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Outsmarting the Scam Artists

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A practical guide to avoiding the most common scams, from a fraud-fighting expertU.S. consumers lose billions of dollars each year... Weiterlesen
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A practical guide to avoiding the most common scams, from a fraud-fighting expert

U.S. consumers lose billions of dollars each year to scam artists—and the next victim could be you. While anyone can be targeted, many victims are older. In AARP's Outsmarting the Scam Artists, renowned fraud-fighter Doug Shadel offers practical advice for consumers who want to protect their money as well as the financial assets of their parents and families.

Despite the rise of scams, many people are embarrassed to admit they've been victimized. The author helps break the cycle of shame by including accounts from the people who've been scammed as well as tips from a surprising source: convicted con artists who reveal how they've defrauded people like you.

  • Get practical tips to combat all kinds of scams, from simple lottery tickets to non-existent oil and gas deals and religious ponzi schemes
  • Learn how to protect yourself by securing your mailbox and fraud-proofing your trash
  • Get inside the head of sophisticated scam artists to discover how you can become the type of individual they avoid

Scammers are everywhere. But with Outsmarting the Scam Artists in hand, you can protect yourself and your money.


Doug Shadel (Seattle, Washington) is the Senior State Director of Washington's AARP, and a leading expert on fraud schemes and the elderly. He actively pursues researches fraud and recently co-led a three-year U.S. Department of Justice/AARP Foundation study. This effort was the first to document prevention strategies that dramatically reduce victimization. Dr. Shadel has been honored with a number of awards for distinction and service, including AARP's Agent for Social Change Award (2007), the Federal Law Enforcement Officer's Association Citizen's Award (2002), the FBI Director's Award for Exceptional Public Service (2000), and the California Department of Justice Citizen Award (2000).


Praise for Outsmarting the Scam Artists

"Outsmarting the Scam Artists takes the playbooks from a dozen colorful villains and turns them into an entertaining and easy-to-read tutorial on how to protect yourself from fraud. A terrific, readable book!" Jane Bryant Quinn, financial writer and author of the bestsellerMaking the Most of Your Money Now

"Are you into The Grifters and Spenser? Do you cherish Raymond Chandler? This is a nonfiction treatment on 'the con' industry that deserves a place in the mystery bookstore; beyond that, it's a primer on how not to get conned yourself."Paco Underhill, author of the bestseller Why We Buy

"Time after time when I was attorney general, I saw heartbreaking stories of people being scammed out of savings by sophisticated con men. In today's digital age, it's smart for both older Americans and their families to verse themselves in the topic with a book like this."Christine Gregoire, Governor, State of Washington

"For over a decade, researchers have been trying to understand how con men get consumers to hand over their hard-earned money. This remarkable book combines findings from behavioral science with the con men's own stories to bring us provocative new insights that can greatly reduce the chance of being victimized. It is a must-read for everyone interested in protecting themselves or joining the fight against financial exploitation." Laura Carstensen, PhD, Director of the Stanford Center on Longevity and author of A Long Bright Future: Happiness, Health, and Financial Security in an Age of Increased Longevity

"Outsmarting the Scam Artists does something remarkable, providing a simultaneously insightful, informative, and engaging account from the front lines of deceptive persuasion. For their protection, I want everyone in my family to read this book."Robert B. Cialdini, author of the bestseller Influence: Science and Practice

"Outsmarting the Scam Artists offers a fascinating look at how fraud schemes work from the perspective of the cons who perpetrate them. These veteran fraudsters offer up secrets about who they target, what tactics they employ, and how you can inoculate yourself from harm. Anyone whom cares about his or her own financial security will benefit from reading this book."Gerri Walsh, President, FINRA (Financial Industry Regulatory Authority) Investor Education Foundation

Acknowledgments ix

Preface xi

Part I The Scam Artists' Playbook

Chapter 1 Inside the Con Artist's Mind 3

Chapter 2 Ether: The Con Artist's Central Strategy 19

Chapter 3 The Stages of Fraud 29

Part II Con Artists in Action

Chapter 4 Exploiting Ego: The Oil-and-Gas Scam 49

Chapter 5 Exploiting Faith: The Religious Ponzi Scam 63

Chapter 6 Exploiting Fear: The Gold Coin Scam 77

Chapter 7 Exploiting Boredom: The Movie Scam 85

Chapter 8 Exploiting the American Dream: The Business Opportunity Scam 93

Chapter 9 Exploiting Hope: The Lottery Scam 107

Chapter 10 Exploiting Credit: An Interview with an Identity Thief 117

Part III How to Fight Fraud

Chapter 11 Who Are the Victims? 129

Chapter 12 Become a Fraud Fighter 145

Chapter 13 Fraud Prevention That Works 159

Appendix A The Fraud-Vulnerability Quiz 173

Appendix B Fraud-Prevention Resource List 177

Notes 181

About the Author 185

Index 187


Titel: Outsmarting the Scam Artists
Untertitel: How to Protect Yourself From the Most Clever Cons
EAN: 9781118227022
ISBN: 978-1-118-22702-2
Digitaler Kopierschutz: Adobe-DRM
Format: E-Book (pdf)
Herausgeber: Wiley
Genre: Betriebswirtschaft
Anzahl Seiten: 208
Veröffentlichung: 03.02.2012
Jahr: 2012
Untertitel: Englisch
Dateigrösse: 3.0 MB