Can Recognise A Scam in Any Language

, , , , | Legal | February 20, 2019

(I work in a warehouse in Norway. I am doing my usual rounds when suddenly my cellphone rings. I notice on the caller ID that it is a very long number from a foreign country. I answer and, lo and behold, it’s a “your Microsoft Windows has a virus” scam. I am somewhat multilingual; I speak Icelandic and Norwegian, can scrape together Danish and Swedish, and have the bare basics in German. I also speak English, of course, but I decide the unlucky SOB has called the ONE person in Norway who doesn’t speak a word in it.)

Me: *automatically speaking in Norwegian* “Hallo, this is [My name]”

Caller: *very foreign accent but speaking English* “Hello. I’m calling from Microsoft because we have detected a virus on your computer.”

Me: *realizing what it is, does not switch to English and continues to speak Norwegian* “I’m sorry? I don’t understand you.”

Caller: “Ah, do you speak English?”

Me: *switches to my mother tongue, Icelandic* “Is this English? I’m sorry; I don’t speak English.

Caller: “English. Do you speak English?”

Me: *in my absolute worst Danish* “I’m sorry; I still don’t understand you.”

(I quickly whisper to my Danish coworker nearby what is happening and they nearly fall down laughing.)

Caller: “ENGLISH! DO YOU SPEAK ENGLISH?!”

Me: *pretends like I’m thinking about it, then exclaims in utter joy, in my bad German* “Deutch? Ja, ich sprechen Deutch!”

(“German? Yes, I speak German.” He hung up for some reason.)

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