic” ?

It’s never used in real life and doesn’t spring up naturally, but it’s extensively used across the country by a handful of individuals in each local TV market.


Lately I’ve been keeping them on the line and off-script by complimenting them and mentioning what a wonderful, sonorous voice they have. Have they ever thought of a career in radio or narrating audio books? They could make a lot of money doing that. I work in the business and could connect them with people that could make it happen. If they bite I try to get them to give me their phone number so my agent can contact them to arrange an audition.


Y’all are too nice. I usually go straight to mentioning the blood of my enemies and the lamentations of their women.


would you like to see the future… eeer

you must be moderately patience…

Wow, just wait until I tell you about “Radio DJ Voice”…


I have a Prince in Africa flogging my phone daily with offers too good to pass up on.


I’ve taken to asking if their mother is still alive.
They do often answer.

Yes: ‘does she know what you do for a living and is she proud of you?’
No: ‘do you think she would approve of what you do for a living if she were still alive?’

But I fear these scumbags cannot be shamed.


It’s on the same language tree, yes. Just like Carnival Barker and Auctioneer share a branch.


I used to do that with people calling me up, e.g. trying to get me to switch long-distance phone services (“I’m sorry, I don’t have a phone.”) or sell me on time-shares or Reno vacations (“Oh, Reno - a friend of mine once shot a man there, just to watch him die. Totally got away with it.”) I could string them along for a while. But I can’t really do it anymore - it’s all automated messages, so I have to waste more time and effort to find a person to talk to than they’ll waste dealing with me (especially since they’re very quick to hang up once I start going too far off their scripts). Takes all the fun out of it.


I’m skeptical of the timing for these types of videos. Her phone is ringing and she happened to have another phone or camera set up to record? How did she record the audio from her iPhone? It seems that her phone would have gone to voicemail by the time she got the recording device turned on


Best way to waste their time: start giving your cc number (first 8 digits will make them think it is real). Fake 4 digits after that, and hang up.

Make them think they are going to score, and then rip the rug out from under them.

They will often call back a few times, and if you want to mess with them then, they are hooked. Feign bad connection, play funny sounds in the background, etc.


Valid Credit Card Numbers for Testing Purposes!


You are my hero, Iwan so looking for that.
I will print few of these for their next call.

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I have a friend who responds with, “Yes, this is Laura but you have actually called the phone number that I use to conduct free Bible studies. Can I schedule you for a study?” She hasn’t had any takers yet.


After getting annoyed by a series of scam calls, I once strung one guy along for an incredible ride. He said he was from Microsoft tech support, calling about “my case”, and that they had discovered I had viruses on my computer and he was going to help me get them off the computer. I acted alarmed at this discovery and very grateful that he would help me with it. He then handed me off to another “expert” who would handle my case.

Another guy got on and started telling me that I needed to start by finding the Control and Alt and Delete keys. I told him I wasn’t that good with computers and please be patient, while I chattered about random things, keeping him on the line. I kept losing track of what he had asked me to do, and he carefully told me how to find the keys on the keyboard. I constantly piped in with irrelevant and silly questions, like should I use the left one or the right one? They were different keys so obviously they must do something different, and since he didn’t know that, he must not be very skilled at this, and where did he get his training anyway?

I could hear him getting frustrated, but I kept up a friendly attitude and participated just enough to keep him engaged and trying to prove he knew what he was doing, but not enough to really get anywhere. He painstakingly pursued me, and finally after slowly guiding me through this key stroke and that, he asked what it said on my screen, and I asked don’t I have to turn on the computer first for it to do anything? You don’t sound very bright if you didn’t know that! I kept insulting him like that, being concerned but accommodating, and saying I would do what he said anyway because I needed to get the virus off my computer, meanwhile asking him about random ridiculous things I heard about viruses and computers. I could hear the tension in his voice escalating.

After about 25 minutes of this it gradually dawned on him that I was messing with him, but he was still slightly confused by the whole thing. Finally, he totally blew his top, shouting and cursing and calling me names. Meanwhile I just stayed calm, and told him that he wasn’t being very nice and he probably needed some remedial training in good customer support behavior and he better not hang up now because I needed him to finish getting the virus off my computer! He kept up the screaming and name calling at the top of his lungs, and finally slammed the phone down. I never heard from them again.


the fun days of impromptu pranking of scammers is over I’m afraid. it would not surprise me if some were building entire databases of recordings with extensive vocabulary sets on individuals.

say nothing hang up the phone