Internet dating scam crime list
And many of the scammers aren’t even in the United States.“In the process of going back and forth, a scammer is going to try to figure out what makes a person tick, what their vulnerable spots are,” said Jenny Shearer, an FBI spokeswoman.“Because a victim has legitimate feelings, they might be inclined to offer financial support for this person.”For Best, it all started when she signed up for a free online dating site called mingle2.A man calling himself "John" messaged her and through daily phone calls and messages on Facebook, he gained her trust.
Her new boyfriend had a complicated backstory: He was an American soldier serving in Iraq, and he had a son living in Ghana.
"I left my heart out there, and this guy took advantage of it," the 51-year old Best said.
In 2011, the FBI's Internet Crime Complaint Center received 5,600 complaints from victims of so-called "romance scammers" -- criminals who scan online dating sites, chat rooms and social networking sites for potential victims.
While the victim may become suspicious overtime, the scammer lures them in with pictures, hardships, promises, excitement, and claims of love.
Eventually, the scammer will ask for help, for various reasons, involving the victim sending money.
But she had revealed to her new online beau how much she wanted children, and soon his 14-year-old son was emailing her.