#012 - Scamming the Scammers - How Scammers Innovate /w Jim Browning

Show Notes

Episode Contents


In this episode I talk to Jim Browning and cover some of the following topics:

  • What types of scams there are, how they work and how my guest fights back,
  • Why fighting scammers isn‘t as fruitless as you might think,
  • How my guest infiltrated a large-scale technical support scamming operation that was then aired on the infamous BBC documentary „Panorama“, leading to international press coverage and arrests,
  • What the underlying business model of these scamming organizations looks like and how lucrative this business really is (spoiler: it‘s staggering!),
  • Where most of these scams originate from and who their victims are,
  • What some of most creative and dumbest scams were that my guest has encountered,
  • How scamming organizations have evolved over the last decades and how they are innovating and embracing new technologies,
  • How to effectively combat scamming and better protect yourselves from being scammed,
  • What type of mindset one needs to have in order to have success in the scamming industry.




Fraud itself has been around for as long as humans existed. I believe the first recorded instance comes from 300 BC, in Greece, when shipping merchant Hegestratos changed the world by attempting to con the insurers of a shipload of valuable goods by sinking his boat but keeping the cargo, and claiming the loss anyway. Or in 1920s where we saw the first Ponzi scheme, a form of investment scam carried out by Charles Ponzi whose name it takes it‘s name or Identity Fraud and Cheque Fraud were also prevalent in the 1900’s. One very famous example being Frank Abagnale Jr, who had over 8 identities including an airline pilot, a physician and a lawyer. This story was made famous by the movie ‘Catch Me if You Can’.

One thing to always keep in mind is that scamming like any other business (except for the fact that it is illegal), in that these scamming organization innovate and change their business model according to new trends or changes in their environment, like we see now with Corona scam emails. Scammers have a very strong incentive, as it’s financially very lucrative to scam people out of their money and have no qualms about targeting old, innocent and often helpless people. So always be on the lookout.

Here are some tips to better protect yourself and are generally considered best security practices. Most of these are tips are or should be well-know:

  • Use and enforce safe password practices least 16 characters, use at least one number, one uppercase letter, one lowercase letter and one special symbol. Do not use the names of your families, friends or pets in your passwords, just to name a few.
  • If you find that too cumbersome, use a respected Password Manager such as Lastpass, 1Password of Dashlane and refrain from using dodgy or suspicious looking ones. Keepass is also another good alternative, which happens to be open-source as well.
  • Enable 2FA on all accounts that have it (Authy can help you consolidate these into one app and sync them to all your devices as well as create a backup)
  • Ideally use a hardware 2FA key such as Yubikey
  • Challenge callers that are requesting any kind of personal information with security questions of your own. “What are the last 3 digits of my account number?”
  • And most importantly, be sceptical as Jim mention in the interview, along with using common sense. If something sounds too good to be true (like getting an unexpected refund), then it almost always is.


Now, most of these recommendations might not be new to you, but not your grandparents, who are not as tech-savvy as you are. So feel free to share this podcast episode with them or share Jim’s YouTube videos with them. Because awareness is key.


Links & Resources Mentioned


Links Mentioned


Articles Mentioned


Videos Mentioned


Companies Mentioned


People Mentioned


Follow/Add the Podcast Host/Guest on:

David C. Luna:  LinkedIn | XING |

Jim Browning: LinkedIn | YouTube | Twitter

Have feedback or recommendations for topics or guests?
Let us know, by filling out this short form here.

Follow GAMMA Digital & Beyond on

#012 - Scamming the Scammers - How Scammers Innovate /w Jim Browning      #012 - Scamming the Scammers - How Scammers Innovate /w Jim Browning      #012 - Scamming the Scammers - How Scammers Innovate /w Jim Browning      #012 - Scamming the Scammers - How Scammers Innovate /w Jim Browning     #012 - Scamming the Scammers - How Scammers Innovate /w Jim Browning

#012 - Scamming the Scammers - How Scammers Innovate /w Jim Browning

This podcast looks at innovators and companies that are changing the game and how they took their initial idea and created a game-changing product or service, while giving you unique perspectives and insights you’ve probably haven’t heard elsewhere.

David and his guests discuss real-world practical advice on how to best harness the creativity of your employees and go from idea to product or service that has the potential to radically transform your business.

They also share lessons they’ve learned along the way to effectively accelerate, incubate and scale innovations within small, medium and large enterprises, all while separating hype from reality and replacing bullshit bingo with common sense.

The show is hosted by David C. Luna, author, keynote speaker and founder of GAMMA Digital & Beyond.

#012 - Scamming the Scammers - How Scammers Innovate /w Jim Browning #012 - Scamming the Scammers - How Scammers Innovate /w Jim Browning  #012 - Scamming the Scammers - How Scammers Innovate /w Jim Browning#012 - Scamming the Scammers - How Scammers Innovate /w Jim Browning   #012 - Scamming the Scammers - How Scammers Innovate /w Jim Browning

Creative Commons License

The Innovational Correctness Podcast by GAMMA Digital & Beyond, David C. Luna is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License. Based on a work at gammabeyond.com/en/podcast/. Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available by contacting us here.