Hope Traders: Scammers

People Emptying Your Pockets: Scammers or Con Artists

Throughout the ages, people have sought ways to get rich through the easy way. While many people seek this easy way in accordance with the law, some have committed various crimes for this purpose. Let’s deal with such crimes not through violence and blood, but through examples of fraud.

Today, we all receive messages that we easily understand are fraudulent messages, sometimes in the form of SMS, e-mail, and so on. Maybe you have received a thousand messages from those who are supposed to be betting sites to the Nigerian prince made up. Although many of us claim that we do not fall for these, we inevitably become the tools of many other types of scams. In history, you can see that too many scammers have made unbelievable amounts of money and then disappeared. From the famous “Poyais” scam to Bernie Madoff‘s deceptions which cost hundreds of thousands of people hundreds of dollars, there are countless examples.

So How Do We Become Tools for These Lies?

The answer to this question goes back to the origins of capitalism. The main argument of capitalist thought is that man is a selfish and insatiable being. Because of this selfishness and dissatisfaction, they will never be able to live with what is given to them. For this reason, human is constantly chasing money, which is the current key to power. However, there is a problem that is that making money is not an easy task. At best it’s a good idea to shake up the market with very busy working hours to make decent money. But this is often a plan that doesn’t develop like that. Those who have a good idea may not have the funding or support, or may not be able to put the idea into action. If we take into account the busy working hours, today, no one who works for someone or works under an institution cannot earn enough money to be rich, which is one of the main problems of capitalism. There are always very large fishes swimming in the sea, and these fishes inhibit the growth and even survival of others.

Scam Methods 101

This is exactly why people gamble on believing the promises of scammers. Take, for example, the virtual currency market. Although there are many brands that do their job properly and legally in the virtual currency markets, there are also many that play with people’s dreams and money. Now let me show you these scammers.

Scam Man

Pump and Dump Method

There is a common problem with virtual currency and that is called “Pump and Dump”. In this system, scammers first persuade you to invest in a new brand using various incantations. For example, a well-spoken brand face tells you that if you invest in their own brand, you will earn twice the money you invested in a short time. In this way, people who believe this invest their money in that brand and raise the shares of the brand. Seeing that the shares of the brand are rising, other investors also invest their money in this hope, but in the end, the brand suddenly sells these securities and disappears with the money it earned. 


This is a scam method that you can often see in the virtual currency industry. For example, the “OneCoin brand is an example of this. The promise was that those who invested in the brand would receive twice the amount they invested. They opened offices and put on a corporate appearance when they suddenly disappeared and the people who had invested could not regain their money.

Ponzi Method

This system may seem more innocent than others. In the leading role, there is a person who speaks well and draws a reliable image. Being a charismatic leader is the golden ruler for a scam. Otherwise, people will not believe what that person says and won’t go after such a thing. Again, such a person is needed for Ponzi. This person persuades people to invest in their brand and paints the image that they will make money again. A lot of people deposit money and the money starts coming into their accounts just as it is said. But the problem is this: In fact, this incoming money is money from other customers. Some of the money John invests in the brand goes to Mark, so Mark thinks he’s making money, but in fact, all the brand does is sending false amounts to its customers with a simple scheme.


Legal Scams

Apart from these, there are many legal scams. They can sell you tons of useless products and ideas with false promises. For example, they say that a training or a book or a project will give you a great privilege and if you are involved in that project, then everyone will want to hire you, but the education you receive is not really valuable. In this case, of course, they will not defraud you and they have not committed a crime, but you will not get anything in return when your money leaves your pocket and goes to them. So in fact, there are certain common points in any fraud case. They promise you that they always give you the perfection. In this case, they paint the image that backlash is stupidity. As Michael Faraday said “Nothing is too wonderful to be true, if it be consistent with the laws of nature…“. Another common point is that they often paint an image of haste. There are only 200 seats available.” or Valid for this month only.” They actually trap you with the fear of regret of being late. When the masses are left in emotional states such as fear and excitement, their ability to make rational decisions decreases, and then these lies seem much more real.

Money With Magnifying Glass

Fraud is not going to end, but some of our ambitions are preventable. You can see that many people who set out to make easy money are broke for this cause. Unfortunately, scammers don’t always show themselves off with their idiotic ways like the Nigerian prince. Therefore, the better you know these methods, the better you can control yourself. Remember, if something is too good to be true, it probably isn’t.

References and Further Readings

Chen, J. (2021, July 7). Fraud Definition. Investopedia.

Pump and Dump Schemes. Pump and Dump Schemes | (n.d.).

Images not cited are used through Canva Pro with a royalty payment.

The proofreading has been done by Asu Pelin Akköse and Mete Esencan.

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Tufan Özdemir

Hello there! I'm Tufan Özdemir. I am a philosophy student at METU. Philosophy has been a big part of my life and my life. For this reason, most of my articles on this site are on philosophy.

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