Training for Scammers

We had another lovely phone call by a hard working young person (this time, a woman) with a rather un-placeable accent, asking for the owner of the computer in the house. You know the ones who call, telling you the computer has signalled to them there’s a horrible problem (there never is) and only they can help you (they never can).

It must be a successful racket, because they keep doing it.  Someone’s got to be taking the bait, and they must be raking in enough money to keep going, because even at sweatshop wages, it costs something to keep the call center going.

Okay, I’ll play along.

“For whom are you looking?”

The owner of the computer.

“What is the name of your company?”

Well, I couldn’t hear because of the bearpit type call center’s background noise, so I asked the nice young lady to repeat. Her response was

Oh My God.

At that point, I hung up on her, because I just didn’t want the usual (I’ve been called “full of $#!+” and a “b@$+@rd” for having asked the name of the company who wants my banking details).

But “Oh my God” is a new one.  I suppose she was on her first day of work as a scammer, and hadn’t really gotten the training down.  Goodness, they’ll hire anyone these days, won’t they? And they let them loose on the phones before they’ve taught them how to respond to basic questions in ways that don’t give the scamming game away.

“Oh my God” clearly gives away the illegitimacy of the call.  Because, although a household word (or really, a string of them), it’s not really a very good name for a company.

For those unfamiliar with the appropriate applications of the phrase, “Oh my God” has three uses:

1. Prayer.

2. Declaration of sexual ecstasy.

3. Expression indicating what you just heard/saw/encountered is not within the realm of natural and normal occurrences.

So, assuming I wasn’t the recipient of some weird form of outbound phone sex (I’d be flattered to think the second purpose had been fulfilled, but I doubt it), my guess is either purpose 1 or 3 was in play.

When you’re calling on behalf of a “business”, and the person answering asks you to repeat the name of that business, “Oh my God” signals you don’t believe the question was within the natural and normal.  Such disbelief tells me your “business” is not legitimate.

Really, scammers. We’ve gotten wise to you.  You need to develop better training.  The profanities I’ve had when you’ve called and I’ve questioned your legitimacy give you away as well, but “Oh my God” as a response to “For what business are you calling?” did it with record speed.  You’ve really got to teach people to sound like you’re an above-board organization even when you’re as sleazy as you are.

Unless, of course, you’re acknowledging my divinity.  In which instance, thank you–it’s nice someone finally has done.

Namaste, by the way.


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