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Ever wish you could somehow get back at scammers who email you? Now
there's a way.
New Zealand-based cyber-security firm Netsafe created an artificially
intelligent email bot dubbed Re:scam, which is designed to imitate
victims and waste the time of scammers.
"Re:scam wastes scammers' time with a never-ending series of questions
and anecdotes so that scammers have less time to pursue real people,"
Netsafe wrote in a blog post. The company said Re:scam will "continue
the conversation indefinitely – or until the scammer stops replying."
Re:scam can take on many different personalities and engage with
"infinite scammers at once," Netsafe wrote. It will even make typos and
jokes to spice up the conversation and seem like a real person.
In response to one Western Union scam, for instance, Re:scam wrote back
"Are you talking about real money? Because if so then you certainly have
my attention. What do you need from me?" The scammer then instructed the
would-be victim to wire $73, and Re:scam replied asking whether "Chevron
petrol vouchers" are an acceptable form of payment. After going back and
forth several more times, Re:scam finally messages the scammer saying:
"My Grandad asked me to email you for him because he's slow at typing
and gets easily confused. He told me it's super important. What do you
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