Romance dating scammer
(It is estimated that only 15 percent of fraud victims report their losses to law enforcement, so the real numbers are probably higher.) As one result, fear of a horrible first date is just one of the things a would-be online dater has to worry about. “Most people think the victims are middle-aged women who can't get a date, but I have worked with men and women of all ages—doctors and lawyers, CEOs of companies, people from the entertainment industry—who you’d never think in a million years would fall for these scams but do,” says Barb Sluppick, who runs romancescams.org, a watchdog site and online support group.
According to the Consumer Reports 2016 Online Dating Survey of more than 114,000 subscribers, among the respondents who were considering online dating but were hesitant, 46 percent said they were concerned about being scammed. “Typically the scammer builds trust by writing long letters over weeks or months and crafting a whole persona for their victims,” says Unit Chief David Farquhar from the Financial Crimes Section of the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) who specializes in cyber-related crimes.
" From internet cafes all over west African countries like Nigeria, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Senegal etc scammers are zeroing in on their prey - singles looking for love online. The Nigerians call them 'maghas' which is slang for gullible white people.
The scammers spend their day trolling the dating sites and chat rooms for contact emails, and then send off thousands of fraudulent letters and emails awaiting the victim's replies.
Fraudsters may also use the conversations you have to find out enough personal information about you to commit identity fraud.
They’ll ask innocent-looking questions about you that make it look like they just want to get to know you, such as your date of birth, home address or family background.
Maria deposited the check and sent the money, but was soon contacted by her bank, which told her the check was bad and she had to repay the ,500.
On top of losing her money, the fake “Andrew” disappeared, and Maria never heard from him again. The scammer may use photos from magazines and portray himself or herself as talented and successful. citizen working or serving abroad, or give a similar excuse to explain their inability to meet in person.
The most common comment of victims who think they have found the love of their life is "I can't believe I was so stupid!
“That big investment gives victims a false sense that the relationship must be real.” Eventually a pitch for money comes.
Often the scammer will say an emergency situation has arisen and money is needed fast to avoid dire consequences.
Some scam artists use bogus profiles to con the people they meet out of hundreds or thousands of dollars.
Criminals who perpetrate online dating and romance scams use emotional appeals to quickly gain their victims’ trust and then, just as quickly, exploit it.