My name is David Modic, I am a post-grad researcher at the University of Exeter. I have been researching Internet scams for a decade.
At the moment, I am interested in what, if any, personal characteristics make someone more likely to be scammed.
My previous research has shown that there is a lot of confusion in the general population about scams - in general, many seem to believe that being scammed is somehow the victims' fault. I disagree - many people who use Internet have been in contact with scammers and, I believe, most of us have been taken in by scammers at least once at some point in time, making the idea of blaming the victim unfeasible (to put it mildly). In addition, chalking being scammed to simply being the cost of business while working on the Internet is too jaded and doesn't really help. I believe that there are ways to stem the tide of scams by understanding them and helping people prepare for the onslaught. First step in this process is to understand what mechanisms scammers (perhaps unwittingly) employ to snare us. Once we understand that, we can work on disabling those mechanisms.
For this purpose, I have constructed a survey that will help me better understand how to uncover what scammers do and decrease their effectiveness. I am not naive, I know that there will probably always be scammers and people who get taken, but I want to make it more difficult for scammers to succeed.I was hoping that you can help me with that
. Here is the link to the survey: http://survey.scamresearch.info//index.php?sid=43356&lang=en
I will, in exchange for everybody's help share some of the results of the analysis, right here. I see this as a win-win situation. You, gentle readers, help me with my data gathering and in return, get to find out first hand what the results are. And also what they mean. I will probably have the preliminary results in about a month. When I say some of the results, I mostly mean that I won't bore you with minute details of factor analysis and multiple regression equations, I'll just tell you what I got, and what I think it means.
Just two more things:
1. You are completely anonymous. I have no interest whatsoever in finding which individual answered what. I am not logging your IP and the raw data collected will not go anywhere but to my server and later into my stats package.
2. Before I posted, I have had a few discussions with Shawn and got the permission to post. This is neither some spur of the moment thing, nor some thinly veiled marketing campaign.
Your help would really be appreciated - the more people answer the survey, the better my chance to understand what is going on.
I sincerely thank you for your help.