Even the most cynical people have fallen prey to a well-concealed scam, and it can be both embarrassing and eye opening to look back on the red flags that were easy to miss.
While the general public has grown a lot more savvy when it comes to scammers, and their many tricks, the scammers themselves have created new traps to lay out. So, the game of cat and mouse continues.
If you want to keep your alerts sharpened, reading stories of other people's experiences with scams is a good way to go.
There was a company advertising that they would help people wipe out predatory student loans. Long story short I blew $800 on a company that got shut down by the Gov't for fraudulent practices and was denied a refund.
I wouldn't say I fell for it but while walking around Tokyo I was stopped by this monk who explained that he was traveling the country on foot and asked for a monetary donation. When it was clear I'd help him out, he pulls out a money book and shows me what people generally give him and to write my name down next to them along with the money amount. It was full of big numbers clearly going into the hundreds and thousands of dollars. It's implied that I should match those donations otherwise I'm clearly not a good person.
Realized it was an immediate scam, and a very obvious one.