At Digital Awareness UK we're always keeping our ears to the ground to understand how technology and artificial intelligence, in particular, can be used to deliver advanced learning solutions. So it’s been fascinating to see how technology is being utilized in the war against scammers.
Each year scammers defraud millions of people, and you may have seen a few scams coming through on your emails and texts lately. These scams are on the rise with criminals exploiting the pandemic and the increase of people working from home. In the first six months of 2020, there was a 66% increase in reported scams. But digital vigilantes or scam baiters as they are better known are tackling scammers head-on. Scam baiters are individuals who make it their business to scam the scammer. Typically they contact fraudulent helplines and pose as characters who intentionally test the patience of the scammer. Wasting the time of the scammer is the prime goal of these digital vigilantes. For every scammer held up by a scam baiter, there is one less scammer defrauding unsuspecting individuals.
So where does artificial intelligence come into play? Scam baiters have turned to artificial intelligence to create bots that respond to the questions of scammers and who will ultimately lead them on a wild goose chase. Using speech recognition and realistic-sounding voices, the scammer is met with colorful characters who make absurd requests and play along with the scam. This is until the scammer realizes that they are talking to a bot.
Videos of these conversations have flooded TikTok thanks to their ridiculous nature and humorous AI bots. If you didn’t see the BBC's feature on Kitboga, a viral scam baiter sensation check it out here