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Kaa
06-21-2012, 03:14 PM
"The researcher, Cormac Herley, looked into so-called “Nigerian scams,” named for the African nation where the scammers often claim to reside. The emails typically seek a cash investment and promise a lofty payoff, often linking themselves to off-shore corporations or royalty. Herley’s algorithm-rich analysis found that the obvious spam clichés are a deliberate attempt to weed out potential victims who are too savvy to fall for the scheme—and in turn make the most of the human capital required to secure funds from the people who are duped.

“Since gullibility is unobservable, the best strategy is to get those who possess this quality to self-identify,” Herley writes, and the scheme ingeniously lines up the most gullible recipients in one swoop. Those who are left “represent a tiny subset of the overall population” but nevertheless a lucrative one for the spammers."

(emphasis mine)

http://marginalrevolution.com/marginalrevolution/2012/06/spam-and-the-separating-equilibrium.html

Kaa

Tom Montgomery
06-21-2012, 03:25 PM
As long as it ain't me being scammed....

PeterSibley
06-21-2012, 04:43 PM
"The researcher, Cormac Herley, looked into so-called “Nigerian scams,” named for the African nation where the scammers often claim to reside. The emails typically seek a cash investment and promise a lofty payoff, often linking themselves to off-shore corporations or royalty. Herley’s algorithm-rich analysis found that the obvious spam clichés are a deliberate attempt to weed out potential victims who are too savvy to fall for the scheme—and in turn make the most of the human capital required to secure funds from the people who are duped.

“Since gullibility is unobservable, the best strategy is to get those who possess this quality to self-identify,” Herley writes, and the scheme ingeniously lines up the most gullible recipients in one swoop. Those who are left “represent a tiny subset of the overall population” but nevertheless a lucrative one for the spammers."

(emphasis mine)

http://marginalrevolution.com/marginalrevolution/2012/06/spam-and-the-separating-equilibrium.html

Kaa

A rather fancy way of stating the obvious.

BrianW
06-21-2012, 04:51 PM
I'm thinking the point being made, is the letters are purposefully so obviously a scam, that anyhow who responds must be really dumb, and therefor more likely to send money (or bank account info.) If the letters were almost believable, too many people would figure out the scam just before sending money, but after taking up some of the scammers time and resources.

Gerarddm
06-21-2012, 04:53 PM
So we are left to wonder then, who ARE the bozos on the bus to fall for this nonsense? Evidently, there's enough of them, or else the scams would die off from lack of income.

Disturbing.

Phillip Allen
06-21-2012, 05:13 PM
THE DNC trying to find potential voters?

ljb5
06-21-2012, 05:30 PM
THE DNC trying to find potential voters?

People who think the stock market crashed because Obama was an inexperienced president?

Phillip Allen
06-21-2012, 05:32 PM
People who think the stock market crashed because Obama was an inexperienced president?

you're the one who said it, not me

ljb5
06-21-2012, 05:41 PM
you're the one who said it, not me

No, I didn't.

Why don't you show us where I wrote that?

If you can't show it, it doesn't exist in reality.

Phillip Allen
06-21-2012, 05:53 PM
No, I didn't.

Why don't you show us where I wrote that?

If you can't show it, it doesn't exist in reality.

I did show you, you ignored it

are we going to get into another spin argument? (nah)

BrianW
06-21-2012, 06:14 PM
you're the one who said it, not me


No, I didn't.

Why don't you show us where I wrote that?

If you can't show it, it doesn't exist in reality.

Right here above...


...the stock market crashed because Obama was an inexperienced president...

:)

Tom Montgomery
06-21-2012, 06:18 PM
Well, the last five posts are a study in miscommunication.

The right-wingers don't grok subtle, ljb5.

George Jung
06-21-2012, 06:57 PM
Distractions aside, I appreciate the OP. I hadn't thought about it (at all, if I'm being upfront), but it makes sense. Not sure I would've given them that much credit, otherwise. Thanks.

ccmanuals
06-21-2012, 06:57 PM
THE DNC trying to find potential voters?

Tea party recruitment. :)

Phillip Allen
06-21-2012, 07:06 PM
Tea party recruitment. :)

well, it seemed like a good way to recruit SOMEBODY!

ljb5
06-21-2012, 08:02 PM
I did show you, you ignored it

are we going to get into another spin argument? (nah)

Phillip, you're really faltering. At least BrianW has the humor to put a little "..." to indicate when he's faking a quote, trying to be funny.

Let's think this through logically.

Are you suggesting that I posted false information with incorrect dates to accuse Obama of causing the stock market crash?

Does that seem like the sort of thing I would do?

Have you thought this out?

B_B
06-21-2012, 08:47 PM
I'm thinking the point being made, is the letters are purposefully so obviously a scam, that anyhow who responds must be really dumb, and therefor more likely to send money (or bank account info.) If the letters were almost believable, too many people would figure out the scam just before sending money, but after taking up some of the scammers time and resources.
That's an incredible insight; I'd never even come close to considering it. Amazing.

johnw
06-21-2012, 09:04 PM
"The researcher, Cormac Herley, looked into so-called “Nigerian scams,” named for the African nation where the scammers often claim to reside. The emails typically seek a cash investment and promise a lofty payoff, often linking themselves to off-shore corporations or royalty. Herley’s algorithm-rich analysis found that the obvious spam clichés are a deliberate attempt to weed out potential victims who are too savvy to fall for the scheme—and in turn make the most of the human capital required to secure funds from the people who are duped.

“Since gullibility is unobservable, the best strategy is to get those who possess this quality to self-identify,” Herley writes, and the scheme ingeniously lines up the most gullible recipients in one swoop. Those who are left “represent a tiny subset of the overall population” but nevertheless a lucrative one for the spammers."

(emphasis mine)

http://marginalrevolution.com/marginalrevolution/2012/06/spam-and-the-separating-equilibrium.html

Kaa

I wonder if it's a happy accident, and the ones who wrote the obvious letters were the successful ones, or if it's intentional.

2MeterTroll
06-22-2012, 10:54 AM
pretty much the same behavior as predators in the wild. Find the indicator of victimhood, a limp, slow, smells bad, stupid, inexperienced, ETC. this is why if i was mugging folks i would look for the concealed weapon, its a sign of victimhood that can be exploited.

Bob Adams
06-22-2012, 11:33 AM
Lighten up Illjay.:D

John of Phoenix
06-22-2012, 01:52 PM
Paraphrasing from the report:
...1.63% of all users are attacked and .34% are successful.
Surprising it's that successful. I had a client fall for it back in the late 80's until I clued him and it was damn hard to convince him it was a scam after he'd gotten into it.

George Jung
06-22-2012, 04:31 PM
I heard of a relatively wealthy rancher in our area getting taken for $10,000, several years back. A fool and his money.

Phillip Allen
06-22-2012, 04:35 PM
didn't Chuck Philips lead one of them a merry chase once?

Lew Barrett
06-22-2012, 04:50 PM
If I recall, Ira Glass's (This American Life) outfit chased one of these scams down while recording it for posterity and then airing the resulting mess on NPR. Does anybody else have a recollection of that program? It was quite a story.

Bob Adams
06-22-2012, 07:47 PM
didn't Chuck Philips lead one of them a merry chase once?


Oh yeah he did. I bet he had them talking to themselves!

bobbys
06-22-2012, 08:59 PM
And to think of all the years i finished off my Lima beans for these people.....