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This article needs additional citations for verification. Thompson was a clumsy swindler who asked his victims to express confidence in him by giving him money or their watch rather than gaining their confidence in a more nuanced way. When accomplices are employed, they are known as shills. A short con or small con is a fast swindle which takes just minutes. It typically aims to rob the victim of everything in his or her wallet. It aims to rob the victim of huge sums of money or valuable things, often by getting him or her to empty out banking accounts and borrow from family members. In Confessions of a Confidence Man, Edward H.
Smith lists the «six definite steps or stages of growth» of a confidence game. He notes that some steps may be omitted. Foundation Work Preparations are made in advance of the game, including the hiring of any assistants required. Build-up The victim is given an opportunity to profit from a scheme. The victim’s greed is encouraged, such that their rational judgment of the situation might be impaired. Pay-off or Convincer The victim receives a small payout as a demonstration of the scheme’s effectiveness.