McAfee, the well known internet security provider, have recently released a report which details the psychological methods of the scammers behind all those advance fee and phishing type emails we all receive in our inboxes on a regular basis.
The study, entitled “Mind Games” and written by Dr Blascovich, gives an insight into how the scammer utilises their potential victim’s greed, fear and lust in order to encourage them to engage in their ruses and then, ultimately, give up their finances or financial details.
From the report –
“Scam spam works best by providing recipients with a sense of familiarity and legitimacy, either by creating the illusion that the email is from a friend or colleague, or providing plausible warnings from a respected institution,” Dr. Blascovich noted. “Once the victim opens the email, criminals use two basic motivational processes, approach and avoidance, or a combination of the two, to persuade victims to click on dangerous links, provide personal information, or download risky files. By scamming $20 from just half of one percent of the U.S. population, cyber criminals can earn $15 million each day and nearly $5.5 billion in a year, a powerful attraction for skillful scam artists.”
If you wish to read “Mind Games” the full report is available online at: http://www.mcafee.com/us/threat_center/white_paper.html