Don't Take It From Us...

Online Dating IconWhen it comes to advice about online dating scams, you could listen to OnGuardOnline.gov. We have advice to help you protect yourself and your money.

But why not go straight to the source, too? Many online dating sites now offer really practical advice on how to avoid relationship scams. Here’s a sample:

“DON’T ever send money to someone you meet online, especially by wire transfer. Scammers often insist that people wire money, especially overseas, because it’s nearly impossible to reverse the transaction or trace the money.”
-Match.com

“If someone asks you for money, for whatever reason, do not do so and please, report the situation to us via the “Report a Concern” button. If somebody is asking you, they may be asking others, and your report can help protect other members.”
-JDate/Spark Networks

“Watch out for someone who immediately requests to talk or chat on an outside email or messaging service. Watch out for someone who reports a sudden personal crisis and pressures you to provide financial assistance.”
-eHarmony

These dating sites don’t want you to be scammed, and neither does OnGuardOnline.gov. They want you to meet a real someone, not a con artist hiding behind a bogus profile. Following the advice on these dating sites is a great place to start!

Comments

I have been scammed byb a man named Karl, claims he was in Benin for business and professed his love right away, asked for money a couple of weeks into it, then he started asking for money, and it was one situation after another, today he emailed me to tell me that he had been robbed, stabbed and had beeen in the hospital, I knew what was to come next he would have asked for money. Typical textbook scammer. I started wising up and looking at online dating scams. Met him on Chemistry.com, they claims they are not responsible but did give me my money back. we mainly cahtted thru yahoo messenger, he has a account listed as Karl, very handsome man, born in Germany, educated in England, claims mother lived in Lawrenceville, NJ also claimed have been divorced for 4 years and has a 9 year old daughter. He claimed not to have a facebook page but I found one he just started the week before one using spokeo.com and it was his picture. I emailed all of his friends this morning on their and now it has disappeared. He knows I am on to him and I am going to do what I can to get my money back and have this jerk dealt with. If you have suggestions on what to do please let me know and I also have pictures. I have notifed yahoo, and will send to every dating website if I have to. Please reply if you want to see pictures or have suggestions.

Yes, this certainly sounds like a "textbook scammer." The scam has many of the elements we often see: leaving the dating site to chat somewhere else, professing love right away, asking for money, and then asking for more money. To post your comment, I removed some of the personal details (like email addresses and full names), but if you'd like to file an official complaint you can do so at www.ftc.gov/complaint.

would like to see the pics as i am afraid i am being scammed too and maybe by the same guy,
Linda

Hi, Linda,

If you think you might be dealing with a scam artist, I wouldn't put much faith in a photo. These scammers often post phony photos. They also use bogus names and personal bios. The best way to spot a scammer is by how he or she acts. If an online love interest asks you for money, it's almost certainly a scam.

I believe i am being scammed by a man named henry, supposedly from ny, in benin working as an independant contractor, building a 4 star hotel in porto novo cotonou, he is supposedly born in germany, parents died in car crash when he was 12, an only child. He had to go live with his uncle in churchill pennsylvania. He has had trouble getting his loan money to get transferref to benin, ran out of money, got sick was in hospital, while waiting for loan money hotel bill was not paid, needed money for hotel, they supposedly downgraded his room, took all his nelongings until he could give them money. When the loan money came then needrd money to process loan in benin, then still couldnt get money until he received government clearance, thay of course needed more money, then when that eas ginally set, got his loanoney from bank, then there was an accident at the site a worker got injured, he had to pay the workers hospital bills, pay for broken equopment, for an rngineer to assess damage to building, then pay to fix building, ran out of money again, supposedly site was closed down by city due to the owner of the structure not having correct zoning, in the meantime he was going to come back to ststed and get finances in order and then go back when work could continue. He needed money to switch his tickey, then at airport the plane had technical problems, could not fly out, yhey put the people in hotel and were not able to fly them out for two days, then i get a call from some doctor saying there was a bad accident from the hotel to airport, 4 people in critical condition needed permission to treat henry, i told them to do what they had to to save him, he was bleeding profusely and was unconcious, then the doctor called back and guess what, he said bleeding undsr control, now needed money to proceed with treatment, 1200.00. I called embassy, they assured me it was a scam. I was told to send money to a victor yewenu, the doctor kept calling saying if no money sent henry would die. He is treating henry now supposedly has fracture lelvis and fractured leg, stitches in hand. I told henry embassy said it is all a scam, he insists he is really from ny and will be bavk here when he is better and then i will see, i said that is the only way i will be sure. Whenever he says dr needs more money and i say well i dont have money, he somehow gets sicker and neefs more treatment. Please beware, i spoke with henry for 3 months through all thos craziness, so i really thought he was real at first.

Hi, Rose,

This person is definitely a scam artist. Thanks for sharing your story. Hopefully, this will help others recognize the signs of a scam.

If you'd like to file a formal complaint with the FTC, you can do so at ftc.gov/complaint.

I meet somebody, and they dont ask me for money, they said somebody going to send me money and he want to i keep the money, i send the money later to him. i know this strange, i want to know if you know something about this. you hear about this before

Hi, Diana,

Yes, in another common version of this scam, the scam artist sends you money and asks you to put it in your account and then wire part or all of the money back. Usually, the money comes as a check -- a fake check. The check looks real enough to fool the bank teller, so you're able to deposit it and the money may even show up in your account -- for a while. A fake check can take weeks to discover, but once the bank realizes it's a fake, you will owe the bank any money you withdrew.

I almost had the same situation, I met someone thru one online dating, specifically match .com, his name was Richard, fortunately, I didn't send him the money, when he asked for money I was alert and I stop to have any kind of communication with him. That was terrible....

Was his name Richard Nelson?

I am trying to fix some things that were messed up but it get"s to be ridiculous at times and unnecessary when you cannot even trust the government people and technology.

That certainly sounds like a terrible ordeal that you went through, be more careful and always keep your guard up.

I met a 35 year old woman from Kansas City Missouri,or also could have been from Kansas City Kansas.We talked for approx two or three weeks when she wanted to come to my state to visit,she asked me for money to help her get here.I knew right then she was a scammer.please beware of ANYBODY ASKING FOR MONEY AS THEY ARE NO DOUBT A SCAMMER.

Alfonso Alonso, Dallas,Texas. Italian. My first time on match, so I wasnt very smart. This guy is typical, now that I have researched. A widow. Lost his wife to brain cancer. A civil engineer building a condo. Started emailing me in private. We talked on my cell phone. Immediate love and fate. Had to leave for Malaysia for the big business trip. We emailed for 30 days. On the 30th day, he asked me for 12,000.00 to cover a bad business deal, so he could get back home to me. I cut him off, but he tried several times to get me to wire him the money. Got hysterical and cried when I told him no. Be careful ladies. This guy is charming.

This sounds like the same guy that my friend has been talking with. Antonio-Italian-Houston Tx. He started talking with her on JDate and all of sudden told her he was getting off match site because he wanted to dedicate himself to her. His wife died 2 years ago from cancer and he has a daughter-Maria, that lives in London. He had to leave for business trip to Malaysia but would be home in about a month. He even sent her flowers for Christmas. Well he's' supposed to be home in a week but the plant he was working in had a small fire/explosion and now he needs parts that he can only get from the US. The parts are now 3 IPads that cost $880 each. He said his daughter can get him 1 but needed my friend to send the other two. Then he said something about needing 36K. WHAT??? Red flags have been going off since she started talking to this guy. His picture is this really fit man,handsome, grey hair with dark mustache. Looks like a hot Sam Elliott.

Someone I know just got taken by this same guy, we have photos. Would like to compare them to see if he is using same photos. please respond

I would love to see the pictures to verify whether it is the same man or not.

Alfonso Alonso, italian, dallas, Tx. Didnt get money from me but sure did try. Was definitely a scammer. Said he was a civil engineer, doing a condo in Malaysia. we were emailing and talking on the cell every day. sent me pics to show my family. all of a sudden he needed 12,000.00 to complete the job, so he could hurry and get home to me. Met him on Match, but he got me off there really quick. I had just joined. So he taught me alot about what to do and not to do. was a widow, parents died, no kids. Very charming. Watch out ladies, he is good and has good grammer also. wish I could show you pics, but its probably not him anyways.

Met Alfonso Alonso, Italian, from Dallas, TX, on Match.com at the end of October 2012. Was going to Malaysia to build a condo in Selangor. We were emailing, IMs, and talking twice a day for months until he was ready to come home and was in a car accident in March 2013. Broken leg, concussion, broken ribs, etc. Asked for airfare money to get home to me but supposedly was stopped by immigration at the airport for non payment of his workers and work visa overstay. Nice looking man and great build. Would love to see the pictures you have to compare to the ones I have. Yes he told me too that he was a widow, that his wife passed away from brain cancer in 2006, parents passed away recently, no children, and that he was an only child.

I met a man who claimed to be in the military goes by the name David P. He first asked me to send him a care package to some diplomat that would deliver it to him...The shipping cost twice as much as the stuff I sent..Later , he tried to say he was sending me something of value and had some guy calling me for a few days straight at 3am I have since shut my phone and changed the number..I am sure it would have just been a matter of time that this person delivering the package was going to need money..I didn't let it get to that point. I have pictures too. I have tried to contact the person in the pictures as in one of them the last name is on the uniform and I was able to find him on FB.. But he has not responded .I would be very upset if I come to find out this was a true military person trying to scam me...Still deciding if I should take it a step further and report the situation.

I met a woman through an online dating site, or at least claimed to be a woman. She went by the name Emily Hastings.Ive read other stories about online scams, and her story was textbook. She said she was living in the DC area,but had a trade show for Herbalife to do in London. Two days after the show, claimed to have been mugged, lost all credit cards etc. It just went on and on.The woman in the pictures looks hispanic, and claimed to have been born in Ecuador. She has a very anglo name, which supprised me, but then when I sent a message in Spanish, she did know what language it was, and actually thought spanish looked like french. It was all very bizzarre. Ive got probably a dozen pictures from her, as well as a Check from Herbalife with Emily Hastings name on it, which I believe is photoshopped. She claims to be stuck in London with all these bills to pay and needs me to send her money. She is persistant, but I keep telling her I know what shes up to. Im trying to figure out with the help of Herbalife who the woman in the pictures is. She is either part of the scam, or aquainted with the scammer, since the pictures appear to be current. Halloween party pictures, Christmas Pictures, etc...
Beware if you here the name Emily Hastings, this is a scam

I have been on dating sites for about 3 months. About 2 weeks ago a guy claiming to be Thomas Hannett, Captain in the military in Afghanistan contacted me by IM on Match. He asked right away to get on Yahoo IM. I created an account that didn't have my name so I would protect myself and signed in under that account. We chatted and did some emailing to my anonymous account.

After a week he was asking for my cell phone number so we could get to know one another better. I refused. We kept in contact and he said he was getting out of the army after a 38 year career in a couple of months. Also his birthday was April 10th. I asked him for his address (I was thinking I would send him a card). He immediately asked me if I was thinking I would send him a care package. I said that I might (think cookies). He gave me a list of 8 things he "needed" one of the items being a digital camera!

Thats when I knew it was a scam. I told him that I wasn't going to buy him a camera but he kept pressing me more about getting him one so he "could send me more pictures". I got offline and the next morning sent him an email telling him not to contact me again. At least that is one thing he got right, no contact since.

But what bothers me is that he is going to do this to someone else and it is probably pointless to even report it. I am so glad I am impeccably careful about my personal information and not giving out phone numbers. Now I don't know if its worth it to try and date online. I am totally suspicious of everyone!

So after reading some of the stories here I believe I`m IN the middle of a "scammer"

His name is Marc, i "met" him on match just as he was "signing off" because he didnt have time because of his traveling for "work". He saw that I emailed and "winked" at him. He emailed me back saying could i text him because he was deactivating his account! So I did! We had texted for a bit then he "traveled" for work 2 Afganistan and has been there ever since, at least 3 weeks! Siad he lived in a city 45 minutes from me, thats what the profile had said 2! He "is" a widower and has 2 children or so "i think" saw pictures, or did i????? Don`t know what 2 believe after these stories!!!!

So here`s the "scam part:after a bit he asked for"underware" 2 be sent to him... On a military base, private contractor working in Afganistan and left "unexpectidly fast" when WON a contract 4work! I said no! after a bit asked 4 money for his kids at his grandma`s...he didnt have time 2 "provide" 4them b4 he left....we had been talking 4a few weeks now, and YES he has claimed LOVE 4 me....:( He has at this point emailed me and WHAT a PEOT he is...or is he???? So i "wired" a little bit, I have kids i "felt" 4 him! few more weeks pass, work has had a SNAG and hes not coming back when he thought.... needs money can i send some! NO I TELL HIM STOP ASKING!!! He still claims 2love me even when i cant send money! I tell him I`M DONE he says sorry and he doesn`t want that! OF COURSE HE DOESN`T (specially if this IS a scam)!! Now work is coming 2 an end and he should b "home" soon! What do I believe?????!!!!texting is a bit less than it was but hasnt stopped....IF it stops before he`s "suppose" 2 come "home" i KNOW I`ve been scammed, BUT i haven`t sent any more and DON`T plan on it!!!! Just want this story out there!!!!!Marc Jordan! from Belarus...maybe it`s real???? am i an exception?

Hi, I'm sorry to say that your story has all the signs of a scam. He will almost certainly contact you again to ask for money or a favor. Don't take the bait! You can file a complaint at ftc.gov/complaint.

I just have one question,why does our government feel it has the right to spy on it citizens. And then use scare tatics to persuade us they are doing it for our protection? If were are not allowed information for national security reasons then my government is not allowed to listen into my private conversions or read my emails.This government is the one who is always getting us into situations we have no business doing. Stop being hypocrites we both this government and the people who stay silent about it are the real terrorists. We have nothing to fear but ourselves.

I was contacted by Ralph Herman, said he was an engineer, we talked on I'm, he eailed claimed to have lost wife in hurricane,, after 2 weeks he asked e fr 2,000 s so he can get home bcuz his job can't su him , I feel foolish watch out for him he aso says he has daughter n son in Germany gong to university
52

I was done the same but i sent no money after two weeks he asked for money so he can come home, claimed tobe a widow and name was ralph herman, researched found no such name, tried to blow up pictures but the name tage on thr person started with a J not an R, he claimed to be living in Cyprus and was coming home soon, well he texted me again, i did not answer and will not ehas not sent another email, glad i stopped wished i hadnt even started.watch out for him claims hehas two children a daughter named tracy andhe was from ge rmany

Been emailing. Guy in Sydney then he and his 7 the yr old went to Nigeria Africa yep scammed big time but I do think its a. More than one his contacts to I think he also is. Using. His. Daughter. As a soft touch to get to me , I trusted him and what got me sus picious. Was one day he was on face book the next day not i do know he is from darlinghurst s sydney he is on the voting form but he may not live there was the second one ,I lost I don't know what I don't care I don't want justice I want others warned yes a mr John alonso tope is a scammer and yes I blocked him so he can't email me ,and even changed me mobile no and phone no , but kicking my self DONT help me any ,he's smooth as ,a car accident on way to airport passport limit date nearly out dumb one any person makes sure before they fly out the passport has at least four or five years not two or three he has been there nearly two years ,his daughter Eva will be 9 in December .my stepdaughter showed me ways of birth death and marriages how tto change them but in feb or march she passed away August 31 and her funeral was September the 11 he thought it was funny me I ,I id and angry and I miss her and he can go and find someone else I. Not an ATM I told him then I got an email he wanted 8000 by XMAS and I said. No then I got called names not nice ones from a guy who said he loved me if that's love he saved me as no one tells me that when IVE not yet. Met them he saved me by showi g his true colours a lot. Ore heatache I don't need so please beware of this guy ,okay and also don't go for his looks as he is a charmer and knows it to ..... Thanks

I think I am being scammd by a man calling himself Ryan Meegan from Brookly New York. He claime he ia
in Benin on a construction contract with his daugher He has had one bad happening after another.
He continues toask me for help. He has of course proclaimed his undying love for me and wants to marry me as soon as he returns to the USA. Has anyone had any dealings with this man?

This definitely has all the signs of an online dating scam. It's very likely that Ryan Meegan is not his real name.

Well thanks to the internet, and being able to read all these, I know now I am being scammed by a woman, who supposedly left her children in Bekasi, Indonesia after her husbad died from a car crash. She said she could not get visas for her children so she had to go herself and try to bring them later. We have been talking through email for three weeks, and all then she had to go back to Indonesia to settle her husbands estate and was granted visas to bring her two children back with her. Then she told me she had bought some Iphone cards for her children to play games but had left them here and would I pick up one for them at Wallmart and email here the codes. I was leary, but I did send her a $50 card code. I guess its true a fool and his money are soon parted. Now she is supposedly in Benin to sell her husbands factory, but needs me to be a witness ( no idea what that means) and does not have money to go back to Bekasi.... Wow I cannot believe I have been scammed. I even found her on FB, and some of the pictures she sent me came from there. So much for the online dating for me.. From now on its in person or no thanks.

please help me immediately i dont have time to think but i font know to stop them

hi need help to anyone reading this right now please help me i dont know what to do i worry so much.this is the story.

I met a guy on Filipino friend finder .com he send messages to me then he ask my ym so i gave it,he said his working on a shift as head engine engr on cosco shipping,he said he will come in philippines before middle of this month but did not happen then he said again before end of this month not happen again and now his saying before end next month but there is a problem he said their ship encounter pirates so they change route then their at turkey port saying to change route to be at japan then fly here,but after saying there is pirate he ask me to help him receive his gold watch and money so i gave my whole name and address but after he send message that company need my payments before package delivery i said i dont have money but he beg so i help i send 4000 phil money converted to usd the payment needed was 500usd he said he talk to them to pay the balance if the package is with me like he said but after they got the money thay said they cant deliver without being fully paid AND I SAID I DONT HAVE MONEY TO PAY ANYMORE THEN HE SAID HE PAY THE 300USD AND THE REMAINING I WILL PAY BECAUSE HE CANT SEND MONEY ON THE SHIP THERE IS NO BANK,THEN LASTNIGHT THE DELIVERY REPLY TO ME CONFIRMING THEY RECEIVE THE 300USD AND I NEED TO PAY ONLY THE 110USD ,I SAID CANCEL THE DELIVERY ON MY NAME I DONT HAVE 110USD BUT THEY SAY THEY HAVE MY DETAILS AND THEY WILL REPORT ME TO INTERPOL IF I WILL NOT SEND 110,AFTER I SEND THAT THE TIME THEY WILL DELIVER THE PACKAGE.I KNOW ITS A SCAM I ALSO FEEL HE IS THE ONE DOING ITHE ALWAYS ASK ME WHEN TO PAY THE BALANCE BUT I AM AFRAID AND DON KNOW WHAT TO DO IF THEY WILL REALLY REPORT ME TO POLICE ,PLEASE TELL ME WHAT TO DO AND REPLY YO THEM FOR THEM TO STOP ME,THEY KNOW MY NAME MY PICTURE MY HOME IT MAKES ME WORRY.THANK YOU

Any one familiar with these names? Dave buckner...larry thorne... Michael Mancini... All from chemistry.com two asked for money.. The third was having the same pattern. Never sent them anything... Larry got angry and called me selfish...a liar.. And told me he was very hurt that i wouldnt help him... I need to report this.

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