We think of the digital world as a playground for con artists and shape-shifters, but they don’t require computers to do their thing, and never have. From “The Lives and Lies of a Professional Impostor,” by James C. McKinley Jr. and Rick Rojas in the New York Times:
Investigators say Mr. Wilson is a professional impostor and a skilled forger. Though fraud has become an increasingly invisible offense in a digital world, Mr. Wilson has stuck with a decidedly old-fashioned approach, stealing checks and creating new personas, occasionally with accents and falsified papers, the police said.
He has portrayed himself as a Scottish-born D.J., a Cambridge-trained thespian, a Special Forces officer and a professor at M.I.T. He has posed as executives from Microsoft, British Airways and Apple, always with a military background. He pretended to be a soldier seeking asylum in Canada to escape anti-Semitic attacks in the United States. He once maintained an Irish accent so well and for so long that his cellmate in an Indiana jail was convinced that he was an Irish mobster….
Tattooed across his fingers in green ink is a Gaelic phrase, “Mair Fior.” He says it means “Stay True.”