The anatomy of written scam communications: An empirical analysis

Carter, Elisabeth (2015) The anatomy of written scam communications: An empirical analysis. Crime, Media, Culture: An International Journal, 11 (2). pp. 89-103. ISSN 1741-6604 (online)

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This paper examines the interactional construction of written scam communications. It draws on an empirical corpus of 52 envelopes containing letters and leaflets designed to deceive recipients into parting with their money or personal details, and presents the analysis of eight extracts in illustrating the findings. This research draws on interactional methodologies to provide in-depth insights into the underlying techniques used in scams, and to identify a wider framework that accommodates and facilitates their effect. It explores and exposes what elements of the scammers’ communicative efforts are enlisted and directed towards the performance of particular acts such as inferring legitimacy and credibility, and inspiring urgency and secrecy. These elements combine to perform a range of highly effective communicative acts that, although the communication is mass-produced with no knowledge of the recipient other than a name and address, result in the exploitation of their individual vulnerability in a highly personalised manner.

Item Type: Article
Divisions: ?? BucksNewUniversity ??
Depositing User: ULCC Admin
Date Deposited: 15 Apr 2015 16:31
Last Modified: 11 Dec 2017 19:17

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