Skip to main content

Featured

SE'ing Encyclopedia

Updated: 10/11/2021:    If you've ever wanted to know every term and method relative to social engineering, Irrespective of your level of experience, then you've come to the right place. This SEing encyclopedia, has everything you need pertaining to common terms and methods that're used In today's world of exploiting the human firewall. All topics Include a brief description, as well as a few examples of how each term Is used In a sentence- which will be of benefit to those new to the SEing sector. To help refine your search, I've added a table of contents, whereby you can pick and choose exactly what you're looking for. 

Proof Of Purchase

 


Why A Proof Of Purchase Is Requested And How To Bypass It.

There's no doubt that social engineering companies for refunds and replacement Items, can be an arduous task at the best of times, particularly when "representatives work strictly by the book when assessing and processing claims". As an SE'er yourself, you never know for sure If that will happen with your SE at the time, thus to help ensure It moves In a positive direction with minimal disruptions, It's crucial to take the time to perform your research by (but not limited to) checking the company's terms and conditions, and then selecting a method based on your (researched) findings, as well as applying It to the Item you're planning to SE.  

That's basically how It works when hitting online stores to the likes of Amazon and Zalando, and of course many others. You need to know what you're dealing with, so the two key elements to prepare your attack vector are "research" and "Item and method formulation" and only when you've finalized their preparation by covering every angle and leaving no room for error, will your SE be ready to execute. Now you may be thinking of the time when you hardly put any effort Into your SE and your claim was Instantly approved, and rightly so - the rep/agent was probably half asleep on the job or It was his last day at work, and "couldn't care less about following protocol"

But that's not what social engineering Is all about because If It was, you'd be SEing left, right, and center without any Issues whatsoever and furthermore, this entire blog would be nonexistent. What I am referring to, Is the steps that reps take when evaluating claims, and the requests made to yourself (the SE'er) to move forward with their assessment, of which a "proof of purchase" Is part of the equation. For one reason or another, SE'ers of all shapes and sizes are (to some degree) Indecisive as to how to respond when asked for a proof of purchase, and many have difficulties trying to circumvent the need to provide one. Rest assured, I will cover all that and a lot more, but first we'll have a look at what a proof of purchase entails "In a social engineering environment".  

What Is A Proof Of Purchase From An SEing Perspective? 

It's pretty much common sense that when you buy something online or In person at your local mall, a receipt will be given with your transaction, so there's no point In stating the obvious - that'll be a waste of your time and mine. However, from an SEing standpoint, a "proof of purchase" (that's mostly abbreviated by SE'ers as "POP") Is not as easy as giving It to the representative, and having your account credited or a replacement Item dispatched - namely because "you don't have the Item to begin with". You see, as opposed to buying the product first and then using any of the traditional methods like the DNA, wrong Item received or the missing Item method, some SE'ers simply don't have the cash upfront, hence they need to pretend that they've bought It and have the POP In their possession.

As a result, other methods can be used that allow them to put In a claim by solely using the POP to manipulate the rep/agent, or (where applicable) use It together with an Identifiable part of the Item such as Its serial number. Don't worry, this will make perfect sense as things move forward. SEing In this manner, Is perceived to be problematic due to the fact that the SE'er doesn't pay a single dime for the Item, therefore "does not have a proof of purchase on hand", but by no means does It suggest that the SE cannot succeed - It can and It will, but only when you have the skill set to bypass the rep's request to supply It! I've discussed a few ways on how to do It towards the end of this article for the reason that It's crucial to know the Ins and outs of each method, and how & why they (at times) trigger a POP, so without further delay, let's rip Into It.     

Methods Used With A Proof Of Purchase:

Before I begin, I'd like to reiterate that "you're not buying the Item and SEing It thereafter", but rather deceiving the customer service rep Into believing that It was purchased from them, and you'd like a refund or replacement for any reason that's compliant with their terms and conditions. But to do that, "the product must still be under the manufacturer warranty" and what typically happens next, Is that you'll be asked to provide a POP - just so they can verify that the Item you're SEing, does In fact belong to them. Depending on the company, they may also ask you to return your product or request a POD (Proof Of Destruction), but for the purpose of this guide, I'll be purely focusing on a "Proof Of Purchase". If you're Interested In how to avoid returning your goods, read my tutorial here. Okay, let's checkout the methods that (tend to) trigger a POP as per the subtopics below.

The Serial Number Method

As said above, this Is based on the grounds that you don't have funds readily available, thus you're SEing the company without making a purchase on their online website and one way to do It, Is by using the "serial number method". Naturally, this relates to Items that contain serials such as Apple AirPods, a computer keyboard & mouse, home speakers and so on and so forth. Here's how the serial number method generally works. First and foremost (and as already mentioned), In order to receive a refund or replacement, the serial number of the product you're Intending to social engineer, must still be covered by warranty, otherwise your SE will fail before It has the chance to begin. 

Okay, given you have a valid serial at your disposal, get In touch with the rep/agent and tell him that your Item (that's associated with the serial number you're SEing) Is not working. Now unless he's brain-dead and approves your claim on the spot, he will go through a few troubleshooting steps to try and determine why your product Is not functioning. Do note that some reps can make things very difficult for you by applying every troubleshooting step they can think of, so no matter what he hits you with, remain adamant that your Item Is still not working with every task he asks you to perform. Just remember that you don't have the Item -  you're only pretending that you do!

When he's satisfied that It's defective, a refund/replacement will be arranged, but ONLY when you meet their criteria, namely company protocol used to process claims under the circumstances. This can Include returning the Item which you can bypass by (for example) using the boxing method, asking you for a POD or If It's a very low value Item and not worth the company paying the cost of freight to send It back, a "POP" (Proof Of Purchase) will be requested to be sent In the form of an email attachment. And If you refuse to comply, he has every right to decline your claim. If this Is the first time you've dealt with a POP or perhaps had one bad experience with It, whereby your SE failed, you'd be somewhat at a loss as to how to handle the rep's request. Have no fear, I'll show you how It's done In the topic named "How To Bypass Supplying A Proof Of Purchase" further down the page.
 
The Gift Method

Have you ever received a gift as a birthday or wedding present only to find that upon opening It, you didn't like It one bit, therefore had no Interest whatsoever In keeping It, so you Immediately threw It In the trash? I'd say that your answer Is "Yes" on at least one occasion, particularly If It wasn't too expensive, or maybe you didn't think of what you're about to read next. You see, Instead of disposing of It, you could've returned It to the store of where It was purchased (obviously without a receipt) and depending on the store's policy, they may give you a refund or replacement or an In-store credit, with the latter being the most common alternative - due to not having the receipt.

The "gift method" works In a similar fashion with the only difference being, "you don't have an Item to return, but rather convince the company that you do". More on this shortly. Although It's rarely used In today's world of company manipulation and exploitation, It's still a very effective method for the reason that "It justifies returning an Item without a receipt" - even for legit purposes. After all, the person receiving the gift doesn't have the receipt and the "gifter" has no Intention of keeping It after he gives It as a present, so all that supports the SE'ers claim to send back the product without a proof of purchase.  

For some companies, simply returning the Item without any other form of verification Is fine to credit your account, so when the rep/agent requests It, you can (once again) use the boxing method. If It's quite heavy to register a weight on consignment, "dry Ice" must be added to substitute the weight - which you can follow my tutorial to see exactly how It's done. That being said, not every SE goes according to plan. A lot of representatives are very stubborn and Irrespective of how many times they're told that the receipt cannot be provided (as per the reasons stated above), they'll refuse to budge and ask for the "POP", as well as sending the Item back. Sounds difficult? Not really. I've explained It In the topic after the next named "Seemingly Sending The POP Together With The Return Of Item".  

Disposed Of The Faulty Item Method

I'm sure you've purchased something on the Internet or physically In person, such as a hair straightener or an electric shaver and after arriving home and plugging In your product, It was either dead or lost functionality to some degree, correct? I thought as much. It happens to everyone at some point In time and even though goods are tested and Inspected by the manufacturer prior to shipping them to their suppliers, they're not always In faultless condition.  Companies are well aware of It, but don't like to disclose It, and when customers contact them saying that their Item Is faulty, they have protocols In place to try and Identify why It's not operating as per Its original state

It's at this stage when their step-by-step troubleshooting procedures kick In and the moment It does, that's when you'll put the "disposed of the faulty Item method" Into action, by saying that you threw It out for "health and safety reasons". For Instance, you can say that as you were using your hair straightener, "It blew up" (yes It can happen with ceramic hair straighteners!) and as such, you were very concerned for your safety, so you disposed of It straight away. 

Remember that you don't have the Item, so none of the above events took place - you're just pretending that they did for your SE. This method Is used with a serial number that's still under warranty, whereby (for example) you use the above excuse to avoid returning your product and In order for the company to verify that It was purchased from them, you guessed It, a POP will be needed to process your claim - which Is a common policy for low value Items. Okay, we can now have a look at a few ways to trick representatives Into approving your claim without a POP.     

How To Bypass Supplying A Proof Of Purchase:

For the most part, It's not an easy task to circumvent a POP, especially when dealing with reps who remain firm with their request and do everything they can to make things as difficult as possible, but SEing Is not about focusing on the Impact that reps have on you, but rather "the Impact that you have on them". And the way It's done, Is with the power of manipulation by taking control of all communications, not taking "no" for an answer under any circumstances, and pushing them to their absolute limit until they reach breaking point - thereby finally offering a refund/replacement. Evidently, all that refers to arrogant reps/agents who think they're the best thing since sliced bread, so you must remain one step ahead of their domineering attitude, thus I will Introduce three types of methodologies beginning with the corrupted file method.   
Using The Corrupted File Method

As Its name Implies, the "corrupted file method" Is used to corrupt a given file by using an online service like this, with the Intention of circumventing the need to verify documents as requested by reps. In the case of this article, the document Is the "POP" (Proof Of Purchase). Put simply, you'd send the POP In a file that's unusable and will not execute - regardless of how hard the rep tries to open It. The objective of this method, Is to put the representative at fault for not being able to execute the file and view Its contents and as a result, the claim will be approved on the grounds that he believed the file contained the proof of purchase.

Now the method does have a (somewhat) major drawback that Is not the fault of any SE'er, but more to the fact that "It needs to be repeated a number of times" when "stubborn reps are assessing the claim". Here's what I mean. We'll say you're at the stage where the rep/agent Is asking you to email the POP as an attachment, but Instead of doing that, you've used this website to corrupt the file and sent It to the rep thereafter. On a side note, If that site Is no longer active, hit a Google search - there's quite a few corrupted file websites to choose from. Back on-topic, when he receives your file, he will not be able to open It, so It's a certainty that he'll ask you to resend It and you'll do exactly that, but "In a different file format".

For example, If you've emailed a PDF file the first time, the second time around corrupt a Microsoft Word file with a .doc or .docx extension and after you've sent It, assure the rep that It's working perfectly fine on your end . This gives the Impression that you're doing your utmost best to resolve the Issue. Yet again, he'll tell you to resend It and because he's a pigheaded Individual, he will continue to follow the same path, hence you keep repeating the same process by "corrupting files with different formats/extensions each time" - which (again) seems as though you're trying to sort out the rep's problem. 

This Is what I'm referring to with the method's "drawback" - It's paramount to stay on track by doing the same thing over and over again - send corrupted files In other formats and most Importantly, keep reminding the representative that there's nothing wrong with the file when you tested It on your computer. In addition to that, express your frustration In a firm, yet polite manner, as to why such as simplistic task of double-clicking and opening the file cannot be done by the rep/agent. If need be, request your claim be escalated to senior management. All In all, the key to success Is to not give In to the rep's demands and to stay focused every step of the way with the corrupted file method - which will significantly Increase the likelihood of a successful outcome.     

Photoshopping The Proof Of Purchase

There Is little doubt that Photoshopping a file, Is a very effective approach to circumvent the need to provide an authentic Image of a proof of purchase, but It must be done with extreme accuracy - without any error(s) whatsoever. If there are signs of Inconsistencies (with the end result) that Indicates that the Image has been manipulated and Is not what It supposed to be, you can say goodbye to your poor attempt at SEing. Sure, you can use an online generator such as this which does the job very well Indeed, but what If the company/store you're social engineering Is not listed there, or on any other source/generator on the Internet? Well, If you're proficient In using "Adobe Photoshop", by all means, put your skill set Into action.

Given Photoshop Is what you excel at, there's no point In explaining It - that's your field of expertise but what I will say, Is that In order to maximize the success rate and to avoid showing any signs of tampering, "your fake POP must match the format and layout of the original POP". To do that, order a product on a different account from the same company your SEing at the time (If you don't personally need It, select a very cheap Item that only costs a few dollars or so), and use that receipt as your fake POP and edit It accordingly. Now there's one vital element that's Imperative to take on board with your editing, and that Is the actual "order number" - as this will be one of the very first things the company will look at when processing It Into their system.

For example, many companies generate order numbers using some sort of algorithm and If you change It completely, they'll Identify that It doesn't belong to their Invoicing department, and I don't need to explain what happens next. So what you'll do, Is "only change a couple of digits" - which will preserve the order number In Its proper format, but It won't validate when they cross-check It. This Is precisely the objective of Photoshoping the POP - to make It seem as though It's an administration error on their end, so when they enter the order number Into their computer, It won't show up, thus they'll assume that something went wrong when your order was processed by their accounts team. If your editing Is done with precision leaving only a discrepancy In the order number, It will appear to be their error, so It's likely your claim will be approved. If It's an "Invoice number" that's of relevance, do the same as per above.   

Seemingly Sending The POP Together With The Return Of Item

If you're registered In an active social engineering community to the likes of an Internet forum/board or perhaps a Discord server, I'd say It's safe to assume that you've rarely (If ever) come across discussions about "sending the POP together with your return", which Is why I've decided to conclude this article by bringing It to your attention. Although It's pretty much self-explanatory just by reading the title of this topic, "It's very Important to execute It strategically when communicating with the rep/agent who's assessing your claim". It's extremely simple to apply and very effective when you follow my guidance, so be sure to absorb every detail from this point onwards. 

Let's say you're using the wrong Item received method, whereby you've contacted the representative and said that you received a totally different Item to what you originally ordered. Of course, nothing of the sort happened - you're just claiming that It did for SEing purposes. Now on almost every occasion (when using this method), you will be told to send the wrong Item back and while this Is enough to satisfy most companies, for one reason or another, some will also ask you to provide the POP of the "original purchase Item". When this happens, just agree with a simple "yes" and do not discuss It any further than that, and then return your (seemingly) wrong Item as Instructed, but "box them" by using the boxing method.

Without question, the rep will get In touch with you and request the POP, and this Is when you use your manipulative tactics to deceive him Into thinking that you've already sent It as follows. If you've clicked on the link to my guide In the above paragraph (If you haven't do It now!), you'd be well aware that you have given the Impression that your Item was stolen In transit, by making the package appear to have been tampered with. Can you see where this Is heading? That's right, your POP was put together with the Item and "both were stolen" before the package reached the company. They can't ask for It again - It's no longer with you, so you can't give what you don't have. If they ask why you decided to put the POP with the return, tell them that you spoke with another rep and he said It's best to do It that way. Yet again, this Is another fine approach used to bypass a POP.

In Conclusion:

Everything that you've had the pleasure of reading, Is based on SEs that have their fair share of complexities, namely when representatives evaluate claims with a fine-tooth comb and strictly comply with their guidelines throughout the entire assessment. If you've SEd a company using a method that required a POP, but the rep didn't bother asking for It and much to your surprise he Immediately finalized your claim, consider yourself fortunate to have It approved In that manner. And don't think for a minute that future SEs will also conclude In the same fashion - you WILL experience difficulties a lot more often than not but If you've familiarized yourself with my methods, guides and techniques, the degree of difficulty will be significantly reduced. 


Comments