One day Thomas Ryan, who worked as a white-hat hacker and cyber security analyst, created an entire social media background and history for Robin Sage, an attractive 25-year-old girl who claimed to be a cyber threat analyst at the Naval Network Warfare Command in Norfolk, Virginia.
Her Twitter Bio read: "Sorry to say, I'm not a Green Beret! Just a cute girl stopping by to say hey! My life is about info sec all the way!"
"Robin" had great credentials for a 25-year-old woman. She was a graduate of MIT with a decade of experience in cybersecurity, and she knew how to network very effectively. Ryan purposely chose a relatively attractive woman because he wanted to prove how sex and appearance plays in trust and willingness to connect. He pulled the photo from an amateur porn site, looking for someone who didn't look American.
I can be anything, I'm a Phoenix!
The only agencies with people who never took the bait were the FBI and the CIA. Ryan told the Guardian, "The big takeaway is not to befriend anybody unless you really know who they are."