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When the call center employees are not being hired to close the deal on a romance scam, very often they are used to assist in bank account takeovers, redirecting packages with shipping companies, or handling fraudulent new credit applications that require phone verification.

Another reason that call centers aren’t used earlier in romance scams: Hiring one is expensive.

The call center pictured above charges $10 per call, payable only in Bitcoin.

“If you imagine the cost of doing by phone every part of the scam, it’s rather high, so they do most of the scam via email,” Holden said.

Virtually every aspect of cybercrime has been made into a service or plug-and-play product.

That includes dating scams — among the oldest and most common of online swindles.

We know that criminals are: The criminals try to make you believe that they can offer you something very easily, such as a visa for the UK, or that there is a problem with your application or visa.

They will try to make themselves seem very genuine and may use language that sounds official.

The vendor of the fraud package advertises a guaranteed response rate of at least 1.2 percent, and states that customers who average 30 scam letters per day can expect to earn roughly ,000 a week.

The proprietor also claims that his method is more than 20% effective within three replies and over 60% effective after eight.

“Working with dozens of possible outcomes, they carefully lay out every possible response, including dealing with broke guys who fell in love online,” said Alex Holden, the security expert who intercepted the romance scam package.

“If the mark doesn’t have money, the package contains advice for getting him credit, telling the customer to restate his love and discuss credit options.” Interestingly, although Russia is considered by many to be among the most hostile countries toward homosexuals, the makers of this dating scam package also include advice and templates for targeting gay men.

Recently, I had a chance to review a package of dating scam emails, instructions, pictures, videos and love letter templates that are sold to scammers in the underground, and was struck by how commoditized this type of fraud has become.

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