The Book

flatcover250The Con: How Scams Work, Why You’re Vulnerable & How to Protect Yourself

The Con is an insightful, revealing look at scams, why they work and how we can avoid them.

  • How do you protect yourself against the dangers of a pigeon drop? Or rocks in a box?
  • What precautions can you take to avoid the perils of spear phishing and pretexting?
  • Just what is a suckers list and how do you make sure you’re not on it?
  • Includes only scams that are current and in wide circulation.
  • Contains engaging, relatable stories of ordinary people from all walks of life targeted by scams.
  • Examines the psychology of why scams are successful.
  • Provides up-to-date information on recovering from identity theft.

Written in a narrative style, the book goes behind the scenes of real-world cons to examine the logistics and psychology that enable scams to succeed. The goal is to help people understand and recognize deception, and in the same way that they avoid other potentially dangerous situations, take a detour.

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Reviews:

“Career magician and identity theft expert Munton teams with writer McLeod to deliver this fascinating, informative, and highly entertaining primer on the various ways the uninitiated may find themselves ripped off by a con artist.”
Publishers Weekly

“Magician and experton deception Munton, abetted by writer McLeod, goes behind the scenes to present stories of ordinary con victims to dissect how scams are perpetrated and the elements and tactics of typical cons. Completely fascinating and insightful.”
Booklist

“James Munton is a magician who’s performed several times at the White House, and is now a speaker on the subjects of identity theft and data breaches, while Jelita McLeod’s journalistic background includes stories for the Washington Post and National Public Radio. That blend works well, since so many cons are much like magic tricks, with sleight-of-hand and misdirection, and it takes a reporter’s skill to really dig into why they succeed. Understanding how cons work, why they prey on basic emotional needs, and what can be done to stop them are all vital in boosting protection. This compelling work goes a long way toward putting distance between scammers and their prey.”
ForeWord Reviews

“This is the best book about scams I have ever read. It is a wake-up call for all those who think they can’t be conned. The compelling stories show how real-world cons unfold, why they work and what we must do to protect ourselves. An essential and entertaining guide to spotting and avoiding scams in everyday life.”
Julieann Dimmick, Attorney, formerly of the Office of the General Counsel, Enforcement; US Department of the Treasury

“This book is a must read. Well written, informational and entertaining, it is full of interesting stories that drive home the number and variety of scams in operation, how intelligent people fall for these scams and how to protect yourself. There were scams that I had not heard of even after being in the security business for over 15 years.”
Marta Zaricznyj, CEO and Security Consultant, Znovation, LLC

“It is unfortunate but in my 20 years in law enforcement I can recall many of the same victims’ stories as told in The Con. James and Jelita have provided historical and statistical information with actual accounts of these frauds through the victims and suspects perspectives. These victims’ stories along with the tips and resources can help raise awareness and hopefully help individuals prevent or recover from these ever prevalent crimes.”
Michael B. Dana, Financial Crimes Detective, Dallas Police Department

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