Guest Author - Vance R. Rowe
In a previous article, I talked about email scams, usually involving a Nigerian prince who wants to hide money in the victim’s bank account, with the promise of a share of the millions. Of course, the victim will eventually lose all of the money in their account.
This week I want to talk about the romance scam. The interweb is host to a plethora of dating sites. Some are legitimate, some are not. Some cost money while others are completely free. Of course, the romance scammers are not confined to the dating sites. They permeate the social media sites, Facebook in particular. The scammers, both men and women from other countries, will search out Facebook profiles for people who list themselves as single.
They will instant message someone and try to strike up a conversation and then tell the intended victims that they are very handsome or “very much beautiful.” These men and women will claim to be from the United States or from whatever country their intended victims reside. I am not familiar with these scams in other countries but I am sure they all happen the same way.
If someone messages you on Facebook or other social media outlets, immediately go to their profiles and look at them. If they are scammers, their social media profiles will be brand new. There will be a couple of choice pictures on there, no friends on their friends’ list, and no posting history except for pictures. They will also claim to be from the United States but their English grammar is poor. Not the normal poor grammar that we sometimes use but grammar like I already mentioned above, “you are very much beautiful.”
As the days and weeks pass, and the scammer has a victim hooked, they will start telling the victim that he/she is falling in love with them and want to marry them and start a family with them as well. Then an emergency will come up, such as, their car has broken down and they have no way to get to work so of course, the victim will offer to send them money to get the vehicle fixed. A family member is in the hospital and they need money for expenses. Finally, they tell you that they are coming to see you so their blissful lives together can begin. However, there is a problem with an airline ticket. They don’t have enough money to buy a ticket and tell you that they cannot come to see you until they raise more money. By this time the victim is so infatuated or in love, that they simply cannot wait. The victim offers to wire them the money for the ticket cost. The victims then sends the money and they never hear from their suitor again. Of course, these scammers are not only scamming one person but several at a time. Of course, If one victim is sending them money, then chances are that all of the victims are sending money to this one person.
Please do your homework, if someone is trying to involve you in a romance scam. Check out their profiles, pay attention to the grammar in your messages that you receive, ask your other single friends if someone is scamming them as well.
After you read this article, come into the crime forum and share any experiences that you or a friend may have had with a romance scam. I am sharing mine in there. Come and check it out.