SOME OF MY BEST friends fall for scams. They know about how to squeeze money from investments. Some live alone. It turns out that they are susceptible to fake lotteries, bogus holidays and other scams. Despite the fact that one in 15 people lose an average of EUR 1500 each year, the psychology of scamming has been neglected as a subject of psychological study. But now, the University of Exeter is releasing in-depth psychological interviews with victims, including some surprising conclusions.
A "lack of emotional control" makes some people too impulsive.
A degree of isolation, by not sharing their investment decisions, opens people to scams.
Nearly 20% is deemed vulnerable to being scammed, because they are serial victims.
Office of Fair Trading -- "The Psychology of Scams" (260 page PDF)