Scam Alert: Newbie Slot Tester Scam
This is an alert in that it is happening, although the scam itself is pretty old. I had first hand experience with this one as I ran around with a new alt. ( Will update with details when I get home and review my log)
Affects: Newbies & Junkyard/freebee place owners
Modus Operandi: The scammer approches a newbie who is picking through the junkyard or freebee area and asks if they will help them test a slots game. They then place the slots down near them and tell them to pay the machine.
How it goes down: This is simply a variation on the standard Game tester scam targetted specifically at newbies, who, of course don't know better. The scammer picks out someone very new, asks them to help them test a slot machine. They put the slot machine down, sometimes with several newbies present and several slot machines in the same place. The scammer tells the newbie to make a bet. The noob, not knowing about the game tester scam, pays the slot machine. The slot machine dings, makes noise, says things, and then claims the newbie won whatever amount they pumped into the machine, however, it never pays the newbie back. If asked about the money, the scammer will claim they never recieved it ( which is bull because you get the little blue box that says " paid scammy mcscammer 2L ") If pressed the scammer will give the newbie some freebee gestures claiming that they are worth a lot of money as 'compensation'.
Seeing through the Scam: Unfortunately, because this is targetted at newbies who do not know SL, or read this blog or even know about the Caveat Emptor group, they have no way to know whats going on. If you happen to be an oldbie strutting around in a shiny new alt and catch this sort of business, try to warn the people around you quietly and file an abuse report.
Damage control: The freebee yard owners should try to keep an eye and ear to the ground about this and either ban troublemakers or use autoreturn to prevent the scammers from putting their objects out. One could also disable rezzing on their land, but in the spirit of keeping newbies from getting frusterated, I could see how this would be problematic. Best to try to patrol your freebee zone as much as possible or hire some newbies to do it for you. :)
In this particular case, the slotmachine used was the Fairy Tale slot machine by Ryan Linden which I assume had been modified to prevent payout. The area where the incident I experienced occured was in YadNi's Junkyard, but it may be occuring at other freebee hubs or sandboxes. When I fetch my logs, I will name the perp so that he may be banned from newbie zones.