Email Scams Increasingly Involve iTunes Gift Cards

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Email scams are increasingly involving iTunes gift cards, instead of the old wire transfers. Lily Hay Newman as the scoop.

This trend is on the rise among scammers, both for individual targets and organizations. The Federal Trade Commission reported in October that 26 percent of people who report being scammed in 2018 said they bought or reloaded a gift card to deliver the money, up from seven percent in 2015. The FTC says that gift card-related losses reported to the agency totaled $20 million in 2015, $27 million in 2016, $40 million in 2017, and $53 million in the first nine months of 2018 alone.

Watch This Video of an AI Wasting Email Scammers' Time

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This may be the best thing I’ve seen all year. It’s a promo video from NetSafe for their new service, Re:scam. It’s an AI-powered chatbot designed to do one thing and one thing only: waste the time of email scammers, Nigerian princes, and fake UN bureaucrats trying to scam us through email. It does so by engaging with them on your behalf. All you have to do is forward an email from a scammer to me@rescam.org, and Re:scam commences operation LOLHOWSITFEEL. That’s what I’m calling it, at least. The chatbot then uses a proxy email address to engage with the scammers, drawing out the exchange for as long as possible. It’s not only deliciously funny, the premise is that by wasting these scumbags’ time, they make it increasingly difficult for them to profit from their slimy endeavors. [Via Digg]