I was recently in a conversation that brought up cash baiting. Let me first explain what cash baiting is. It’s essentially baiting a scammer into sending you money. The person that does it may keep it or donate it to charity. Either way, cash baiting is wrong. I’m sure I’ve covered this before, but let me explain again.
The main issue with cash baiting is that the scammer isn’t the one sending the money, nor is he the one losing out due to it.
Remember that the scammer (or scammer group) isn’t only working one person at a time. We know this as a fact due to our interactions with them. Let’s call the baiter (or person who “scams the scammers” as the media love to refer to them as) A. The scammer, we’ll refer to as B. Finally, a victim totally unrelated to the interactions between A and B we’ll call C. A asks B for money as part of “scamming the scammer”. B spins a story to C, coming up with a sob story as to why they need money and asks C to send A money. They claim that A is working for them in some capacity, so any money they receive can be collected by them. A receives money, but it’s been sent by C and not B. B hasn’t lost a single red nickel. When C realises they’ve been scammed however, whose details do they have? Not B’s. Whose money does A actually have? C’s. When C goes to the police, whose details do they have? B’s? Nope. A’s? So now “scamming the scammer into sending me money” becomes “taking money off a victim, who can only point law enforcement my way”. See the problem? A, in trying to mess with B has become a criminal by receiving money from C. Not such a cool thing to do now, is it?