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Last post Author Topic: Too Stupid to Own a Computer  (Read 7293 times)

Renegade

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Too Stupid to Own a Computer
« on: November 10, 2010, 09:14:59 PM »
This is sad, but true, and completely hiliarious:

http://www.net-secur...are_news.php?id=1524

Quote
The couple are said to have tricked the composer into believing that, while investigating the virus, they had found evidence that his life was in danger – concocting a story that the virus had been tracked to a hard drive in Honduras, and that evidence had been found that the composer's life was in danger.

And they took him for $6,000,000.

Some people really are too stupid and should never own a computer...
Slow Down Music - Where I commit thought crimes...

Freedom is the right to be wrong, not the right to do wrong. - John Diefenbaker

Stoic Joker

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Re: Too Stupid to Own a Computer
« Reply #1 on: November 11, 2010, 07:10:21 AM »
Okay, so after you cut a 7 figure check to a small computer shop because you've been convinced that this mom & pop shop has a finger on the pulse of the criminal underworld (most do right..?). Only then do you think to ask the cops if this might just be bullshit?!?

Wow! ...A fool and his money (really) are soon parted.

(given that it was an oil tycoon they targeted) Just let those two crazy kids go, they've earned the money. Have them donate half to an educational charity and then put them on tour explaining to people why being gullible is bad.

4wd

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Re: Too Stupid to Own a Computer
« Reply #2 on: November 11, 2010, 05:50:47 PM »
(given that it was an oil tycoon they targeted)

His oil tycoon relative will just put up your fuel prices to cover the cheque....should be recovered in 2.5748394858 seconds.

sajman99

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Re: Too Stupid to Own a Computer
« Reply #3 on: November 11, 2010, 06:56:55 PM »
Ha! I'll bet Halliburton is somehow behind this entire sordid tale. ;D

(edit: just a little petrochemical humor--it's apparently trendy to slam Halliburton these days. ;))

cranioscopical

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Re: Too Stupid to Own a Computer
« Reply #4 on: November 11, 2010, 08:26:44 PM »
just a little petrochemical humor
What a gas!

techidave

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Re: Too Stupid to Own a Computer
« Reply #5 on: November 11, 2010, 09:13:32 PM »
 ;D

40hz

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Re: Too Stupid to Own a Computer
« Reply #6 on: November 11, 2010, 09:24:33 PM »

Eóin

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Re: Too Stupid to Own a Computer
« Reply #7 on: November 12, 2010, 11:32:10 AM »
Folks feel free to disagree with on this, I fact I welcome having my opinions reversed - but sometimes I find it hard to understand why something like this is illegal. It's morally wrong absolutely! But is it so different from what companies do a lot of the time?

[edit] Just to add, I do tend to believe that things which are unambiguously morally wrong (I don't include religious morality in that list) probably should be illegal. I just don't understand how our capitalist societies separate scams from business?
« Last Edit: November 12, 2010, 12:03:56 PM by Eóin »

Stoic Joker

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Re: Too Stupid to Own a Computer
« Reply #8 on: November 12, 2010, 12:46:09 PM »
I just don't understand how our capitalist societies separate scams from business?
It does seem to be a very thin gray line don't it... :)

Deozaan

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Re: Too Stupid to Own a Computer
« Reply #9 on: November 12, 2010, 02:46:38 PM »
That's silly.

A business provides a good or service, generally in exchange for money. A scam provides nothing in exchange for money.


app103

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Re: Too Stupid to Own a Computer
« Reply #10 on: November 12, 2010, 03:11:29 PM »
You know, you guys laugh, thinking you have to be really stupid to fall for a scam, when it could happen to any of you, with the right scam. Nobody is immune. (I am a reasonably intelligent person and I have fallen for a scam before, that cost me over $5000)

The next person to fall for some sort of scam could be someone you know...someone you love...maybe one of your parents or a brother, sister, child, best friend, etc. And with the right scam, it could even be you.

The point to this article wasn't to present what happened to this guy so you could all laugh at him. It was to warn you that people that are not knowledgeable about this kind of stuff can be easy victims for scammers, and you need to keep an eye on what is going on with the people you care about. Have a talk with them and make sure they will come to you for advice before shelling out any large sum of money for any computer related services (and define exactly what "large" means!).

Eóin

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Re: Too Stupid to Own a Computer
« Reply #11 on: November 12, 2010, 03:21:52 PM »
Of course anyone can, and most of us at some point in our lives probably have fallen for a scam, maybe not even that good of a one. But, I do think everyone is entitled to laugh when we see someone displaying such an extreme degree of stupidity and cluelessness.

Stoic Joker

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Re: Too Stupid to Own a Computer
« Reply #12 on: November 12, 2010, 04:00:25 PM »
A business provides a good or service, generally in exchange for money

Just because there is a product in the box doesn't mean it's worth (anywhere near) what you were charged for it, or any more than the box it came in.

Scareware, you get your product, you pay your money...fair deal right?

Insurance companies, Constantly try to over insure everybody for everything ... seriously, are you really worried that that many things might actually happen to you? I have full coverage insurance on my truck, because the bank says so... (hay that's a freebie example) I got rear ended by a hit and run driver. Now, do you really think I was stupid enough to tell the insurance company about that?!? Hell no. Why you ask?
First I get hit with the deductable (so they don't really "cover" the damages)
Second my rates go up (Oh goody that'll teach my to stop at a red light in front of some jackass on a cell phone)
Third, the resale value of my truck goes through the floor...because the insurance company reports it to carfax.

So WTF am I paying these people for? I fixed the damn bumper myself.

Investment companies, It's amazing how they manage to get filthy rich in the process of loosing other peoples money ain't it? Oh but they provided a service... Yeah a funeral service for your savings.

I could probably think of a few more, but the wife says it's dinner time. :)

app103

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Re: Too Stupid to Own a Computer
« Reply #13 on: November 12, 2010, 05:11:32 PM »
Of course anyone can, and most of us at some point in our lives probably have fallen for a scam, maybe not even that good of a one. But, I do think everyone is entitled to laugh when we see someone displaying such an extreme degree of stupidity and cluelessness.

But everyone has such a degree of stupidity and cluelessness about something. None of us knows everything about everything and never has a moment of weakness where we aren't thinking clearly.

Should I laugh at the holes in your knowledge? It's funny, right?

You know, when you don't know something, it can sometimes be hard to find people to trust. Often the people with the knowledge would rather laugh at you than help you...while others will take advantage of you and scam you.

That whole laughing thing keeps kids from asking questions in school...and keeps beginning coders that are struggling to understand stuff from asking questions of more experienced coders.

That whole laughing thing could also make your friends and family afraid to admit to you that they don't know something and need some help and advice, placing them right into the hands of the scammers that seem caring and sympathetic, while they take advantage of them and laugh about it later.

What happened to this guy is NOT funny!  >:(

Eóin

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Re: Too Stupid to Own a Computer
« Reply #14 on: November 12, 2010, 05:45:27 PM »
Should I laugh at the holes in your knowledge? It's funny, right?

To be honest, yes it usually is quite funny. If you're the type who will laugh at someone else messing up, then you have to be able to handle getting laughed at yourself.

For example you say everyone has a moment of weakness in which we're not thinking clearly, well yes that is absolutely true, but it's still funny. Now laughing at someone who is looking for help is a slightly different matter, nonetheless if someone asks a particularly stupid question then that too is very funny.

In the end of the day, I've laughed and been laughed at, and I think my life has been better and happier as a result.

Stoic Joker

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Re: Too Stupid to Own a Computer
« Reply #15 on: November 12, 2010, 05:48:50 PM »
Of course anyone can, and most of us at some point in our lives probably have fallen for a scam, maybe not even that good of a one. But, I do think everyone is entitled to laugh when we see someone displaying such an extreme degree of stupidity and cluelessness.

But everyone has such a degree of stupidity and cluelessness about something. None of us knows everything about everything and never has a moment of weakness where we aren't thinking clearly.
Quite true, however we're also not dumb enough to start throwing cash at a problem we don't fully understand.

Quote
Should I laugh at the holes in your knowledge? It's funny, right?
Might as well ... I do. Taking yourself too seriously is a sure fire way to fail.

Quote
You know, when you don't know something, it can sometimes be hard to find people to trust. Often the people with the knowledge would rather laugh at you than help you...while others will take advantage of you and scam you.
A question that isn't properly formed, can't be answered. It also deserves a chuckle or two ... Granted most of us will try to answer the question after regaining composure...But there are some things you just gotta let pass.

Quote
That whole laughing thing could also make your friends and family afraid to admit to you that they don't know something and need some help and advice, placing them right into the hands of the scammers that seem caring and sympathetic, while they take advantage of them and laugh about it later.
Well, if somebody made a habit of treating their friends and family like shit, and then felt guilty for it when they got scammed. I'd laugh at them too (it's a karma thing).

Quote
What happened to this guy is NOT funny!  >:(

Now if they scammed somebodies middle-class grandmother out of her life savings, then yes I'd say outrage was called for. But an oil tycoon loses 6 million - What's that like a nickel to the rest of us?!? - That's funny. He's got a flock of lawyers on retainer, security staff, business managers, etc., etc, etc. The man had some frigging options... He just chose to ignore them. Hence he deserves the scorn. :)
« Last Edit: November 12, 2010, 05:51:28 PM by Stoic Joker »

rgdot

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Re: Too Stupid to Own a Computer
« Reply #16 on: November 12, 2010, 06:43:20 PM »
Just because there is a product in the box doesn't mean it's worth (anywhere near) what you were charged for it, or any more than the box it came in.

Scareware, you get your product, you pay your money...fair deal right?

Insurance companies, Constantly try to over insure everybody for everything ... seriously, are you really worried that that many things might actually happen to you? I have full coverage insurance on my truck, because the bank says so... (hay that's a freebie example) I got rear ended by a hit and run driver. Now, do you really think I was stupid enough to tell the insurance company about that?!? Hell no. Why you ask?
First I get hit with the deductable (so they don't really "cover" the damages)
Second my rates go up (Oh goody that'll teach my to stop at a red light in front of some jackass on a cell phone)
Third, the resale value of my truck goes through the floor...because the insurance company reports it to carfax.

So WTF am I paying these people for? I fixed the damn bumper myself.

Investment companies, It's amazing how they manage to get filthy rich in the process of loosing other peoples money ain't it? Oh but they provided a service... Yeah a funeral service for your savings.

I could probably think of a few more, but the wife says it's dinner time. :)

I just wanted to say +1 to this
(I know I am not adding anything to the discussion, not for the first time either)

Renegade

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Re: Too Stupid to Own a Computer
« Reply #17 on: November 12, 2010, 06:48:17 PM »
@app103 - I think there's a very big difference between you getting scammed, and this fellow. $5,000 is something that we can relate to. Seeing you get burned like that strikes a chord.

But $6,000,000 isn't something that any of us can really relate to losing. It's so far removed from our reality that there's nothing to do but laugh. It's $6 million! Like holy murphy!

I've been burned for hundreds of thousands (not strictly a scam, but it's a long story), but that's still nowhere near $6 million.

For that amount of money you can build a bionic man~! :D
Slow Down Music - Where I commit thought crimes...

Freedom is the right to be wrong, not the right to do wrong. - John Diefenbaker

app103

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Re: Too Stupid to Own a Computer
« Reply #18 on: November 12, 2010, 07:09:00 PM »
But an oil tycoon loses 6 million - What's that like a nickel to the rest of us?!? - That's funny. He's got a flock of lawyers on retainer, security staff, business managers, etc., etc, etc. The man had some frigging options... He just chose to ignore them. Hence he deserves the scorn.

Jazz pianist and composer.

@app103 - I think there's a very big difference between you getting scammed, and this fellow. $5,000 is something that we can relate to. Seeing you get burned like that strikes a chord.

But $6,000,000 isn't something that any of us can really relate to losing. It's so far removed from our reality that there's nothing to do but laugh. It's $6 million! Like holy murphy!

I've been burned for hundreds of thousands (not strictly a scam, but it's a long story), but that's still nowhere near $6 million.

For that amount of money you can build a bionic man~! :D

Whether it's $6 or $6 million, I still don't find it funny when someone gets scammed because they don't know everything about everything and someone takes advantage of a gap in their knowledge.

Eóin

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Re: Too Stupid to Own a Computer
« Reply #19 on: November 12, 2010, 07:19:32 PM »
because they don't know everything about everything and someone takes advantage of a gap in their knowledge.

But the gap in this case wasn't really IT related, it was a gap in basic common sense. That can be funny, and it was here.

Shades

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Re: Too Stupid to Own a Computer
« Reply #20 on: November 12, 2010, 07:26:02 PM »
Please App, don't see this as an attack of some kind...I can see your point very clearly.

But if you can spend 6 million bucks on a problem like this when you are a jazz pianist and composer...it is very likely that he can rely on a (very healthy) trust fund of some kind.

6 Million, that would buy a whole lot of musical equipment and nice PC's...it should even have bought reliable advice and/or common sense as well.

It looks like I join the laughing crowd...just because of the shameful amount of money spent on the "problem".

app103

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Re: Too Stupid to Own a Computer
« Reply #21 on: November 12, 2010, 11:31:18 PM »
It looks like I join the laughing crowd...just because of the shameful amount of money spent on the "problem".

The "problem" was that his lack of computer knowledge made him an easy target for a scammer. That lack of knowledge made it possible to convince him that it was possible for an average techie in a pc repair shop to trace a computer virus to a hard drive in Honduras, and that in the process, they uncovered a plot to take his life. What is missing to this story is exactly what the money he paid was supposed to be for. I am pretty sure he wasn't paying $6 million for a simple virus removal. Seems more like he was a terrified guy that was doing whatever he thought he had to do to protect his life.

Maybe I don't find this funny because I live with someone that could easily fall for a variety of scams and I have spent the last 26 years of my life trying to keep him out of trouble, keep the snake oil out of our house, and keep our money safe... sometimes unsuccessfully.


Stoic Joker

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Re: Too Stupid to Own a Computer
« Reply #22 on: November 13, 2010, 07:58:54 AM »
Seems more like he was a terrified guy that was doing whatever he thought he had to do to protect his life.

Quite true, but if you ask anyone over the age of 5 who they would call if their life was in danger I doubt Tech Support is going to be at the top of the list of most common (sense...) answers...911 on the other hand...

Darwin

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Re: Too Stupid to Own a Computer
« Reply #23 on: November 13, 2010, 08:34:55 AM »
Two observations:

1. Where do people get the chutzpah to work a scam like this?
2. How on earth did the scammers justify the 7 figure fee to the victim? I mean, and I think this was partly Renegade's point above, how could anyone be convinced that rooting around on someone's hard drive is worth that much money?

I suspect it comes down to "saving his life"... I wonder, frankly, if what he is really trying to recover is not a fee but a reward?
"Some people have a way with words, other people,... oh... have not way" - Steve Martin

app103

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Re: Too Stupid to Own a Computer
« Reply #24 on: November 14, 2010, 07:29:54 AM »
2. How on earth did the scammers justify the 7 figure fee to the victim? I mean, and I think this was partly Renegade's point above, how could anyone be convinced that rooting around on someone's hard drive is worth that much money?

That's why I said it seems part of this story is missing.