Thanks to one of my magic students, Michael McMenamin for alerting me on this Belgian PSA. It’s brilliant. Seems to me CFI or JREF could do a lot of people real good by doing something similar instead of spending thousands of dollars on more talking head seminars and preaching to the choir. As usual, Europe has to show the rest of the world the trend. Good for them.
“Do you really need pyschic abilities to know intimate details about a stranger? Maybe not. A new video from Belgium that hit it big on Reddit and YouTube is proving that, thanks to the Internet and social media, learning a person’s deepest secrets and even just mundane info such as his or her favorite color or best friend’s name is only a few clicks away.
The video is actually a public service announcement titled, “Amazing Mind Reader Reveals His Gift.” It begins with random people being selected from the streets of Brussels. They are asked if they would like to participate in an upcoming TV program featuring Dave, described as a gifted clairvoyant. Once they agree, they are ushered into a white tent to meet Dave. He hugs them and dances around as he seemingly tries to get a sense of the person’s energy. As people are seated across from him, Dave tells them random facts about them, from the color of the motorcycle they own to their bank account number and even the types and locations of their tattoos.
As the unassuming subjects become absorbed in Dave’s trance and the factual information he is providing, the truth behind his magic is revealed. A curtain drops, and behind it is a group of computer hackers dressed in all black searching the Internet for information about each of the individuals. In fact, a large monitor sits in front of the hackers, displaying pictures and personal information about the subjects. Each person seems astonished, first at the curtain dropping and then at the reveal as they realize what has taken place.
The video was produced by a trade group called the Belgian Financial Sector Federation. They claim that the masked hackers dug up all the personal information on the subjects in real time while shooting the clip. They made the video to urge citizens to “be vigilant. Because Internet fraudsters can use information against you.”
The video has been viewed almost half a million times on YouTube, and commenters have left mostly positive reactions to it. One person wrote, “True. Very true.”
Although things were not as the people in the video perceived them, the people seem grateful to have been made aware of how careless they may have been with their personal information online. They seem aware that they left themselves vulnerable to crimes but are appreciative of the eye-opening experience.”
Thanks Dave, whoever you are.
Let’s see more of this: