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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.

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Money & Credit

Comments

Richard Jefferson is the name my scammer is using. Says sh lives in NYC had a 9 year old daughter he started out on words with friends then asked to move to hangouts. Started calling me wifey right off the bat. Sending the same poems every day. Then he was scared to tell me but he wanted iTunes card. Then he sent an old video of someone getting hurt and says he needs 7000 to keep himself out of jail he was supposed be doing that job but he wanted to talk to me. I confronted him and he got pissed cuz I called him a scammer. A few hours later s got another message that said baby please help me. Well I was born at night but not last night!! Lol

Chatted to guy fro POF and he was engineer in mine is South Africa and has 11 year old son. He was transferred to Ghana and had to pay own way & company would reimburse.....now he has been detained at airport on way to flying home to Merced California as he had two rings.....now needs $3000 to be allowed to fly home. Name David Bradley....son Michael....its customs official asking for money.
Any similar stories?

This is a scam. I was scammed. This scenario is similar.

Met a woman named Nathalie Martin on a dating website. When we met, we quickly became a girlfriend and boyfriend after chatting on skype. Everything seem legit because I saw her on Skype. I tried to image search her and haven't found anything out of the ordinary. The past few weeks everything seem "normal" like normal couples do. We Skyped in the morning and evening pacific time. The only thing that was in my hindsight was that she professed her love very quickly and wanted to meet me in person. She said she lives in Toronto, Canada, however at the time we were "together," she was in the Philippines taking classes as an event planner certificate.
One night she told me she was robbed while going back to her residence and needed money for help. I knew the story sounded fishy, but at the time I felt sorry for her. She asked me to transfer money through western union. I went to the nearest western union and sent her the money, the personal info she gave me was totally a different name. From there, I thought that was the end of that. The week before she was suppose to depart from Phillipines to Toronto, she asked me for money again for living expenses. I was hesitant to give her money again because I felt like I was being scammed but I gave her some money again because I was worried about her. The day before her departure we talked and she said she wanted to see me after she went back. She was supposed to call me back, but unfortunately she never did. No calls, Skype status was invisible and I was blocked from talking to her on the dating site. I tried to contact her through Skype and email and no response. It's been 11 days since I last message her. I'm still shocked and sadden that it happened and I'm still staying strong. She is a white female, believe to be in mid 20's, blonde, wearing a tank top on her profile pic. She is very charming, really charming. Beware!!!

Sorry to hear that...

omg... i met her too at tagged. she did the exact same thing. she seemed legit at first, then she gave me her skype contact. after 2 days, she said she loved me. we chatted on skype for a bit, then she used the same story as above. thank god i read this post and i will not be sending her anything on western union. please note that she wanted me to send her money to "nervin padilla" in the philippines. this is to replace her "lost" passport so she can come back to canada.

everything above happened to me except me giving her money, thank you mr. loveless. she gave me her address as well in toronto, thank you once again.

I think I'm going through the same thing. Mine claims to be of German and Romanian decent. Said that he is a widower of seven years. Has a daughter we will call her "Rita" that he says goes to college in Florida. He lives in Chicago and has a home in CA as well. Wants to be with me,is very charming,saying what he will do for me. Supposedly works in construction. Has sent pictures of daughter and him by these expensive machinery. Told me that he is Abu Dhabi sent me a picture of the contract. Everything was set to go start the work. Text me today to say that machines are stuck at the port because he didn't pay some expenses and the port patrol won't let the machines in until he pays $140,000.00. He won't get paid until the first quarter soothe contract states and his company is supposed to self fund the 1st quarter. He never asked me for anything but got a little ticked when so asked was he a scammer. Now I have pictures of a very Handsome 60 year man in good shape I'm 50 although reading these scenarios I don't think who I'm seeing us who I am talking to.

Please beware and know this is a scammer! My scammer used stolen photos. Said he was doing contract work for UN in Syria. Said UN wouldn't pay til he got back to U.S. this was a lie. Said wife(rita) and young daughter(Sarah) had been in a tragic car accident about 7 years ago. Son Harry was in a boarding school in Georgia. Lies. All lies. But I fell for it. Lost a marriage of 30 years and almost lost my home. Get out now!

Kind of sounds like my scammer. But G.K. is a handsome 63 yo who has a contract with the Egyptian Gov. to mine for diamonds in Cairo. Equipment is stuck in customs. Unfortunately I have been taken for a huge amount of money. Supposedly a widower from WV, wife died of breast cancer, Older son died while serving. I found the name on FB and there is a strong resemblance. That being said, I still I am involved in a scam.

Hello, sounds like my mom might be currently scammed by same person. Wish there was a way for us to communicate and exchange his images to see if it’s same person. She has started sending him cards since she said she would not send any money. He is a handsome, in shape 60 year old by the pics he has sent her. Unreal, I have told her he is scamming her and she doesn’t believe me.

Anyone here heard of Moise Viorel? Claims to be of German decent. Lives in Chicago has a daughter that goes to college in Florida,is a widower. Says he owns a construction company and is doing work over in Abu Dhabi now his machines are stuck at the port with port police and it $140k because of some fees he didn't pay. He never asked me for any money yet it sent off red flags because of things I had heard about scams. Says he also has a home on Hill Street in Solana Beach CA. I googled the home in Chicago on 107th street and it is nice although it is for sale. Then when I did ask him to s3nd me pictures of him I. Dhabi since I have never traveled out of the country he says I don't trust him. He says he is too old for games all because I started to ask him questions about his true relationship goals and his intentions. He has text or called me everyday since we began communicating. Since our very heated conversation on his end this is the first day that I havent received a text or anything from him.

My husband scammed by someone posing as Emily Ratjowski model. He sent money and really believed it was her because she sent a pic of passport. I found the same passport pinterist.i feel out marriage is over and cannot believe he fell for this.

That sucks that happened to your husband. I am married and had a young woman suddenly contact me and was professing her "love" for me and eventually asking for iTunes cards because it was her "birthday" in a week and I told her it was my "birthday" the day before hersband asked her what she was going to get me? Ha ha. So turned it completely around. I asked myself..."Why would a young "attractve" lady contact me out of the blue and fall in love with me immediately and ask for money? "

Common sense days scam. Your husband needs to ask himself the same question next time.

What they do with these iTunes cards is resell the numbers on the backs for cash. I'm being approached by three or four right now. One even used pictures of herself, dressed and nude, and making a peace sign with her left hand as I requested, to prove she was a real person. Guess I have to cut them all off. No one this gorgeous would really be interested in me.

I wish i had read your article before i got "scammed" out of 30K

Met someone on tinder. Claims to be USMC deployed in Syria but contracted with UN. Mom and Dad deceased. Has 4 yr old son. But his Mom gave him up. Asked for money for flight to come home to be with me. Sent him money. Then he has asked 4 more times. Out $9k. Every time I ask him questions I don't get straight answers. He gets mad when I tell him he is scamming me. I too have had friend request on FB of people I don't know. He said he lives in my hometown but won't give me address because it's in a military neighborhood and I can't see his house. He lied about his birthday. His answers aren't consistent. He claims to love me and calls me his fiance. It's creepy. Also heard a rooster in background but he said someone gave his Captain a rooster. When he calls me he has a Jamaican accent but he says the monitoring device he has to use to call me has bad signal. So many red flags. His name is Staff Sergeant Alex Patrick. His pictures are him wearing his uniform. He says he is going to pay me back when he gets home.claims to make 35k a month but doesn't have access to his money.I have come to terms he is scamming me and I'll never see my money.

I have a friend who I’m sure is being scammed by someone with the name of Antonio Grytsenko. Supposedly lives in St. Petersburg, Florida, geologist for Shell Oil, has a 12 yr. old daughter and 17 yr old son. Says wife was a drug addict. He has a nanny and is about to leave to work in Australia for 3 months. He refuses to FaceTime, has such heavy accent that he is very hard to understand. Anyone else had an experience with this man?

What happened with your friend? This person just contacted me!

I was scam at one time but I start to ask military friends ..that have some and daughters in the mmilitary..they told me that don't send money to anyone online cos a scam...i would never see the money return back...now I ask many question ...I find out that a scammer was using a sailor profile from facebook ..that I checkout myself ..he was married and was in the navy ..I find the real sailor on facebook to warn him that someone was using he info for money ..the sailor told me don't send money or any iTunes cards .,cos he was a scammer...now I have learn...about scam on the dating sites ...they right way say that they love u and soon will be with in a couple of months ..but they are on a peace mission but need help to come home and to request for leave to come to get married with me very soon...

If anyone is dealing with a Brian Andreas Lukas/ Brian LUKAS, ANDREAS LUKAS who has been on OK CUPID, and other sites, be aware he has been found to impersonate people, scam people, using stories of from Texas, and Architect, travels all over USA, self employed, divorced, no children, was married for 25 years, an only child, born in Austria. Uses the story that he has contract work in X Y Z places, then claims to be stranded and calls on hangout saying he has no money to get his work done. he uses burner phones. once he has the money and says he will pay you back the calls get less and less and eventually you hear nothing. Ladies be careful, he says he is 59 years old. sends lots of photos, but they could be of anyone.

anyone had richard smith please advise urgently

Hi I was in contact with this man from PenPal
World..his name he claimed Michael Johnson jones..54 years old
He worked as senior engineer in an oil rig off shore Italy
He was born in Canada but worked for USA company ..has a house in Florida and Vancouver
Claimed he loved me very much and was coming home to marry me ..I live in Asia
He was divorced and had 3 sons..his parents had died in an air crash when he was 11
Towards the 2 week of our friendship he comes up with the gold bar thing..says it’s cheap and lots of his colleagues are buying it from Italy ..wanted to ship it to me but didn’t have enough money for the freight ..Luckily I discussed with my cousins and found the bank account was fake and did not belong to fed ex. Then we continued to be friends he promised not to get me involved..history repeats ..toward the end of his contract in the oil rig he goes to England to sell the gold
Then i get a call saying please help me with the balance money for tax clearance as he was stuck in the customs in England for the gold ..he Wanted -7k and promise to pay me back as soon as he came home.. I analysed the whole thing..told him off that he is fake..

I have my scam experience also in Instagram 2 weeks ago a certain Charles MacDonald started chatting me telling me that i am so cute and gorgeous based on my instagram post. He said he lives in New York but he had a small business in Malaysia so he go there from time to time. Until he asked my mobile to prove to me that he is serious with the new love affection he found on me. Then he started calling me everyday but funny he used 1 mobile number and 2 different landline yes they are from US mainly in Illinois and started using his malaysia number to make it short he used 4 different number now to call me from time to time. It is surprising that in one week period he said he love me too much and he is ready to go the distance coz im in Qatar (lol its quiet so quick for me). Then suddenly he started telling me that he is in the bank from time to time coz he needs fund for Malaysia project then he need to travel in the weekend. So in 10th day to 13th day the day after we met he started mentioning about bank loan and he said he got some amount but not the full so he still needs some funds and he go to many friends to find funds so me i just listen and wish him luck all the time. Then so bla bla...until in 15th day he told me he is travelling to Malaysia having not enough fund so need to stay in accomodation instead of hotel to save money. He need to finance the start up of Housing construction every conversation was Thru IG chat and he calls me from time to time using Malaysia mobile number now. Then yesterday he said he is in a very bad situation or else all the supplier and subcontractor will not proceed the work unless he pay them in cash he needs around 6000 USD (wow its huge lol)..he told me he doesn't want to discuss money matter but he have no choice he needs to tell me because we are already partners and lovers (wow in just 2 weeks time). I told him im sorry i have my financial problem also and we just known each other for 2 weeks im sorry i dont have that cash. Then he said he understand my situation later he make negotiation instead of 6000 to make it 2000 USD and i have to arrange it today or tomorrow he is asking for quick bank transfer. So to play it well i told him give me all your personal details i will send western union (lol just to for me to play the game) first he said he can not give his bank details because he is outside US and he is in malaysia he will check if western union or moneygram is possible, after 2 minutes he said Western or Moneygram is possible for me from Qatar to malaysia lol...so i asked him give me ur personal details his reply was he will provide personal details once the money from my side was ready. i told him im not promising anything to u and he said he wants to cry and helpless and dont know what to do. By the way he said he is American but with Italian blood so i asked him why his accent doesn't sound slang American.the words are very clear without slang. everyday he is still sending me love messages but once i replied to him he is still insisting to send him the 2000 USD hahaha...crazy..by the way his name according to him is Charles Antonio MacDonald in IG he had a very handsome profile macharles.donald. last night we talk and i told him stopped fooling people and he will be karma in future and God is watching. today no more romantic Charles for me...hehe..girls beware of quick romance and handsome picture its a trap..

I have the same experience with you. I just met him, through Skype, and within few weeks he told me that he loves me. But about one month or two, he asked me to help him, because he's in the business trip and the master card that he was using isn't acceptable in the hotel. He told me he's from Lille, France. and he's in Cote' d'evoire now. But I told him that I'm not rich and nothing to lend him. He needs 700euros, and then he told me that he already found 600 euros , what I need to do is to fill the remaining amount which is 100euros. I've told him many times that I don't have money, and he still insisted, and negotiated until 50euros. Thanks for this site. I will never send him money. I'm planning to send him money next week. Because he told me , he's telling the truth and he will pay me. But this articles strongly helps me. Thank you.

anyone know of a karen pease claiming to be from nashvill tn and going with her mom to visit ghana her mom's country

I met man online n he claimed he loved me within days of chatting n he proposed within week. He said he is in military army n currently in Syria serving there. He too claimed too have daughter but not certain he does n he wants too come too meet me but he needs access too money the military are keeping from him.He needed $1500 USD. I'm in Australia. He asked me for help by sending him money via iTunes cards n thru electronic wire transfer thru my bank. Stupid me sent $600 n regret it big time. He went by name of fling Goodman. He claimed he was going too come too me in Australia with his daughter.
I'm a fool I know for helping him n regret it so much. I feel like I'm a criminal now too n bad person

Scammer going by the name of Mary edwards on twitter and very convincing.

Has anyone heard of Phillip Werner from Dallas TX? He is originally from Germany, age 57, moved here from Germany as teenager. He has a young son, hiss wife supposedly died during child birth. We've been emailing and texting for about two months. He's sent me photos of him and his son. He has asked me for money for a job he is working in Turkey. NO, I've not sent anything! Nor have I given him any personal information. I just want to know if anyone's story matches this one.

Some similarities. Stop communicating. This is a scam.

To Notsureaboutthis, I met a man through Instagram at the end of June he’s been texting me every day and calling me every night. He told me he has a young daughter and son and that his wife supposedly died during childbirth two years ago along with the child. He says he is an civil engineer living in the central United States. He got a contract to deliver goods to Istanbul Turkey. Said that he was German, previously lived in the UK and had been in the states for the last 18 years. Was madly in love with me after two weeks, I told him he was crazy. Two days ago he supposedly saluted turkey, went to the airport to pay for the goods, and was told by the authorities that since he was not a resident that he had to pay tariffs and fees totaling $18,000. Long story short in the end he said they would except $7000, he received a loan from a friend of $3000 and he had $2000 and was now asking me for $2000. I told him when we first started talking that I do not have any money just in case you turn out to be a scammer so don’t ask me. Needless to say I won’t be sending him any money.

I have a Philip Werner contacting me off LinkdIn and he is a cryptocurrency trader. 1st thing he asked is if I have ever invested. He looks very articulate, but his sentence structure lacks proper English. We've only done hellos, but I'm pretty intuitive and am blocking him immediately. He's single and says, "unborn child died in childbirth". I just wanted to reply to your post.

I think I have found one also on WWF2 and on HangOuts: Douglas Cuenca, lives and stationed in Texas, mother Patricia, daughter with sickle cell named Natasha. Says he has a sister in banking who can help pay me back for what I have paid out, now one savings account is being looked into for fraud. He always needs lots of iTunes cards so his mother can get cash for his daughters doctors appointments but he actually pays me back for them. I did a reverse image search and nothing came back, tried asking for a mil email address today (only has given me gmail ones). Does this sound familiar to anyone else?

"Soldier "contacted me, from Afghanistan. Stated he was an aviator, had seen my pic, and maybe we knew each other. I was a Colonels wife until 2014, thought perhaps he was one in our Brigade in Iraq. Stated he was from Mass, 30, no family, divorced. I asked to see his FB profile, He got off for awhile, said that's fine. Checked to see, but it was sketchy, or 2pics, and the info he gave me. He liked my pic, and I said I am 58, old enough to be his mom, and he must be looking at my friend. Next day, I asked if they needed anything, cookies, toiletries,...He said he would ask. I've been scammed once ,a year ago by phone, they continue to calll, Fake IRS, Loan, Grant, winner, and it all involved a gift card, for 300.00, with 10,000.or 5,000. Being deposited the next day. So Michael Thistle, said a fight had occurred, 8 dead, and wounded. Next day, he told me his Commander was letting come home if they had family, or friends they could go to. They won't do that in the Army, Ever!!!! And he needed money to come. So I reported him? To Facebook, Be careful people, just got another call from the Fake IRS, once those people get a hold of your info, despite changing my phone #, checking acct, email, they do not stop, non of them are english, and it will be a different cell phone everyday, with the name of the IRS, or cash advance, or United States Treasury, or Apple Inc, or nothing at all.

I have my mother n law she's 73 years old and I believe she's being scam by someone name Raymond Walters I know she has sent money before she's been staying with me. He wanting her to send money to a Emanual in Nigeria he's trying to get her to do Western Union said it was for hungry children he tells her that he's in England works for an oil company reasons for not coming one time he was held hostage and the other he was having passport problems. He keeps telling her he's gonna marry her but we all know he's a scammer. My problem is convincing her because once she goes home I can't stop the money I can now and he sure is pushing her to go home. I just don't know what to do to protect her after she leaves

So here’s my story.....I was on the verge of transferring USD 2700 to this guy who pretended to be a civil engineer working in a Syria for the United Nations, until i came across this site last night and confronted him. I met him on an Indian matrimonial site and began texting on whatsapp. His name, he said was Banerjee Deb Malya. Decent, good looking guy. He said that he lost both his parents in a road accident when was 6, and was raised by his uncle in Edmonton, Canada. Everything was fine until he asked me to take care his multiple flight fee, i.e- diplomatic flight from Syria to Istanbul and then, from Turkey to India. He said he would refund the amount to me as soon as gets access to his bank account which at the moment is frozen due to security reasons. I almost believed his story until he started paying too much emphasis on the fact that the account that would be used to transfer the money should be under my name. It came to point where he was being unreasonable and to some extent disrespectful towards me. Thats what prompted me to check online if there are other people in the world who’s a victim of this scam. Is there any portal where we can post pictures of these scammers?

Sounds like same guy I met
He went by Marc Robbo Robinson about 52 yrs old
Very good looking
Very poor scammer

My scammer is named Anthony Oliver, said he is from Ga.and has a 7 yr old daughter in boarding school. , But in Portugal on a work contract. Asked me to help him with 20,000 ...LOL!! Not an idiot !

Has anyone had an experience with any women from Golden Colorado starting a relationship and asking for money

Has anyone been scammed by a Nick Anderson, who lives in Houston Texas, works for American Red Cross, and is now in Berlin, Germany under contract

I have several experience on scammers, and one is still asking me to send money. He claimed to be running his own business as project manager in oil drilling ship building a platform but only will be paid at the end of project in Hawaii. Had only 2 short video calls as I kept asking about it. Always have excuse about poor signals but when he ask for money, the signal seems to work fine and he was able to make me feel guilty about it. It's been about 3 months and I have refused to send him money and he still keep trying.
They must really have a lot of time to keep pursuing this claiming the love and soon to be together forever promises. So hopeless romantic with american accent and very good vocab.
But I just never really 100% believe in him as many things appear to be really fishy.
The problem is you get attached to it and almost believing it and have feelings for them but the minute they ask for money, I was like....not again!!

Just scammed by Jeffery Harris. He claimed to be a widower, army veteran and drilling engineer for chevron. He had pics and videos to verify so I believed him. He needed money for demurrage fees on oil rig. He planned to relocate to CT from Ohio. Don’t fall victim to this loser.

was scammed by someone rcently, different name than your but it stood out when you mentioned demurrage fees. It is not a commonly used word and my guy said something about having to pay those fees also.just wondering if it could be same guy.Very smooth talker.

A friend of mine met a Philippine woman while walking his dog, he had just lost his wife. She said she has a friend that also lost their parter. So she set up a Skype so they could meet .the women was in the Philippine. To make the story short, over a short period of time,he has sent her $17,000.00 ,reasons were her mother wanted to visit her village,her son needed money and so on. The money was sent western union and every time he went the women that introduced Them will go with him. Not sure how to tell my friend this might be a scam. He is talking about marrying her. So has also sent money to help her get a visa.

A woman wants me to send 200.00 for medical treatment and i am leary of doing it she wants it sent in a money gram saying she has sent money to her mom

I met a guy on Plenty of Fish, Alec Eugene Hanks. He says he is divorced and is a mechanical engineer and real estate investor. Talking for about a month, he asked me for ITunes card for his daughter. Like a fool I gave it to him even knowing it sounded fishy. Now he wants me to open a bank account - checking and savings. He claims to be not far from me working in a remote secured area on a contract where he cannot leave. His job is due to end in September when we are to meet for the first time. He also asked me to create a job posting for him for a personal assistant.

Kate Ayomide has anybody heard of this name

What about a guy calling himself Phillips Hamilton, a doctor from Estonia originally, doing human trafficking rescues per him...iTunes cards, cash requests, mailing a large check to me, stuck in customs in China with gold..

My husband is destroying our marriage by sending money to Janey Andrews who is supposedly a Nurse Practitioner working for the UN in Massachusetts General. She is telling him she never got paid and is looking to receive over 300k in back pay. He is also talking with Tara Rodriguez who proclaims he is her destiny and is in love with him. I am unsure of the amounts he is sending these women but I know it is in the thousands. Originally Janney was a Bitcoin dealer because she was only making 7.00 he as nurse practitioner
I have tried to convince him both of these are scanners but he gets angry with me and takes his entire check and sends to one telling me he is in love with her.
Needless to say I have filed for divorce and he is pitching a royal fit about child support and paying court ordered bills, ie truck note, auto insurance, and his part of cell phone.
Boy is he going to be a lonely man sending his entire retirement to online scanners.

Today I had been texting through Facebook, a neurosurgeon that is helping people in Yemen..hes a widower for 15 yrs has a 15 yr old son, he needs me to send him $985 for his sons tuition. His son lost his bank card..I sent him solutions and he was very indignant. I told him I was unable to help. He stopped communicating. Whew.. missed the bullet..

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