Scams are for suckers

Sometimes it feels like people are just asking to be scammed. I can’t remember where I read this, but I suspect that the saying that you can only scam a person if they are dishonest has more than a grain of truth to it. To that, we can also add that victims are likely to be – how can I say this without wounding sensibilities? – quite a few fries short of a Happy Meal.

I don’t want to sound unsympathetic to those who do fall victim to some online scam or other because really, I do feel for them. But more often than not, before I actually start feeling sorry for them I also suffer an attack of most unladylike sniggering.

Take the latest scam that is doing the rounds: the Malta Bankers’ Association issued a warning that people are being contacted by phone and advised that they are due a refund in bank charges. The catch – because, yes there always is a catch – is that you need to put forward a €100 payment before the refund can be affected.

Harrumph. I seriously hope that this statement was released more in the spirit of prevention, rather than because some nitwit has actually fallen for the scheme. How, in the name of everything whose IQ at least matches that of a cocker spaniel, does anyone actually fall victim to this sort of thing?

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