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The 419message board was started by a South African antifraud officer to gather intelligence from worldwide combatants, while London's Metropolitan Police said it began a "coordinated approach" this month to get tips directed from baiter sites to proper channels.But investigators warn the counter-criminals are walking a fine line."People do it as a hobby or a part-time occupation," said detective Sgt.So-called 419 scams, named after the section of Nigeria's criminal code that covers the conduct, are the most common type of con; victims are sometimes left penniless.But Metimbers and crew turn the tables on scammers one by one, boomeranging the tricksters' own tactics to entice them into performing outlandish tasks in desperate pursuit of cash – then trumpeting evidence of the con artists' navet for the online world's amusement. Victims of these “romance scams” report they became involved in an online relationship with someone they believed to be a U. Soldier who then began asking for money for various false service-related needs.The most common scheme involves criminals, often from other countries -- most notably from West African countries -- pretending to be U. Soldiers serving in a combat zone or other overseas location.Other initiatives have also surfaced in the anti-scam resistance movement, including Artists Against 419, which kills criminals' online accounts with a deluge of traffic.
When impostor accounts are identified, it is important to report the accounts to the host platforms. It is important to know the warning signs of a scam or the common identifiers associated with an impostor account. If you receive a request from an account claiming to be a senior leader, report it. It is important to be aware that Twitter allows parody and fan accounts https://support.twitter.com/articles/106373.Such scams, when they involve dating sites, pose a unique challenge in the fight against impostors and identity thieves, because on such sites a dating profile is often required to conduct a search for fake accounts.That makes it difficult for organizations to monitor those sites for impersonators using a Soldier’s or key leaders’ information in a scam."We've seen our traffic from sites like these increase – that's been brilliant, but I could never condone some of their actions."And there are other concerns.Some have focused on the fact that most 419 scammers are black, accusing scambaiters of racism.
A 43-year-old, self-employed computer engineer from Manchester, England, Metimbers has most recently spun counter-yarns that have compelled 419ers to make elaborate wood carvings, pose for comical photos and fly from London to Scotland.