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Scam n. (skam) 
- To swindle (someone) by means of a trick.
A scam is an unfair methods to trick another player out of items, gold, and/or their account. It is strictly against the Gaia Online Terms of Service and can be punishable by banning the scamming account and related accounts. The wide range of scams range from simple and obvious to clever and complex. Most scams involve tricking a victim in one way or another, although occasionally scammers will exploit flaws in the trade system, or even glitches in the game, to steal players' items.
Recognizing & Reporting scamsEdit
These are a few tips and suggestions on how to avoid scam tactics.
- First and foremost, the Gaia staff members will never ask for the passwords of users accounts.
- Keep account information secure. Only enter account information into the official Gaia Online website and refrain from telling anyone else passwords, remember-able hints, email address and recovery questions.
- If a deal seems too good to be true, it is probably a scam.
- If the person is obviously using a bot or mule to advertise, it is more than likely a scam.
- User should carefully check the trade window to verify which items are being traded.
- User can report an attempted scam by using the "Report" buttons located in Forums, Profiles, Areas, and Games.
The most common scams on Gaia involve items and gold. The major scams involve account hacking.
Below are a listing of the scams and how to recognize, avoid, and report them.
Users can be reported for attempted or successful scamming. However, victims of scamming (depending on the circumstances) may or may not have all their possessions returned to them. Victims could have their scammed account 'frozen' while investigations are happening with their account and these investigations could take months before any results are provided. The Scammers will have their account permanently inaccessible. This can include mule accounts and (depending on the seriousness of the situation) family accounts that use the same IP address. In likelihood, the Scammer may register a new account, however, their activities will be occasionally monitored by staff and in common circumstances their new account is subject to an instant ban.
This involves the act of using a 'hacked account' as the scamming mule. The scammer takes advantage of the hacked accounts Join Date and posting history as a way of gaining trust in potential victims. This account may be used to post phishing links or using various methods that such as asking friends of the account for trades, gold, or item collateral.
The Password scam is a scam where the scammer gains knowledge of a victim's password through a simple trick.
Main article: Phishing
Phishing is a form of scam designed to steal a person's personal information. This primarily involves the use programs that can duplicate Gaia Online's homepage.
These are password phishing pop ups that often appear in the form of a dialogue box that appears in the browser. In these pop-ups attempts, a user is requested to retype their username and password because their "session has expired" or "a session error has occurred."
This involves a scammer with a username containing authoritative titles such as: Administrator, Moderator, Developers, or NPC. With this in place they will contact their a victim a claim that the user's account will be undergoing investigation and it would require them to reveal their password.
Main article: Fake Egg
The actions of creating an image of an 'egg' during an Easter event and tricking scavengers into clicking on the image. While some images are simply images, others will have links which could lead to number of places.
Main article: 14/28g Post
A scam that attempts to convince a fellow poster that they can receive more gold by creating post with a large amount of text. Although not as insidious as any other scams, it is apparently annoying enough to render such posts a warn worthy and bannable offense.
This scam involved the Bank of Gambino's trading system. When two users (a buyer and a seller) agreed on a sum of gold to trade for a item, the scamming buyer would then reduce the amount of gold agreed upon which resulted in the seller getting a lower amount of gold for the item they put high value in. Gaia has resolved this by updating the trade system to require two confirmations as well as being alerted to any trades that are cancelled.
In relation to this the input bar for gold was increased in length due risk and reports about high gold trading and miss pricing.
Main article: Gold and Item Generator scam
This scam involves users being lead to a page the features an option of large sums of gold. Once a user selects what they want to receive, they are prompted to enter their Gaia username and password in order to receive the selected items. Another method is convincing a user that if they were to trade a low amount of gold to the scammer, that the scammer will return the gold twofold. (e.g 2,000 gold turning into 4,000 gold)
Similar to Gold Generator scam, the item scam involves users being lead to a page that features an option of expensive or rare items. Once a user selects what they want to receive, they are prompted to enter their Gaia username and password in order to receive the selected items.
Artificial inflation scamsEdit
See also: Inflation
When a user (or group of users) purchase a listing of the same item in bulk and then attempt to re-list the item at a higher price than what they were purchased for. In continuation with this, the bulk buyers make attempts to convince the average user(s) that they should sell their item for the price on the marketplace, only the buyer of said item is another user in on the scam. This results in the item being listed at a high value for a longer period of time so that the bulk buyers may benefit from the inflation.
Another method is contacting a user who has expensive items and convincing them to trade or sell for the items that were bought in bulk. The bulk buyer will hint that the marketplace can be checked as proof of the items inflated value.
Duplicate Items GeneratorEdit
Similar to Gold Generator scam, this involves users being lead to a page the features an pseudo-option of duplicating their most prized item by typing the name of said item. Once a user has done this they are prompted to enter their Gaia username and password in order to receive their duplicated item. Another version is ghosting an item and to prove to a victim that the duplicate generator works. And another version a scammer PMing the victim and persuading them trade or gift an expensive item so that they may duplicate the item for the victim, the excuse being that only they have access to the program.
Main article: Giftbox scam
The various methods involve the Gift System system or using a phishing site to imitate a Flying Giftbox. The gift giving scam commonly involves the scammer placing an invaluable item into a giftbox and PMing a victim to state that it contains a valuable item. They will either request a sum of gold or an item they have seen on their target for the giftbox.
This scam often involves two items having a similar appearance yet they have different currency or marketplace values. For example a common gold shop item being purchased for a large amount of gold because its resemblance to a cash related item.
Rare item grantsEdit
This type of phishing is often used in conjunction with a fake login page, a user may receive a link to what appears to be an item grant, only to find themselves seemingly logged out of Gaia Online once clicked. When they decide to 'log back in', they have unknowingly given their password and name to the phisher.
- Announcement Recognizing & Reporting Password Phishing - starzXnight Tue Aug 20, 2013 12:56 am
- Announcement Beware! Mobile Phone Scam - [NPC] Leon Wed Jan 08, 2014 5:28 pm
- Thread How to Report an Account Scammer! - bactine Thu Oct 13, 2005 12:49 pm