The Newest Phone Scam

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Would you buy something from, or donate money to, a computer posing as a human being? Well, you would if you were balmy.

The newest thing in scam artistry is the robo-call disguised as a live human. It is a disguise that would only fool another robot, but they think it’ll fool you. Well, hey, we twice elected Obama president: I’m sure they’ve taken that into consideration.

It goes like this.

ROBOT: Hello–Joanne?

MAN: Nobody here by that name, you have a wrong number.

ROBOT: Oh, that’s all right! I was calling everybody in your neighborhood anyway…

Here the person usually hangs up. But now I think I’d like to continue the conversation and see what happens.

PERSON: Is this about the murder?

I want to see how the robot is programmed to handle that. What do you want to bet it doesn’t say “What murder?”

ROBOT: Our records show that you have stayed at our resort, Bedbug Manor, twice before and are qualified to receive our one-time only Satisfied Customer Discount…

By this time you gotta be clued in: you are not talking to a human being. You should either hang up or leave the phone off the hook where your cat can get at it, while you move on to some other detail of your daily life.


About leeduigon

I have lived in Metuchen, NJ, all my life. I have been married to my wife Patricia since 1977. I am a former newspaper editor and reporter. I was also the owner-operator of my own small business for several years. I wrote various novels and short stories published during 1980s and 1990s. I am a long-time student of judo and Japanese swordsmanship (kenjutsu). I also play chess, basketball, and military and sports simulations. View all posts by leeduigon

One response to “The Newest Phone Scam

  • Linda Sorci

    It’s apparently called Artificial Intelligence for good reason 🙂 Fear not, though, they’ll be working the bugs out soon enough so the durned things will be able to carry on ‘intelligent’ conversations. Scary stuff!

    We had a call the other day from some entity wanting to speak to the person who pays the electric bill. What? Why, do you want to pay it for me? I simply said ‘stop calling this number’ and hung up, whereupon the durned thing immediately called back.


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