10 Strategies to report a scammer on the Internet
Strategy # 1: Write your report anonymously
5 Rules for writing a complaint properly
1 Do not attempt to represent a police officer unless you are a police officer.
Only the police department can issue a complaint with the term "police are looking for John Doe (example)." In general, the police send complaints when a person is wanted by the court for a felony charge and the person is hiding. However, it is against the law to represent a police officer. If you want to warn society of a particular scammer, do it, but just don’t use the name of the police in the complaint. You may also write the complaint anonymously.
2 Use the words "looking for" in the complaint only if you have lost contact with the scammer
If you are looking for the scammer because he or she has changed their phone number, address, etc. and you lost contact with them, then you can use the words "looking for" in the complaint. However, if you have already spoken to the scammer and he or she has refused to pay back the money they owe you, then there is no need to use the words "looking for" in the complaint.
3 If you have already spoken to the person who conned him and they refuse to pay you, then you can write a complaint to warn society
If a long time has passed and the scammer has not returned your money, you have the right to denounce him or her. Use words like "be careful" or "warning" in your complaint. These words are good because they can help warn the public about the scammer. It is legal to use these terms in your complaints as long as you are telling the truth and this way society is warned to beware of a particular scam artist.
4 Be honest
When denouncing a scammer on the Internet, you must be honest. As long as you’re telling the truth, you aren’t doing anything wrong. I would also advise you to not use profane language. Do not misunderstand me, I want justice as much as you do. But do not forget that we must never lose our dignity. Simply explain that this particular individual has scammed you and you are warning others to beware.
5 Be anonymous if you do not want the scammer knows you wrote the complaint
If you do not mind that the scammer may later find out that you wrote it, then you can use your real name. However, if you suspect that the scammer is a dangerous individual, it may be a better idea to use a fictitious name to protect your identity. Most scammers victimize many people, so most likely they will no idea who wrote the complaint, providing that you use a false (fictitious) name.
Here is an example of an honest, fair, and well written complaint exposing a scammer:
Warning: Never put your personal information in the complaint. If you want to use your real name that is fine, but never enter any personal data such as your home address. You can also choose to use a fictitious name if desired.
Example of a complaint on the Internet against a Scam Artist
Beware of scam artist!
I am a victim of a con artist couple, John Doe and his wife Jane Doe of Miami, Florida. Mr. John Doe asked me to let him borrow money for his business. He promised that he would pay me my money with an interest of 10% in 6 months.
However, it's been a year and he still has not paid me. Both of them have changed their phone numbers and contact information. In fact, they have disappeared. This is why I am presenting this complaint. John Doe and his wife Jane Doe have scammed me. I lost a lot of money. Be very careful with these people. If you have any information regarding these individuals, you can send it here: (your email goes here)
Since Mr. John Doe and his wife Jane Doe have defrauded many people, it is very likely that they are using fake names. For this reason, I have attached a picture of them to this complaint. If you see these people, be careful. They owe money to many people and are scam artists.
Tony, Miami, Florida
(Photo of scammer goes here)
Public Domain Photo
Note: Remember, you can always use a fictitious name, if you wish. If you were scammed by several people, but you only have the picture of one of the scammers, then use that picture. It is better to have one picture of a scammer than have no photo. In addition, you can always create a free email account under a fictitious name if desired. Two of the most popular websites to create a free email are: http://www.yahoomail.com and http://www.gmail.com.
This complaint is a good example of how to write a report in the most sincere and honest way. There is no need to use profane language. All that is needed is to inform the public. The point is to warn the public so that they will not become the next victims. However, you can’t block out the sun with one finger. A thief is a thief here and everywhere. The use of the word "scammer" is all fair since that is exactly what they are right?
Strategy # 2: Get photos of the scammer
Bernie Madoff is the orchestrator of what is considered one of the worst Ponzi schemes in history. Bernie Madoff was sentenced to 150 years in prison in 2009. He is currently in jail. For more information about the shocking story of Bernie Madoff, please visit:
Public Domain Photo
This YouTube video shows the shocking story of Bernie Madoff and the immense damage he did to society:
A complaint with a photo does more damage to the scammer than a complaint without a photo. Why? Because a picture is worth a thousand words. It is common knowledge that many scammers change their names constantly. This means that if don’t have a photo of the scammer, they can simply change their name they can continue to scam more unsuspecting people.
However, just one good image can expose any scammer even if he or she changes their name. Just one picture will do the trick. People will still be able to recognize a person by their photo. For this reason, you should try to find a picture of the person who scammed you. All you need is one decent photo of the scammer and you can expose him or her to the whole world. If possible, a recent picture is better. However, any photo is better than nothing.
If you were scammed by a business, you can use the photos of all the accomplices of the scammer. Everyone involved in the scam is guilty and should be exposed. If you do not have a picture of the scammer, try to find at least one photo. If the scammer is someone from your inner circle, try asking friends if they have a picture of him or her. Be careful when asking for a photo, you do not want to appear suspicious. Pretend that you are simply looking for a picture because the individual is very dear to you and you want to include them in your personal album.
If this does not work, then do a search on http://www.google.com/imghp (website for Google images) with the full legal name of the scam artist. You would be surprised how many public images are displayed on Google. If this does not work, make multiple searches on the popular social web site http://www.facebook.com with the legal name of the scammer and or using the scammer’s email address. You can also search for friends or acquaintances of the scammer on Facebook, as you never know if the scammer is on the friend list of one of your acquaintances.
If you find the scammer’s profile on Facebook, it's easy to snatch a profile picture. Just right-click on the image and click “save file as” and save it on an image folder on your computer. If none of this works, try to find out the origin of the scammer, what country or hometown is he or she from? Try to find out what high school the scammer when he or she was younger.
Many schools publish yearbooks when teens graduate. If you are able to find the high school where the scammer graduated, you can then try to acquire the online yearbook from someone who graduated from that school. Who doesn’t take pictures when they graduate from high school?
The image you are looking for may very well be in a high school yearbook. If in the end the scammer is embarrassed and he (or she) hates taking pictures (do not be surprised, many scammers hate pictures because this exposes them to the public) and it is impossible to find an image, then you can still file a complaint without the image. However, the complaint will not be as effective as a complaint with a photo. For now, publish your complaint, but in the future if you find a picture of the scammer, you can always add the photo to your complaint.
Note: A good tactic is to offer $100 or $50 to anyone who can send a digital photo (via email) of the scam artist. Money is always a good motivator if you need help. There are professional detectives out there who can easily snatch a photo of a con artist who is unaware.
Note: It doesn’t matter if the photo is physical or digital. If the photo is physical, you can easily scan in with a scanner and convert the image into digital format. Then, you can upload the image to the Internet. If you don’t have a scanner, no problem, there are many companies that have scanners and the cost is usually low. For example, Office Max and or Walgreens have scanners.
Strategy # 3 Use a public computer (optional)
This strategy is optional. You can always file a complaint from your personal computer. However, if you want to stay 100% anonymous, you can also use a public computer. Why? Well, personal computers can be tracked by computer professionals. However, this is very unlikely, but it is true that it is possible to trace a computer. However, in order to accomplish this, usually the individual needs to be highly specialized, such as a hacker.
However, by using a public computer, even if they trace the computer nobody will know who wrote the complaint. For example, almost all cities have several Internet cafés or public computers. If you publish the report in an Internet cafe, even if the computer is traced, no one will know you did it. Thus, if the scammer is a skilled hacker and decides to track down the complaint to find out who wrote it, he or she will end up in an Internet cafe. There will be no evidence of who wrote the complaint, and therefore the scammer will not be able to sue you for defamation.
However, note that it is very difficult for a scammer to win a libel suit, since freedom of expression includes truth and honesty. It is also very difficult for a scammer to trace a computer unless he or she is a highly qualified computer professional. However, some people prefer to do things in a way where they are 100% sure that the scammer will never find out they wrote it.
However, most people write the complaints on their own computers. If you're telling the truth, then you really have nothing to fear, even if they later find out that you wrote it. As the saying goes, "he who has done nothing wrong, has nothing to fear." However, today in this world in which we live, even bad people can hire a lawyer if they want and can sue anyone.
But just because someone sues, it does not mean that they will win. However, some people prefer to eliminate any unnecessary headaches, so for this reason complaints can be published anonymously and from a public computer.
Also, many websites dedicated to tackling scammers head on like http://www.ripoffreport.com have their own lawyers who fight against these spineless scammers who are trying to sue for defamation in order to hide their embarrassment of being exposed worldwide.
Why are scammers afraid of websites like http://www.ripoffreport.com and they try to sue to take down these websites? Scammers are very afraid of web sites like Rip Off Report, as these websites expose scammers for what they really are: charlatans. Who wants to see a picture of themselves exposing (calling them a “thief”) them to millions of people worldwide? Now they cry crocodile tears.
For this reason they have tried to take down websites like Rip Off Report but they have failed. The moral of the lesson is that anyone can sue, but what really counts is who is telling the truth. Many dishonest scammers have hired lawyers and have tried to close down websites like http://www.ripoffreport.com in the courts, but they have failed. Rip Off Report is still operating.
This is a victory for the freedom of expression and for the freedom to speak the truth! However, it is always good to know that you have the option of writing your complaint from an Internet cafe. Most complaints will only take about 20 to 30 minutes to complete. And most Internet Cafes charge about a few dollars per hour.
Strategy # 4 Complaints Board Website
http://www.complaintsboard.com/ is a website dedicated to helping victims of scams denounce people who scammed them. The good news is that this website is very easy to use. You can easily file a complaint with a business or individual who scammed you. All you have to do is go to the main website and click on “submit a complaint” button and fill out the form.
Before writing your complaint, read other complaints from people so you can get a good idea. As you will see, there are many people who write complaints about dishonest people and or businesses who have defrauded people. This is proof that you can take action and fight against these fraudsters. Hopefully more and more people will use this website for the public to be warned against unscrupulous individuals and or businesses.
Note: You can always use a fictitious name when you submit a complaint presented on the website: http://www.complaintsboard.com/.
In the next post I will continue with the other 5 strategies on how to expose a scammer on the Internet.
Until next time,
Until next time,