Recently, I borrowed some of your interview question to interview myself. I feel that it’s very helpful in determining some of the events that occurred during the past on neopets.com such as the reasoning of what caused outside URLs to be blocked. Please read my interview.
Q. How long have you been scamming on Neopets?
About three and a half years. (Late 2001.)
Q. Why did you begin scamming on Neopets? Were you a once-victim or did you fall on it for the sheer thrill of scamming?
Just as any player, I too began playing the virtual website and began to realize how entertaining it was too me. Moreover, I began spending more and more time on the website and thus became a neopets-addict. One day, I discovered a glitch for the Fruit Machine Gamea simple refresh and youd win a prizeeasy eh? Well, this of course caught up with me, and I was frozen. Sad, but willing to still play the site, I created a new account. Just as any player might do, I began searching the wiz for any low-priced such as battle weapons, paintbrushes, –basically any catch I could get. One day, I searched the wizard for a Blue Paint Brush for an unusual price of 2 nps. Hard to believe that after entering the shop, the item was there, I clicked the item, and was led to a fake-login page. I wasnt familiar with fake-login pages, so I entered my login information and was led to Pet Central. Unusual, I figured that the staff must have logged everyone off the site. I went to my inventory only to discover that the item I attempted to purchase wasnt there, and concluded I was too little too late. I went on to say, Ill try my luck next time. Moments later, I was logged out of my account and attempted to log-in, etc. etc Eventually realized that I was scammed.
Imagine how pissed off I was at the scammer. But this scammer changed my life dramatically. I checked my history to find the URL to that webpage, and studied it very hard. And it finally hit me, –how dumb can I be not to realize that I was being scammed. I edited, tested, and finally created a new fake-login from that persons webpage to my own. I logged into a side account of mine, and placed a certain html in my shop which causes the image in my shop to be linked to not an items purchasing address, but instead to my website which was the fake-login page. Finally, I purchased a real item, yes a *real* item that I had to pay for, and put it in my shop for about 12nps. I believe it was a Main Codestone. I was astonished at the amount of people that literally feel for the scam and was amazed, shocked, and saddened at the same time.
I became a scammer, and a seriously addicted one too.
Q. Do you think about how upset the people you scam are?
Not as often as I should have. And to be honest, you guys say how evil scammers are and how heartless they are. In fact, they are just blinded by greed and tend to not realize whom they are effecting. It took me over three years to realize what Ive done and how much Ive regretted it.
Q. What methods have you successfully used in the past?
Fake-login page, cookie stealing, cheating programs, glitches to my benefit, etc.
Q. Approximately how many people have you scammed?
To be honest, I only scammed 10% of the accounts I gained access too, but logged in nearly single one them. This was because either a majority of them were worthless, they changed their password too quickly, or I felt sorry for them (Yes, I have a heart). I made about sixteen fake-logins a month for about three years and each login was used frequently until either the site was taken down as a request from Neopets to my webhost, or I reached my limit of scammed accounts for that fake-login (which was 600). Anyhow, from every fake-login I gained about six-hundred login information total. Lets do the math: (16 fake-logins) x (Approx. 26 months when added because of breaks, etc.) x (Approx. 600 accounts per fake login)=249,600 So, I gained access to about 249,600 accounts logged in nearly every single one, but only scammed about 10% of that which means that I scammed about 24,960 accounts from fake-logins. Basically I scammed about 920 accounts a month. Talk about no-life.
Q. Is scamming all its cracked up to be? IE is it difficult for you to scam? How much do you make per scam? How much have you scammed in total?
Scamming isnt worth it you guys. As much as an expert you claim you are, you eventually get frozen for some bizarre reasoning such as multiple accounts or using programs to cheat, etc. And this is because when the staff review your account, they do not know how you acquired the money so quickly without actually earning it and only could freeze you as a result. (yes, they research these things) Now, if youre good with your wording, you can waddle out of it, but these days, there are just too many people frozen for the same reason, and getting your account back with a reason such as that is considered to be a waste of time or in other words, a permanent frozen account.
Scamming is fairly easy but mostly time consuming. I made anywhere from about thirty million a month. I could estimate that I made over seven-hundred million nps from scamming, but this is only the total. That amount was split into three different accounts of which I use to own, but now are frozen. Where did I use these nps? I spent them on upgrading my shop to the marketplace and stocking my shop. My first account I created was about a size 500, which was frozen and its stats erased. Now all I had to do was neomail staff to reupdate my shop size, but I didnt know that was an option at the time. Instead I thought it came with the responsibility of being unfrozen and starting over. I then went on to upgrade the same account to 800 sized-shop (frozen for using a program to cheat). I started over. On my second account I reached 1,100 (frozen for using a program to cheat). I started over again. My final accounts shop was 1,400 (frozen for using multiple accounts). I quit trying.
Q. If a person was to become a scammer, what advice would you give them?
I greatly suggest you dont become a scammer because of how badly it could effect your future. I mean look at what happened to me for example. I was going through this awkward phase where all Id do was scam, and then scam some more. I literally wasted my time on scamming for three years.
But, for those that have wondered, what was that exactly got them frozen even though they planned carefully [take it from an expert that made it far-enough]. Just take a look on my rules to scamming:
– Every single item in the scammed account stays in the account. If you are going to scam at all, scam strictly on neopoints only. Making a newbie or rather unlinked account to your main account as your neofriend from a stolen account and then transferring items to that account is very very stupid and obvious. Neopets reviews these transactions every single day. Even with greed you can see that scamming the items is only going to get you frozen right away. Now I know items can be very valuable, so what I personally did in this case was sell/trade the item for neopoints but at a very low price but reasonable price.
* If you havent realized by now, I scammed strictly on nps. Forget the items.
– Do NOT use the Trading Post to transfer your nps because this like item transferring will only get you caught in a matter of time. Instead upgrade a shop to withhold a ton of items and price them at a variety of prices. This shop is currently the main location where all the nps that you scam are being transferred. So instead of creating an entirely new account or using an old account of your own, use a newbie account that you scammed (usually the very first one that you receive information for), but changed the password and email so the person scammed cant regain access. And also, make sure that this account is in no way similar to those that are being scammed such as the IP, cookies, computer type, etc. I suggest using an entirely different computer with a different connection. I know its awkward that you are putting so much trust into this newbie account, but it pays off eventually.
Just to clarify – you need 5 computers with IP anonymizers to even consider scamming:
* You are using Computer A to set-up the html to put in your shop.
* You are using Computer B to log-in ALL of the stolen accounts.
* You are using Computer C to log-in ONE stolen account that is in no way relevant to the other computer you are using.
* You are using Computer D to log-in ALL of the scammed accounts.
* You are using Computer E to withdraw your till, delete your shop history, and send the nps from the ONE stolen account to your main account.
– The actual scamming (Part One): Use Computer B to quickly login every stolen account and storing how much this person has in their account. I simple went to the bank, posted the amount they had in the bank along with the password and username in Microsoft Word, then continued to the next account until eventually I received no more information because staff froze the account I have the fake log-in in.
– The actual scamming (Part Two): I used Computer D to login the information I stored in word, or in other words, the accounts that were actually worth something. Now, in all of my computers, I had an IP anonymizer which wouldnt allow the staff to see whom I was exactly. Although many people purchase IP anonymizers (like me) people in locations such as China have computers that hide the IP Automatically when purchased. So anyways, I basically logged in these accounts with Computer D, purchased the items in my MAIN stolen account and that was basically the end of it for that session.
– The result: I keep doing this until I reached about 600 stolen accounts. Then I deleted the website, and create a *new* fake-login elsewhere, and repeated these steps over as a new session with of course renewing the MAIN stolen account and the bate account as well as the actual computers I was using so it wouldnt get traced back to me.
Q. Do you not think of total banning from Neopets?
Simply use a different computer in that case ;).
Q. Do you like the game Neopets or just the sheer thrill of scamming?
The games were fun, but its very hard to get a high score, or at least for me it was, so that was one of the main reasons I gave up on games. Also, they were a bad source of income and provided little to none.
Q. Is your scam success ratio higher than scam failure ratio?
Scamming was nearly always successful for me. Usually the accounts that either changed their password in time only had about 1-2million which I could regain easily from continued scamming but always added as a loss. But there was one person to my astonishment that had about 25 million in their bank but changed their password in time. I couldnt believe they even feel for the fake-login. ;).
Q. Has scamming taken you into more under-belly research such as hacking?
Not really. Its fairly easy to make a fake-login. Just study it, and youll master it;).
Q. Would you ever consider becoming ‘clean’?
I already did.
Q. Have you ever befriended a person and then scam him/her? If so, why did you do it?
Ive hacked enough all for the price of greed.
Q. Over time, has scamming become more difficult for you due to more widespread knowledge about this?
Well of course. Staff became familiar with fake-logins, and at first they simply frozen the accounts that tried to use them. Afterwards, they became blocking certain features. We couldnt use the .com, .net, .org, etc. feature in shops others that the domain Neopets, so I temporarily stopped because staff figured a way to stop us scammers. And it seemed that Neopets was safe once again. But I believe that I was the person that actually brought it back again. I redirected the fake-item url to go to an error page on my petpage (which was at neopets.com domain — which worked and even produced better results. I guess this was because people thought they were safe, or maybe because of the growth of players, or maybe even because of the lack of fake-logins during the time meant more of a gain for me… Still remains a question to me.) But anyways, this caused the person on the petpage to click a link which said The item you are trying to purchase has changed in price from 12 nps to 13 nps. If youd like to continue your purchase, click here to proceed. (This seemed a little less believable to me, and I didnt expect it to produce good results, but it did really well. This feature too was blocked allowing all non-Neopet domain containing the extensions .com, .net, .org, etc. to be blocked everywhere on the neopets.com website). I then began using redirection URLs in my shop which contained for example: http://continue.to/item_purchase and I guess this wasnt read by the computers because it obviously worked. Anyhow, this feature transferred to the fake-login page as well; same effect, but a little less believable from my perspective because of the flickering, but worked just as fine. Yet moments later, staff blocked this feature all around the site, and thus resulted that no member can link to outside neopets.com websites including guilds, petpet pages, shops, as well as everywhere else on the site.
In addition to this, staff caused the html that was used to attract players from the wizard to not work at all.
Now I figured that Neopets prevented every possible way to use the fake-login in shops: We couldnt use outside URLs and the html for attracting users from the wizard was useless. I gave up on scamming, but later came back and figured out a way to continue the history of the fake-login on Neopets. I edited the html hiding the entire bottom part of the shop and creating my own, including the tiny piece at the bottom of the site that contained terms of service contact us etc. This looked way better, removed the little x that appeared next to the items, and was more believable to me. But there was still one major problem, I couldnt link outside sites. Eventually I found a neopets.com redirection URL which originated from the McDonalds Happy meal advertisements on the website. I simple edited the URL to where itd link to my website instead and put this with the newer html that was in my shop. Worked for a few logins, but eventually was fixed.
And thus, I had no way to attract people from the neopets.com website to my fake-login which to me, was the end of fake-login scams.
This doesnt mean that you cant be fooled. There is tons of sites claiming you can get free items by entering your information. Tons of people using search engines fall for these too, but they just dont produce profiting amounts. (Mostly newbies.)
Even though I stopped scamming, I still used the account I built a strong empire off of from the fake-logins, quite often and earned money from their on fairly which is why I lasted a bit longer than my previous accounts. But eventually this too was frozen and now I just wander on the site from time to time, checking on the richest of my time, to see if they are frozen too.
Btw, Sorry you guys, I think you came blame me for the blocking of outside URLs.
Q. You mentioned that most of the scammers PPT featured could not spell. Do you think that these scammers are amateurs and disgrace the name of scamming? Are the majority of scammers like this?
Im not the best speller. Im sure I made a couple of mistakes here and there. But come on, some scammers spell like elementary students. In fact, a majority of them DO spell like this. Scamming is a disgrace in itself, but at the very least, scammers can learn to spell. Do everyone a favor
Q. Doesn’t having your account frozen after scamming deter you from more scamming?
It only determines you more to try harder and to prevent yourself from getting frozen again. Well thats basically what convinced me to keep going. And just to clarify, Im not Alombar42.
Q. Any additional information youd like to add?
The scamming I listen above, and the process Ive used is useless. Staff blocked the major parts of it, and therefore its useless. I suggest you dont waste your time on even attempting to scam. It always backfires on you, youll regret it even if you claim youre a heartless person, and you will waste the most time you have ever waste in your whole entire life. Neopets is a game, no need to take it seriously. Instead go play a game of pool and prove youre the best for being you rather than using somebody elses hard earned money.
In response to your previous question: What methods have you successfully used in the past? My response was: Fake-login page, Cookie Stealing, Cheating Programs, Glitches to my benefit, etc.
This whole interview is merely my fake-login scams which I used throughout my time on neopets. But, I have used Cookie Stealing ONCE, but didnt steal anything in that persons account. It was merely for my curiosity to see how wealthy this person was.
As for cheating programs, I used a program that cheated on games which allowed me to have the highest score every time, which too is blocked. Glitches include the April 4th attack which allowed people to get anybodys password by entering their usename in the Forgot Password box, the Fruit Machine, and certain other events.
There you go! Thats just about everything I did on neopets.com.
But the research and information I gathered off the site and acquired from others is another story.
If anyone has any questions feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org