Spammers send out millions of emails, comments and messages every day in an effort to scam vulnerable people with real medical or relationship problems for large sums of money. Most people would probably never pay thousands of dollars to some stranger on the Internet for an unproven and untested “treatment”, so it is hard for many people to understand why spammers continue their efforts or why some people fall for it (especially when the language and spelling in these messages are often hilariously bad).
The reality is that it is enough if just 1 in 10 000 people fall for the scam for the spammers to make a profit. Making accounts and sending messages are almost always free, or requires a small investment for running different kinds of bots that do it for them. They target people at their most vulnerable and exploit sorrow and desperation. Most of their victims would probably never fall for it if they were not in this exceedingly vulnerable state.
Scams commonly used in emails include messages from some African rich person who needs you to send money to be able to take out a very large inheritance and they promise to give you a cut of it if you help them. Others involve offering expensive status symbols like Rolex watches for only a fraction of the cost or boosting sexual potency or virility of men. Other target people with terminal cancer by offering them alleged “miracle cures”, from intravenous baking soda to bleach enemas, that turn out to be scams. Others spread fear about common products and try to make you believe that you are sick so that they can sell you their fake “cure”.
Yet another common scam involves pretending to be some sort of shaman or spell caster and offering to solve all of your problems, from health issues to relationship conflicts, for a large sum of money. Debunking Denialism took a skeptical look at one such scam that wrongly claimed that spell casting cures HIV a while back. Although nothing in these spam comments is likely true, it is important to dissect them because some vulnerable people who are targeted by these scams might perform a Google search looking for more information. Skeptical treatments like this might give them a fighting chance. This article examines another such spell casting fraud, but this time for relationship problems.
Taking down another “spell casting” testimonial
Am here to testify what this great spell caster done for me. i never believe in spell casting, until when i was was tempted to try it.
Anytime anyone starts an argument with the statement that they are here to testify about something, you know it is based on an ideology and not a reasonable and evidence-based argument. This is because they have already made up their minds and are engaging in a targeted effort to spread their nonsense instead of being open to an honest exchange of ideas. Curiously, it is also a covert admission that their position has no real evidence, but merely testimonials.
A common trick is to portray themselves as skeptical individuals who did not believe in some ideology, fake treatment or service at first, but where convinced after experiencing the supposed benefits. This is an attempt to find common ground between the reader and themselves and make them seem more appealing and credible in the eyes of the reader.
This particular spam scammer even botches this simple psychological trick. They claim to never have believed in spell casting, but this did not change after some miraculous demonstration, but after the person was “tempted to try it”. So before the alleged demonstration took place and before any evidence whatsoever was in, the person changed their mind because of a mere temptation.
What was the problem that “spell casting” was supposed to solve?
i and my husband have been having a lot of problem living together, he will always not make me happy because he have fallen in love with another lady outside our relationship, i tried my best to make sure that my husband leave this woman but the more i talk to him the more he makes me fell sad, so my marriage is now leading to divorce because he no longer gives me attention.
If you are married and living with a man who causes a lot of problems, you might want to either find evidence-based methods to solve conflicts, or get a divorce and move on from it all. It is unclear what these problems are, but the husband has supposedly fallen in love with another woman. This is a clear reason for the wife to get a divorce.
If the husband is in love with someone else, chances are that their marriage does not have that much prospect. If you have tried talking about it without any success and communication only brings more sadness, then it is time to break it off. If he gives more attention to some other woman than his wife, it is time for the wife to leave him and not look back.
There is no reason to hold onto a failed marriage. Fight for things that matter instead. It might seem bad now, but there are plenty of other men out there that will treat her better.
What did this alleged “spell caster” claim?
so with all this pain and agony, i decided to contact this spell caster to see if things can work out between me and my husband again. this spell caster who was a woman told me that my husband is really under a great spell that he have been charm by some magic, so she told me that she was going to make all things normal back.
Instead of participating in couples counselling or marriage therapy, the wife decided to, out of the blue, get into touch with a spell caster. Is that not kind of like having car trouble and decide to contact a shaman to light some incense inside the car to “heal” the broken breaks?
This alleged “spell caster” tells the wife precisely what she wants to hear. Instead of saying the wife and the husband having grown apart, having conflicts and that the husband found love elsewhere, the alleged spell caster claims that the husband is somehow completely innocent and that it is this other woman who has cast a powerful spell on him. If the husband behaves in such a way as to make the wife feel constantly bad, it is the fault of the husband, not some magical spell for which there is no evidence whatsoever.
Like all scammers, this alleged spell caster makes you feel fear about some made-up problem (in this case, a supposed love spell) and then attempts to sell you the solution to all of your problems. This is just like those alternative medicine websites who spread fear about common household objects or safe food ingredients, while selling you expensive fake “treatments” at their website store. It is just a scam.
So what did this “spell caster” do exactly?
she did the spell on my husband and after 5 days my husband changed completely he even apologise with the way he treated me that he was not him self, i really thank this woman her name is Dr Aluta she have bring back my husband back to me i want you all to contact her who are having any problem related to marriage issue and relationship problem she will solve it for you. her email is [redacted] she is a woman and she is great. wish you good time
So the solution to a supposed love spell by the other woman is that this spell caster casts her own spell on the husband? One cannot help but wonder, if this “spell” supposedly works (and there is no evidence that it did), why did it take five days? There are far more likely reasons for the observed changes. Maybe the husband realized that he was about to lose his wife and realized that he loved her more than this other woman? Maybe he was a jerk who wanted to keep his cake and eat it too, like so many men who cheat insist that they will break it off with the other woman? There are several plausible explanations for the observed behavior and no need to postulate magical spells, neither for the husband falling in love with another woman or his apparent change.
Predictably, the testimony ends with the writer trying to get readers to contact this spell caster if they too are suffering from a similar issue. Equally predictable, the supposed spell caster is given the title of “Dr.”. This is a classic pseudoscience technique to parasitize on the credibility of academic degrees, science and medicine. It is also common for these spam scammers to only give out an email address. Since having an office or a website would leave traces behind that could be followed by law enforcement, it is much easier to handle everything by email. Unsuspecting victims who contact this “Dr Aluta” will likely be asked to transfer large sums of money that will then vanish and they will not get any real relationship helps.
Bottom line is this: spam scammers try to take advantage of very vulnerable people. Do not trust them, do not contact them and do not give them any money, no matter how much they promise. It will not solve any of your problems and you will be scammed out of a lot of money as a result. Find some evidence-based way to fix your problems instead.
What are some red flags to watch out for?
First, ask yourself if you are in a vulnerable state. Has anyone you love gotten sick and someone are promising a magical cure? Is your relationship in trouble and someone claims that they can fix it? Are you short on money and someone are giving you a highly profitable venture that has almost no risk? If you are in a vulnerable position, you are much more at risk for being exploited by scammers.
Second, does the message contain a ton of spelling and grammatical errors? Is the language quality of the message really poor? Chances are that it is a scam.
Third, ask yourself if this seems too good to be true. If it does, it is probably a scam.
Fourth, think about what the claims are. Is someone offering an alleged treatment that seems to cure all diseases? Then you know it will not work because diseases are highly specific, and so are effective treatments. Does a complete stranger claim to have the solution for complicated interpersonal issues? Chances are that they have no idea what is going on or how to fix it. If you, with all of your knowledge of the situation, has no idea how to solve it, why should a stranger who literally knows nothing about the situation be able to?
Fifth, does the cost match the product or service? If they claim to have psychic powers that you can benefit from for a small fee, why are they not regularly winning the lottery? If someone has a powerful treatment, why are they not patenting it and selling it to a pharmaceutical company? If they can solve all relationship troubles, why have they not been hired as a columnist by Cosmopolitan or some other similar magazine?
If it does not seem to make any sense, you can be confident that it is likely a scam. Avoid it at all cost.