scams

Akihabara’s shady art salespeople surprisingly adhere to state of emergency guidelines

Eulien: Covenant

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Saucy invite from lonely woman/online scammer has Mr. Sato filled with desire to do one thing

When a stranger sends him a friend request, our reporter sees the opportunity to relieve his explosive, pent-up emotion.

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Heroic Japanese convenience store owner saves foreigner from online scam artist

Foreign teen’s unusual behavior tips off quick-thinking 7-Eleven owner.

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Our reporter ran into one of Tokyo’s pushy flag-selling foreigners

A tap on the shoulder leads to a flag in the hand and a request to pay for it.

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Foreign travelers in Tokyo, other towns handing out flags, asking Japanese people to pay for them

Sellers often claim to be deaf and ask for random Japanese people to “sponsor” their travel expenses.

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How much private info can a thief glean from a stolen smart phone? We investigate

Our resident scam investigator turns criminal to see how much information he can steal from a stranger’s smart phone.

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What happens when you answer one of those sketchy social media comments offering easy money?

Our reporter decides to answer one of those “Earn money from your photos!” comments on his Instagram page.

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Japanese arcade owner arrested for allegedly rigging crane games to be unwinnable

Japan’s first-ever crane game fraud investigation claims arcades used secret setting so prizes could only be won in employee demonstrations.

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Otaku woman in Japan finds herself target of strange fake shoplifting scam, netizens urge caution

Never let anyone you don’t know look through your bag, regardless of where you are.

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An epic tale of pornography, revenge, alcohol, and pumpkins.

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Our writer intentionally gets himself caught up in an online phishing scam—for science!

Our reporter goes undercover to see what happens when you voluntarily give your information and credit card info to Facebook spammers.

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Confessions of a professional Japanese dating site female impersonator 【Interview】

What’s it like to dupe lonely Japanese guys and get paid to do it? We talk to someone who did just that.

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From shady trash collectors to “compensated dating” – 5 crimes peculiar to Japan

Japan is often perceived as a safe country. The nation of 127 million people boasts some of the lowest rates in the world for serious crimes such as murder, robbery, and rape. In addition, Japan continually ranks high on the Global Peace Index. And while it may sometimes seem like stalking and crime against children is rampant in Japan (the stalking rate hit a record high of 22,823 this year, up from 21,000 in 2013), this perception comes largely from widespread media exposure. In the U.S., for example, it is estimated that 6.6 million people are stalked per year.

While serious crime may not rank as high as in other developed countries, there are plenty of the other offenses that Japan excels at, and the country has its share of unscrupulous nationals. These are the things you probably haven’t heard so much about. Today we look at five crimes, some of them strangely Japan-specific.

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Our Japanese reporter offers up some safety advice for anyone traveling to Southeast Asia

‘The other day, I felt a tap on my back while at a Japanese-style shopping mall in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. I turned around and there was a beautiful, wide-eyed woman smiling at me. She asked me a favor in broken English: “I don’t have any friends in this city, and I’d like to hear more about Japan. Won’t you get dinner with me?”

I was surprised at myself by my cold reaction–“Ah, not another one.” Despite my efforts to ignore her, she continued pestering me, this time asking how long I was planning to stay in Cambodia. When I responded, “I’ve lived here for over 15 years, she promptly disappeared with a creepy cackling noise.’

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