Do you have engineered ships, are you elite, are you maxed out on rank? I find it very hard to believe some stories of open only players who have never tried solo or a private group. Not saying that about you because you have put in almost no details. The ones that I cannot believe are the ones who claim to have over 1000 hours, some claim to have 3000-4000+ hours in open, never having gone into solo or private group modes, have a dozen fully engineered ships, are maxed out on engineering mats, have unlocked at least every engineer near the bubble, max rank, triple elite, and on and on, yet have only been killed twice in 4-5 years of open only play, and have only been shot at outside of being killed twice two to three times by other players.
I'm mostly an Explorer, who comes back to the Bubble to potter around and do whatever.. Missions, CG's, whatever floats my boat. I've got some End'ed Power stuff and a an Eng'ed FSD. I've also got a Guardian FSD Booster. Got the Mats and Plans for more though.. Oh, and I also have some Eng'ed weapons at home, but I rarely mount them. As for Rank, the only Elite rank I have is for Exploration. Expert in Combat, Tycoon for Trade.
Gankers and griefers are always at systems where noobs will jump in the first time they leave the starting systems, they are all around the engineer bases and in the systems waiting near the star if they are not right there close to the base, they are at every CG event, at every gold rush, every hotspot, every popular location, but this guy managed to play in open only starting in a poorly rated starter ship, might have upgraded to an A rated Cobra before leaving the starter system, and evaded meta fully engineered ships, and players or missed them by chance for 4 years as they gathered mats and visited every engineer, , etc times a thousand, lol.
No way, did anyone get that far along from a noob in open only, and only got ganked twice.
There is no shame in saying the truth, that they did all of their grinding in solo or private, and once they had capable skills and ships they finally made open their permanent home.
Not using any terms or names, but I do not believe those stories for one second.
Maybe some of us wised up after the 2nd time.. Just because you don't believe it, doesn't make it untrue. Part of my plan for success is that I don't go to a lot of those 'popular' places, mostly because I no longer have any need to. I've done all the Engineering I want, got the Guardian item that interested me. I don't grind, I've rarely felt the need to, I keep the bins pretty full just pottering around doing 'stuff'. CG's are probably my Number 1 risk for being ganked and it doesn't seem to happen - I wish I knew why. Clearly I've had a different experience playing ED, but you don't see me implying others are a liar because my experience doesn't match theirs.