Has an online love interest asked you for money?

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Looking to start a new relationship? For some, that may mean meeting a new love interest online. Word to the wise: sometimes it’s best to lead with your head and not your heart.

Millions of Americans use dating sites, social networking sites, and chat rooms to meet people. And many forge successful relationships. But scammers also use these sites to meet potential victims. They create fake profiles to build online relationships, and eventually convince people to send money in the name of love.

The Federal Trade Commission receives thousands of reports each year about romance scammers who create fake online relationships only to steal their victims’ money.

Unfortunately, an online love interest who asks for money is almost certainly a scam artist.

The FTC’s new infographic, developed with the American Bankers Association Foundation, lists common signs of online dating scams and what to do if someone you meet online asks you for money.

Below are some tips to identify a real romance versus a scammer cruising for a target.

Online Dating Scams. Has an online love interest asked you for money? That's a scam. Scammers know millions of people use online dating sites. They are there, too, hiding behind fake profiles. Signs of a scam: Professes love quickly. Claims to be from the U.S., but is overseas for business or military service. Asks for money, and lures you off the dating site. Claims to need money — for emergencies, hospital bills, or travel. Plans to visit, but can’t because of an emergency. $220 million lost in 2016. $56 million lost in 2012. Reports to the FBI tripled over 5 years (4,476 reports in 2012; 14,546 reports in 2016) What to do: Slow down — and talk to someone you trust. Don’t let a scammer rush you. Never wire money, put money on a gift or cash reload card, or send cash to an online love interest. You won’t get it back. Contact your bank right away if you think you’ve sent money to a scammer. Report your experience to: • The online dating site • Federal Trade Commission: ftc.gov/complaint • Federal Bureau of Investigation: ic3.gov. Learn more at ftc.gov/imposters and aba.com/engagement

Please share this information with others. Victims may be embarrassed to talk about their experiences, but you can help. A simple phone call, email or text, saying “Look what I just found” and sharing this information may make a difference in someone else’s life.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Comments

It would be great if these could be generated in an easily printed format. I work at a credit union - and have member's falling for these types of scams regularly. This would be nice to get in their hands.

We have a pdf of the infographic that you can print and share.  Thank you.

The man who scammed me money three years ago, contact me again, he said he was sorry and will repay the money to me. Of course, I know he is lying, what should I do? My case was reported to police three years ago, but finally closed file by police for further investigation impossible.

If you were scammed by someone, and you get a call about a refund, that call is probably also a scam. Don’t give the person any personal or financial information.

I have text msg saying they from western union and FTC FROM PHENOX ARAZONA FROM FBI I WAS TO CONTACT THEM OR MEET THEM AT THE AIRPORT

I was scammed by a guy calling himself Peter Kaua Sullivan, my fiance. I met him on Match.com and he scammed me all my savings over 2 years period from Western Union, Moneygram, Walmart to Walmart, ITunes cards. Just as you all said he was stuck abroad, his son had cancer and he owed taxes to Istanbul, Turkish government for job done there. He also had the money forwarded from Kenya or so he said. I was at the airport waiting for him to arrive several times and he never showed. he had an excuse each time of an emergency.

I had almost the same exact thing. His name was Mathew McCleary that was from Australia but talked with a Spanish accent. He was coming to see me but his crude oil shipment wouldn't ship because he had to pay insurance. Supposedly he all ready paid 37K. He was telling me he was in Istanbul Turkey. He needed 4710K.I told him repeatedly I had no money. He tried to make me feel guilty because I couldnt send the money.

I was talking to someone on Plenty of Fish. He had a European accent and told me he was from Sofia, Bulgaria. We spoke for a long time and he told me he was on a ship heading to Australia for business in shipping. That’s fine and he never did ask me for money, just an iTunes card. Eventually he did ask if I would accept a check that a client owed him. I said no due to scams. I did think about it and said I would accept the check but I would not deposit it in my account. He didn’t like that but too bad.

I went to the bank and asked them to check if it was legit. First of all, why would someone ask a stranger to accept a $4000 check? I can steal it! The check was deposited to a new account just for that purpose. The following day the bank told me the check was fake. I also requested copies of the check. I was able to contact the supposed sender that lives I Maryland. He was an elderly man who told me that he and his wife had identity issues and he never heard of the third party bank the check was cut from. The bank was legit, just not his bank.

I called the sender of the check and told him it cleared but I was keeping the money. Then after much fighting, I took pictures of the check that the bank had stamped and told him it was fake and that I spoke to his client that never had an account at that bank. Anyway he denied all and had accused me of stealing his money! What nerve!

I had the exact same thing. Girl first asked for small amount to get her i tunes subscription but i didnt gave after sometime she stopped talking to me

Mathew MacCleary was scamming both you and me simultaneously. Your name isn't Alana is it because he once called me that by mistake. Australian citizen, deceased wife Laura, Pentecostal, grew up in Brazil ..sound familiar?

what did he look like

No one deployed overseas in a hot spot should be using a dating site. Violating security protocols. My would be scammer asked me to let his bank wire his money into my account to save it from being confiscated. At least I recognized that as a variant of the Nigerian scam. Wish they could be caught half as easily as they seem to catch their would be victims.

I also met this gentleman on the TAGG website, who calls himself Johnson Smith. He is in the United States Marine Corp,deployed to Egypt. We chatted for a little while, and he suggested a different website (Whats App) to continue talking. We talked for about two days, before he gave me the story about bad food over there, and he needed money to buy American food, and it was expensive. He asked me to send him $700...which I have not done. First he said send it Western Union,then he said no, send it through Money Gram. This should not be happening. I decided to Google scams, and found this site.

This is the same individual that tried to scam me just recently on hi5 he uses the name “Johnson s”. He asked me to add him on what’s up app and he gave me the same story about bad food in Egypt and he was deployed in Egypt. He tried to ask me money $300-$100 for him to buy American food . He said he works for us marines and he wanted me to send him money through money gram. I had deleted my hi5 and tagged accounts for my safety and to let other know so this does not happen to them!

I just got a request from a woman claiming to be a marine stationed on a peace keeping mission in Nigeria, she said she needed money for food lol

Thanks for the heads up I too been scam earlier today this girl I met on dating site asked me for money for about fifty dollars gift card for Amazon she said that she was in Nigeria

Same thing happened to me, I started dating a girl online on okcupid.com, she was in love with me after three days of chatting, which seemed really weird to me. When I asked her to meet up, she said she was been deployed to Syria the next day, so we could not meet up. The next day, after 24 hours she texted me saying that she got to Syria safe, and asked me if I could buy her a $50 itunes card so she could watch movies. I told her that I did not have money at that time, and she insisted me to do it, but I did not. The next day she said that her brother was really ill and she needed to send him a check cause he was getting a surgery. I told her to send the money to her mother, but she said she did not have contact with her mother, and she needed to send me the check, so I could take some money and then give the rest to her brother. I said no right away. She insisted, and started to make me feel bad for not helping her. I deleted her from my account and I blocked her contact after letting her know that she was a scam. Crazy people.

Did that person send you a picture

Don't send a penny. Same happened to me but with a guy named Ukay Amaogu.

I've been a victim of many scams by several banks and individual all in the same group they have scam me for over $6,000 I have their emails and phone numbers

I met a Nigerian from Aba Abia named Ukay Amaogu for over a year now. He started making sad stories about a sick lil sister he even send a video. I send dome $ then he said he would sleep outside he needed 800.00 to pay rent etc etc continually asking for money and making sad stories and making me feel guilty like I shoukd send him money without him asking bec I knew about his hustle. Omg that pists me off. There are tbousands of scammers in Nigeria said by himself. How stupid. Just spread the news and don't send $ or give bank info.

Is there any way I can add photos to my comments? I have 3 photos of men not listed and current chars of them wanting money

No, we can't post pictures on the blog.

Is there a place that has listed known scammer phone number that I can look at or names 458-212-3064

Can we put there names on here I also have pictures

This is person on facebook claiming to be General Stephen Townsned. Very attractive man. He is trying to scam people like myself, says he is in love with me and wants to meet me and spend the rest of his life with me. Want me to sent him lots of money for flight to come here and meet me and marry me.

Same person claiming to be General Townsend, born in Griffin Georgia, and is overseas fight the war.......wanted me to send two I-tunes cards because he's not able to have any money and can't access his bank while there..........hmmmmm go figure He's is also in love with me and wants us to be together when he gets back to the states......................

This is all too familiar working on sea no access to money due to a contract. Wife died , said he loved me asked for $950 to be sent to come meet me. Next son is in hospital needs money for the bill so the doctor will release him. Got mad when i said no said lovers do anything.
I disagree with the western union and money gram. He said right from day one he wanted to get married. Hard when your life is on sea.

I would like to see your picks. I have been searching for sites with pica of men scammers. It seems to be hard to find them.

I have been getting chatted up by a guy called Wilfred Joe, who claims to work on oil rigs and has a young son called Wilson. He asked if I would send him money for leave from the rigs. I have been looking here to check him out and note he has been using lots of different names like Daniel Markel, Roland Smith etc. Thankfully I did the photo search and found out he is a scammer. I have read what other people have said and note that in his profile under various names that he has used different locations as his home country and also different dates of birth. I'm glad I didn't send him any cash and kept refusing his request to send him money.

I met a doc Wilson on line working in Syria as medical doctor for us army but working for United Nations and is 57 and wants early retirement. Very romantic and good with words and sending music links and within 3 days of being on dating site he wanted to move to email and professed his love quickly and felt I was his soul mate. He
Uses Emails hangouts and Skype! wanted me to send £2800 for flights Dubai to uk business class as he reckons he has diplomatic passport & services would fly him to
Dubai from Syria. after 8 weeks of daily contact I said no and said he was a scammer.
He is still contacting me saying him loved me and I have made it clear I’m sending no money, His name is Kev but he likes to be addressed as Wilson..

Could his name be Kelvin Teddy

I recently had a doctor from the UNITED NATION'S saying that he was looking for someone like me. He said that he had a daughter and was living in Maryland, and his daughter was in boarding school. He said he was in Syria,send there for a year. He told me that he had 3 months to go. He used the name of Adams Harold Anthony jr. He said he was American. He called me and as soon as I heard his voice I knew he was a scammer. I keep hearing a rooster in the background. His said that the military camp was close to Syria homes. He then told me that all he could do was think about me. He had only text me a few times. So I hung up on him? And blocked him. Now I have another one saying the same thing but this one is on a oil rig. Blocking that one too.

Oil rig ...whats his name ...i got a name and pic see if its the same one

Mine said he was on a oil rig he says his name is Michael Gomez he has a son named Kelvin that went to boarding school in CA his pictures are very hot looking. I fell in love just from his pictures and words that he spoke. Just after about 4 days he told me that we were going to live as man and wife. I even started to plain a wedding he was so coopertive with the plans it was so appealing to me. He had me but I only lost $1000.00 dollars that I had extra because my car was hit and that was the money from the insurenc copany i was to give the macanic for the work that was done to my car. He said he would pay me back but I will never see that money again and I ended up paying for the car with a credit card and I can barely pay my bills right now

Craig Welshpool
Son in boarding school/health issues/ needs surgery

I have been texting with fella for 6 months.He says his name is chris adam works on oil rig in saudi arabia.I cant find any info on him.how can I check him out

I also have this man asking me for money to get off out rig . I’m curious to see if it’s the same person . Where could we share pictures?

I also am chatting with a man that works for Exxon who is on and oil rig with a contract. He’s asked me to get an $18,000 loan which of course I’m not going to. He says he loves me and wants to be with me the rest of my life. I’m so afraid that this may be a scam. He seems so sincere and I’ve seen pictures of his kids. He has a LinkedIn account and not much on the web regarding his name. He is very handsome… We use Viber to communicate. His name is Daniel… Anyone heard of this guy?

Hi have similar one working in exxon,asking to pay for contract in petrosa.. do you have his pics?

I think I may be in contact with a scammer who is very good looking and convincing. I have pics of him. I’d love to see if y’all pics to compare

Daniel Bradon - he is on Instagram - Said he was from Panama City, Fla. Big elaborate story about having a masters degree in Petroleum Engineering on rigs out on Canadian seas. Needed to claim BIG money from a previous contract in India but couldn't access it while on the rig so wanted me to collect it for him. Got some really illiterate Gmail from someone claiming to be with the United Nations and wanted my personal information so they could "verify" me as a recipient. I of course said no. He was very persistent, got ugly and angry so I blocked him. There are 3 others as well, similar stories, different jobs ( All were widowed in tragic circumstances, all have teenage daughters). And, ALL pretty much illiterate haha.

Is his Name Ethan Logan?

Just ended my online supposed “love” scammer Wilson Moore or Moor yesterday! He had me good! Smooth eloquent talker, romantic, handsome, with 8 yr old daughter living in Virginia with nanny as he worked in Iraq as a doctor with MSF org. for US Army. Mom n dad, n ex wife and grandmother all deceased..

He called me his wife pretty quick. He wanted $2700 for lawyer and docs due to him being detained in customs in Istanbul Turkey for supposed transporting money in his luggage??? He was supposedly on his way to see me!! Sooo many red flags in a 2 month period only. But I was blinded, and now feel heartbroken?

But, reading all these testimonials has me feeling like I’m not alone and a lot better. I wish I could compare photos with someone or somewhere? I had that what if he is real mentality! I feel so foolish for falling for this type of scam. Very vulnerable i guess?? What an experience. No money was ever sent, thank goodness. Any input would be greatly appreciated!

Yes I am interested in your post I was akwardly induced to like this girl that was not real... "The scam artist" told me she was looking for love but I let her think twice about what she had said to me because nothing made sense she said she was from the US but lives in Nigeria with her grand mother stupid me sent her 3 pictures of me so now I know a poor girl will see that face of mine but worst part is that I have no clue how she ended up in my Gmail address I told her I no longer needed her attention and that she was basic a scammer and blocked her from my contacts so sad that these people think they can get away with posting other people's pictures and acting as if they are them that poor girl on the picture must of been looking for somebody and found the perfect guy.. but the good thing that I feel inlove with their girl in the picture and not the guy or girl who was telling me all those positive things..

I've been talking to female scammers on Twitter. Fast talking how they want to spend the rest of their lives with me and need iTunes because wifi used up. Or need money to fly to be with me. I laugh because I ask for pics and they send profile pic or same ones. I look at what is in back ground of pictures for info. Lot's of time they back east but on my same time zones. When they should be asleep. It's sad what people do a good minded person. Just shows how sick there mind is to think this way. And they call them selves American. To me a terrorist gets more respect. Lest they don't lie. They say they want to hurt us. Lol. Ask questions and don't move fast.
Best of luck.

I just had a very similiar experiance but his name is Anthony James. He is asking me for 23,000 to get out of jail for fines not paid after being in an auto accident. Extremely handsome man proclaimed his love and wanated to spend rest of life with me along with marriage. Just said this yesterday. He always knows just the right thing to say to bring me back to thinking that maybe he isn't a scammer. I sent him a 500 walmart card back in April so he could pay some bills here in the states. Come to find out today...he bought clothes , womens shoes and a playstation with it. UGGGGGG

This is the guy who contacted me!! He had asked for money but the bank told me not to. He is right now asking for iTune cards. Even while I came on this site to see why someone would want me to send them 2 $100 ones just for a gift. He said to take a picture of back of the cards etc. I am so glad I came on here!

Is this guys name Noah Miller Shaklee.. Stationed at Camp Lejeune North Carolina

how did u find out im going thru the same thing .i feel ing scamed for 30000.she is still trying every thing to get more out of me

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