Cautionary Tales The Rogue Dressed as a Captain

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One crisp morning in Berlin, in 1906, a small group of soldiers were led on an extraordinary heist by a man they believed to be a Captain. So how did an aging nobody in a fake uniform trick them into aiding him in the crime of the century? Some say we humans will obey orders from anyone who dresses the part… but the real reason why we fall for tricksters time and again is far more interesting. Fraudsters and charlatans reel us in slowly by using psychology against us.

The Host

Tim Harford

Tim Harford’s long-running column in the Financial Times, “The Undercover Economist,” reveals the economic ideas behind everyday experiences. His first book, The Undercover Economist, was published in 30 languages and sold…