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Online love asking for money? It’s a scam.

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While plenty of successful relationships begin online, scammers also use online dating sites, apps, and chat rooms to trick you into sending them money. These imposters create fake profiles to build online relationships, and eventually convince people to send money in the name of love. Some even make wedding plans before disappearing with the money. It’s a big problem: reports to the FBI about online romance scams tripled between 2012 and 2016, and imposter scams were among the top reports to the Federal Trade Commission for both the general population and the military community.

These scams can take a military angle with imposters stealing servicemembers’ photos to create phony profiles. They might claim to be servicemembers who can’t get into their accounts overseas or who need money fast. The first sign of a scam is an online love interest who asks for money. But the Army’s Criminal Investigative Service (CIS) says that the military doesn’t charge servicemembers to go on leave, get married, communicate with their family, go online, or feed and house themselves on deployment. We have also heard of scammers re-using servicemembers’ photos again and again, so it can be helpful to do some online research on the love interest’s name, photos, and details to check the story out.

If an online love interest asks you for money:

  • Slow down and talk to someone you trust. These scammers want to rush you, often professing love right away; or pressuring you to move your conversation off the dating site.
  • Never wire money, put money on a gift card or cash reload card, or send cash to an online love interest. You won’t get it back.
  • If you sent money to a scammer, contact the company you used to send the money (wire transfer service, gift card company, or cash reload card company) and tell them it was a fraudulent transaction. Ask to have the transaction reversed if possible.
  • Report your experience to the dating site and to the FTC.

For Military Consumer Month, share this video to help military consumers steer clear of online romance scams.

 

 

Scam Tags:  Romance Scams

Comments

Anyone know a highly ranked US Marine officer in Afghanistan called Kendrick Lovelace? Or one based in Kuwait or Syria called Johnny Buster?

I feel stupid. I have been chatting with a guy name Steven Armstrong do you know anything about him always asking for money says in Africa.

What does this guy look like? do you have a picture?

I met a guy named Steve Armstrong on a game site. Says he is military in Afghanistan. Pretty sure he is scammer. Wanted to know what eventually happened in your situation.

He is goiñg on the fàme site . I feel bad for the guys picture they are using

Oh my Gosh, the same thing happened to me. Was his name Nicholas J Townsend? The so called diplomat was David Geary and he was stuck in Italy with the pkg. I sent him money like a jerk. I lost money too.

Do you have a name? Someone is trying to do this to me as well

I had the exact same person do this to me. By the sounds of it it is definitely the same guy. He gave me the same story!

Thank you as always for your very informative newsletter. Because of your newsletters, I have not been scammed and I pray that I am never scammed. I am 72 years old and I always urger the elderly to sign up for your newsletters. Thank you in advance for caring

I am getting a lot of women bothering me on Hangouts and messenger. they are always in guianna taking care of sick family members. I no sooner delete 10 ten more comes on

I was scammed by a man who goes by James Adams from Houston, Texas he claimed. Also uses name Thomas Smitherman.

How does one spoof a number? Why can't we stop spoofing?

I have been in the same boat as most of everyone on here. I too didn't want to believe it, but it finally sunk in. Yes, I have beaten myself up over it, now having to look into bankruptcy because I am in that much debt from everything that happened. Please anyone who thinks otherwise, read these comments that are being posted. They are telling you exactly what can happen if you fall for this type of scam. Protect yourself as much as possible.

I was scammed out of $33k by a guy calling himself Casey Oliver. He found me on Instagram and we moved our convos over to hangouts. He claimed to be a 1st class Sargent in the Army serving in Afghanistan. His wife died from lung cancer and has an 8 year old daughter. I fell hard for him. The only proof I had was the pics he sent me. He was restricted from video chats, phone calls, and taking selfies. He needed the money to release his luggage from holding and once the luggage was released he can retire. He claimed that all his investments were in that luggage, over $600k worth.
He claimed to love me right away and at first I was skeptical about it but he was definitely good at manipulating me and got the money. Now I’m looking at bankruptcy and losing everything I’ve worked so hard to get after my divorce!! I feel like the stupidest person ever!! I hope he gets what he deserves!!

I can relate to this. May 17 2020 i met a guy online. He was so very nice to me. I am dreaming of a happy marriage and he promised me..sending me sweet words. He was very romantic. On our 3rd day of chatting he got my real name,address and phone number. We officially in a relationship. We talk about our future After few days he messaged me he said that he sent money not through bank but he sent it through logistic company by parcel and will arrive my country May 25, 2020. After 3 days a woman from the logistic called me that they have the package and i need to pay for the shiipping fee. I refused to pay but my man got angry because he said i will for the shipping because he dont want to loose his money.
So i have no choice i sent money to the logistics. After 1 day the logistic called me again that they said they detect money in the parcel and i need to pay for the money laundry demand of the custom. I got loan just to pay for that. The next day the logistic again called me that another payment demand from the custom for the penalty. I sent again. The next day another demand and they threatened me that my sender will be reported to the police if i will not pay for the 15 dollars custom demand.
Another demand was tax declaration until it reaches to the point that i have nothing. In an instant my sender give up the package and said he lost his 1 million dollars. Because i said i have no more money to pay for the demand. I realized i was already a victim of a scammer. I beg the scammer to give my money back i cried so much. I cant even sleep. I lose appetite. Now i was so very down. It seems like i want to end my life. I have nothing and i got so many debts. I want to kill my self now because of what happened to me. My man i was inlove with still talking to me and pretend his innoscent. But i do believe hes part of that scam activity. He promised to help me but after 2months. But i dont know if i will believe him. Now he claimed he has a cancer. What if after two months of waiting to refund all my money he tell me that he gonna die. I was so down now. I do not know if i will solve my problem. I want to die now.

I got into the same situation that you got. It’s so sad we are the victims of all the scammers try to take advantages out of our lonely living condition need a real love to live a good life afterward. It’s so sad , we need to speak up to let someone out there to be alert so they will prevent the disaster can happen to them .

If you get involved into some FB date or make friend on line, do not talk about your financial status, do not give out the email address, your home address, your name’s details, your phone number. Just talk on messenger. If you cannot talk to them don’t ever trust them. That’s all I can say.

Anyone who is chatting to Freedom on hangout? He ask money to someone I know, big amount and for supposed to be for airline ticket for emergency so he can go home in America. But I read here military doesn't charge members to go on leave, I suppose even emergency leave, right? I ask Freedom if he has SSN or FIN and he doesn't even know what are those, unbelievable.

same here I researched there's no charge for Military leave and no need the third party to apply for that, I fell in love with this man so much I would believe him but the fact is telling me I can't believe him.. It's very heartbroken .

Wang. What was his name? I just went thro with an andy morales that he needed me to sign some paper work in order for him to come home from his deployment in Germany

I’m currently on Hangouts with Jack Fredom. He’s demanding an eBay card,and has sent pictures of kids that were killed in Syria. I’m trying to figure out who the pictures are that he sent me. I was playing WordWars with him.

I was speaking with a man for 3 week said me was in the military then start saying he was shot. And needed me to get him out. Ask me to write to a captain to help him get out. when I did they said they would but it would cost me money. When I asked how much it was 10,000euros. I contacted the US army criminal division website and reported it. But he will not stop messing with me. He even called my work place and told them stuff that almost got me fired.

I think I'm being scammed by someone who calls himself Michael William,says he is a sergeant in dutch army.

I have met a Michael williams from Ohio, an engineer working in the uk. Just wondering if the same person

Hey that is the same guy that has been trying to get me to send him money for his vacation letter. He says he is Mike William.. a General Surgeon for the UN. From London and his wife died in a car accident three years ago.

I stay away from online data sites since I've heard that they don't really monitor who joins. Better to either meet someone in a social setting among people you know or have someone that you know and trust to set you up with someone that they know and trust. Don't be in too much of a rush to get hitch. It's safer that way.

About ten years ago I met this guy on Facebook from France (I don't recall his name now) but he expressed interest in me and I talked to him a bit. Eventually he started saying he loved me and that he owned a store in Paris and wanted to send me some merchandise which consisted of clothes and shoes. I agreed and I gave him my address and phone number so he could send the items. A couple of days after I received a shipment notice that looked legit, I got a phone call from an alleged customs agent in Malaysia that said the package was flagged and searched and the it contained cash money (Euros) which violated international law and for a 1000 dollar fine, they would send me the package. I contacted the guy on Facebook and he said that he had put money in the package and he would pay $500 and I had to pay the other half. He gave me the name and number of a person in a Middle Eastern country, not Malaysia where the call allegedly came from, and said I had to wire it there. Needless to say I didn't pay it since I realized I was being scammed. I didn't report it and now I realize I should have since these people have probably done this many times to many people. You have to be careful out there.

Two days ago I was in the same situation I was scammed they said I must send R8000 then I started to be worried and realised that this is a scam from now on I don't talk to anyone on FB inbox. I have learnt a lesson

I live in Tucson, Arizona and I have been on the Bravo Base and VOP Alpha Team page and neither seem legit. They continuously ask people for gift cards and supplies. I have heard numerious versions which all end up with Veterans in the hospital after injesting expired food or the unsanitary conditions of the camp. Rodents are infesting the camp and no one, not the civilian or military is willing to intervene. Please don’t give them your hard earned money, it’s not going to the vets, it’s going to the Methed up Command. Yours, Allie

As many of you have put it, just invest a little time and asks questions, and the truth - or at least the lies, will be revealed. Be Smart.

Anyone recognize the name Steve Arthur as he uses that name. Says he works for the United Nations, is a doctor, wealthy and madly in love with me. Wants to come back to bus to marry me, his adorable queen, says he's in Yemen but I traced his call to Ghana. I've sent him money for his son, iTune cards, hold chain, now he has a box full of money he wants to send to me. I had to send money to a diplomat for storage in Heathrow airport in England. He sends pics of himself but I haven't seen it on any websites. He wants more money to get home and I had to borrow. Has 2 kids in US in boarding school anyone know him?

@Mexixo49 would you mind sharing photos of him? Or at least describe what he looks like?

tall dark handsome says is a Captain in Mexico Border. born and brought up in Houston TEAXS

If it is who I think it is, he also uses the name James Arthur and says he has one son,Alex, in boarding school in Texas. Other than that his story to me is identical to yours..

I’m talking to one now who was supposed to be in the army and in Afghanistan. He was set to retire in October. It’s always been send funds for a replacement, then documents, the airfare. Finally supposedly made it to New York and was being held. Had to pay for time in New York then it was a few for this and a few for that. Said he is from the Houston area. Has a son who is in boarding school while he is away. His wife died four years ago. It’s just him and his son. Blah blah. Has no family. He goes by the name of Derek Shultz. He has sent many pictures. And they are personal pictures too. I have googled the images and nothing shows up. Hmmmm

I met a man named John Cage or John Robinson. The story is identical except he had a daughter but no family and his wife whom died 3 years ago.. He got burned and banged up He was in the hospital and needed money for food and now a plane ticket because he has to fly home as a civilian Because of the secret mission

I think the same guy is contacting me. It started on What’s Up App and then he sent a Instagram request. Said his name is Derrick but his Instagram name is Mike Schultz. He indicated he’s working overseas and has 2 sons. One that lives with him and another here in the US.

Sounds like the guy trying to get ITUNES cards out of me. Dr. on a cruise line. Has a 15 year old son. Widowed lives in FL. Went by Jayden Martins Sparks. I google everything he is a ghost. He is an older man, every handsome. He should be stopped. I didn't sent him anything, but I know there are women that will

I've been scammed by a guy claims to be in hospital in Afghanistan and was hurt in a bus accident going to the airport. He claims he loves me and wants to be with me forever. He needs money to get home because the flight home was increased in price. I've already sent him $1600 for flight and at least $1000 more in iTunes cards to communicate with me. I never talked to him on phone even though he calls me,we communicate by Hangouts. Is this definitely a scammer? His name is Roger Carpenter and claims to be an engineer with the government and a captain in the Army. Beware of him

Anyone scammed by Matt Daniels. Photo of him in a khaki uniform standing in a kitchen?

Is photo of MattDaniels left arm colorful tattoos? Could be an older photo with no tattoo? Probably same half Italian, half American Orthopedic Surgeon that’s trying to scam me. Please reply. Thanks

Same one with colorful tattoos. One photo with cat and one photo with dog. Orthopedic Surgeon Doctor working for Military on contract. Exactly the same

Someone I know has been talking with a Matt Daniels the past few months, and he fits this description perfectly. How has he been scamming people? Has he asked anyone for personal info or money?

I have been emailing a Matt Daniels orthopedic Surgeon sent to Syriah, wants to send me $ to My acct to send to his son in Military school??? Pics have Tattoos met on POF he did facetime me looked real enough. says he wants to send 10.000 to my acct that I can send his son???

I've been talking with someone by the same name and profession. Hasn't asked for anything as of yet. I'm not sure how to handle. I wish there was a way to exchange more information.

I’m talking to a guy name Glover Luis and sounds like the same man you all are talking about. Nice Body, left full of colorful Tattoos.

He looks Asian but keeps telling me he is from Brazil. And he has 12 year old son. And his wife died of cancer. I knew if BS!! But I like our Conversation. And we have been talking since the end of July. Up until now.

This man done tried everything.to get money me . First it was those Steam cards the he graduated to back loan, Talking about waiting for his Benefits to get in there he said he works for the CIA and he was supposed to come home to be with me, but he can’t leave because of the money he owes for the Apartment. Oh and he is asignment is in Istanbul Turkey.!! Might be the same man!!

Hi I believe I’m talking to this person you posted about he’s going by David Medina but also gets called Donnie

Would love more ingredients, I feel like I'm in this situation now

Anybody heard of Marco Antonio Jackson? He is from LA, his family is from Monterrey Mexico. He has a daughter named Wendy and his ex wife used up all of his money while he is away on a mission. He is very handsome, tan and tall.

Be on the lookout for a Sgt. Daniel Jason Cooper supposed to be in the U.S Army stationed in Chad and supposedly His MOS is CID 40 Years Old with a Son who's 6 Years Old and supposedly very sick with life threatening illness. He played the heartstrings and sympathy card about his son boy did I fall for his crap, but I did my own investigation . These scammed are linked here in the U.S too Don't let them fool you! I have everything I need to nail him to the wall along with his accomplices. I hope they all pay for what they've done.

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