Image by Muhammad Ribkhan from Pixabay
It would be difficult to get through a single week without encountering a scam of some kind. Be it a phone call, some kind of advertisement, or an internet wild goose chase, they're everywhere.

Luckily, many of them have been publicized and discussed enough that we know how to avoid getting got.

But one time or another, every scam was new and, as a result, probably more successful.

It was with that imagination that Redditor RandallFlagg217 asked:

"What's the greatest scam of all time?"

Some people talked about the scams that take advantage of uniquely important life events or ceremonial rituals.

Dying is Expensive

"Funerals. Charging $10,000+ just to put someone in the ground is crazy." -- DeathSpiral321

"I've told my wife 1,000 times just like put me in a cardboard box that you get from Giant or Target and just get a sharpie and write RIP and have my dog mark his territory on it so no demon dogs will bother it." -- SYLOK_THEAROUSED

The Ring Racket

"Okay - I've been told stories about this and it gets over looked all the time. Engagement Rings. The thing is - it's incredibly easy to get ripped off for a ring that isn't nearly worth the price. It's also easy to get scammed into a 'payment plan' if you know what I mean."

"If you're considering buying a diamond, you need to go to an ACTUAL jeweler, and someone that specializes in it. Please don't go to the mall for it, you could get scammed."

-- geturown_choccy_milk

Paying for the Name

"Anything that costs more because 'wedding' is in the description. We asked for an engagement cake (but to use it for a wedding) and it was 1/3 the cost." -- Iwannascream2

Others took "of all time" more literally. They looked back into history to find the greatest schemes ever.

The Godfather of the Con

"That dude who sold the Eiffel Tower twice" -- The_Weirdest_Cu**

"Victor Lustig!"

"I'm pretty sure he sold 'money-duplicating boxes' to rich a**holes too, and then they couldn't go to the authorities when it ended up being a grift because they'd have to admit to a) attempting counterfeit and b) being a total dumba**" -- SlainSigney

Before Scams Were Cool

"The trojan horse" -- CDR_Arima

"Well you see, it wasn't a peace offering at all." -- TymStark

And It All Came Tumbling Down

"Bernie Madoff." -- CuplaThreeThings

"From a financial perspective, easily. I'm an accountant so I'm pretty well studied on Bernie Madoff and that whole thing. Incredible. He beat the market by a good margin basically every year. Your investment was a guaranteed zinger with Madoff. Investment managers at some of the larger retirement firms were going nuts, wondering who his inside source was or where he was getting his information. Some people even thought he was the financial Nostradamus."

"Nobody except a few dissenters who suspected it from the start (and were quickly silenced, naturally, because nobody likes jealousy) even for once thought it could be fraud. And the worst kind of fraud, too. A ponzi scheme? No way."

"Yeah, maybe people on Reddit are like'"oh, boo hoo, a $10 millionaire lost $2 million,' but the truth was, a lot of normal people lost nearly everything they had to him. People who were writing retrieving early, or in retirement taking payments, or people switching their 401k with $500,000 in it to him and watching the fortune they worked for most of their life just go away overnight and remained that way for awhile, even if Madoff eventually gave a bunch of it back." -- betterthanamaster

And a few people remarked about the scams that invade our daily lives over and over and over. You're sure to find these relatable.

Go On, Press It

"The biggest DOWNLOAD link on a website. Getcha every time." -- ReadReadReedRed

"literally uninstalled a barcode scanner app for that exact reason. you scan the barcode, it shows a URL and then below it says 'OPEN' Clicking the URL is what you need and will take you to the barcode address. clicking open will open a fu**ing advertisement." -- rocket___goblin

Monopolies

"inkjet printer cartridges" -- javacoffeecup

"A while back I went to office depot to get ink. I ran out of black and the cyan color. They had a printer on sale that was cheaper than the ink I had to buy. It's crazy" -- JayaParrs

Oh, Well What Are The Chances

"Actually I've been trying to reach you about your car warranty." -- Anonymousgirl_90

"Huh I just listened to a few voicemails about my nonexistent car" -- RandumDoggo

A Fun Scam

"Lotteries" -- CalliCosmos

"Naw, they're just voluntary taxes!" -- zeek0us

"Meh that fleeting 'what if' feeling is worth $3 every once in a while." -- DrCubSker

As time wears on and scammers are forced to devise new methods of conning people out of their cash, there's no knowing just what insane ideas will one day be added to this list of the greatest ever.

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