Why Smart People Get Scammed

Why Smart People Get Scammed

It is not unusual to hear stories about people falling for scams. But when we learn about an Ivy League-educated friend falling for an investment scam, we question their sensibility and intelligence. If a sophisticated aunt gets sucked into a Ponzi scheme, we immediately wonder if they are too proud or weak to say no. When a sharp-witted neighbor falls victim to an online scam, we respond with judgment.

It is hard for us to understand why smart people get scammed and deceived. They are the ones who are supposed to be well-informed and quick to detect something that is too good to be true. Many of us rely on smart people to make good choices especially, in terms of finances and investments.

Reasons Smart People Get Scammed

Social media scams and frauds become more prevalent because of the high number of users. The Federal Trade Commission reported that a total of $770 million was lost due to social media scams in 2021.

Scammers use the names of experts.

One thing scammers, fraudsters, and con artists have in common are they use the names of experts or influential people in promoting their schemes. The names they often mentioned are prominent and intimidating. They drop names of experts in the field, celebrities, or business moguls. They use them as bait to lure people to invest and provide money.

Some scammers describe themselves as experts by enumerating their impressive education and skills or showing off their certificates and diplomas. They want to show you that they have the authority and qualifications to endorse these investments and businesses.

It is someone you know or trust.

The most painful thing about smart people getting scammed is knowing that it is done by the people you know for years and have earned your trust. In a way, you think that by investing or purchasing their products, you are helping them. You listen to these people and allow them to promote their investments and businesses in the hope that it will make their lives better.

Scammers know that you are kind-hearted and unwary to people whom you know. Then, they use this to their advantage to skim your money. Sometimes smart people are scammed not because they are gullible and dense but because of the goodness of their hearts.

They are attracted to high financial gain.

Smart people get scammed because they become lenient in reaching for their dreams. It is not wrong to be ambitious and want to succeed fast. But sometimes when something is offered that promises high gains and profits, it is hard to pass up.

They say that if it is too good to be true, then it probably is. You may have this at the back of your mind but you just want to take the risk and see what happens. Scammers are smooth talkers and they will go to extreme lengths to convince you to shell out some cash.

Smart people can be vulnerable.

Just like everyone, smart people can have their vulnerable moments especially, if they are offered something they are knowledgeable about or interested in. Investors and businessmen are more prone to fall for investment fraud. Gamblers are more susceptible to lottery scams. Hopeless romantic people are easily preyed on by online dating predators.

Scammers and fraudsters start by taking small steps in getting to know you. They slowly build up their stories by getting to know your name and your birthplace and saying that they have been born there too. This way they can easily win you over and in turn, you learn to trust them.  They are good at making you feel special by offering exclusive opportunities to grow your wealth.

Fear of missing out.

Smart people get scammed because they are worried that they will miss out on an opportunity that could be the “game changer”. Scammers often offer that certain opportunity for a limited time only so there is a big chance that more people will be drawn to it.

Scammers tell you to invest this amount and since you are special, they are giving you a discount for one day only. Of course, you want to grab this chance before the day ends thinking that you have saved big bucks. This is just one example of their many deceptive tactics.

Overcoming Trauma after Getting Scammed

The Federal Trade Commission revealed that 2.8 million consumers became victims of scams and fraud in 2021. The most common cases are imposter scams and online shopping scams. People who have been duped in various fraud categories are greatly affected emotionally and mentally. This is something that is not easy to get over especially if you have invested too much money and time already.

Shame, anger, guilt, anxiety, and depression are just some of the things you feel after learning about your bad experience. You do not know how to cope with all of this and how you can move on. Despite the unpleasant circumstance, do not let it overpower your mental state.

Mindshift Psychological Services provides counseling and therapy sessions for those who want to recover the trauma and embarrassment from scammers and fraudsters. It may not be an easy journey to take but trust our process in ensuring that you will be okay.

Visit our website for more information about us. You may also contact us at (714)584-9700.