Online dating money scams
(The FBI says it may be embarrassing for victims to report this type of fraud scheme because of the personal relationships that are developed, 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 Romance Scams, a watchdog site and online support group.
According to a recent Consumer Reports 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 David Farquhar, Supervisory Special Agent with the FBI.
In many occasions the scammer may have primed the victim by previously telling you all about their fake mom, son daughter etc and the victim may have even spoken to the fake mom, son daughter etc on the phone or by email.
This is a ploy to gain greater sympathy from you when they reveal that “mom” will die in 24 hours unless you send the funds for an emergency operation.
We strongly recommend never sending any money to anyone that you meet online, don't even send money to buy a postage stamp…not a cent…zilch, nada.
Remember when the money sending stops the scamming will too.
Shortly later they will tell you they need additional money for a passport, visa fees, transportation to the airport and miscellaneous expenses.
They will then suggest that you send them the money so they can purchase a plane ticket.
In this scam the scammer will contact the victim and explain that either they or some close family member has had some tragic accident or medical emergency and will die or suffer grave consequences unless you send them enough money to pay for the medical fees.
Typical scenarios include traffic accidents, brain hemorrhages, heart attacks, kidney operations etc.
In another variation the Filipino lady may ask the victim to send money so she can hire a private room in an internet café. In the final variation of this scam the Filipino lady may explain that she is a student and is moonlighting as a webcam girl at an adult chat site.
The Filipino lady sends the user a link to an adult chat site and states that the service is free and a credit card is only needed for age verification.