Monday, November 4, 2013

Are you ready to pay $500,000 for your online love story?

$500,000 (CAD) was the price that a Vancouver man paid for his love to an online scammer. The money he cashed in included a part of his retirement savings.

The police have started the investigation and even arrested a fraud who turned out to have operated this scam out of the capital of the UK. According the UK police, there is a slight possibility of recovering the money.

Canada's CBC News also joined the investigation. They reported about the man “Tony” (the pseudonym) who got acquainted with a man on one of dating sites. Very soon their friendly communication turned into torrid love affair which moved to Yahoo to be continued. 

In some time Tony’s online love started writing messages about his urgent need in cash. He seemed to be in Malaysia without any access to money. In his messages the man complained about lack of cash to pay bribes to local authorities. Being deep in love, Tony was eager to give a hand to his online boyfriend. Even the huge amount of money (half a million dollars!!!) didn’t raise his concerns. Only some time later Tony started to suspect something unusual and made a decision to rebut the scam. He hired investigators to find the fraud. Thus, Tony’s online love turned out to be a band operating in the suburbs of London.

The high growth of popularity of online dating sites has caused the growth of online scams. Nowadays online dating is an accepted norm of our life. These sites usually appeal to people who prefer quick and easy meeting a potential partner.

Online scammers use human need in communication and love as a weapon to get money. They get acquainted with members of dating sites and social network offering them communication or even sex.

The increase of online dating sites causes the growth of online scammers who take advantage of needs and weaknesses of humanity.

Another thing that scammers hunt for is personal information that people post on their dating profiles. This is so called for identity theft and spear-phishing which has turned into a profitable business recently. The world knows the story about scammers who were imprisoned after netting over $1 million posing as military staff overseas.

Another popular trick that online scammers use to skunk is the story about life and death situation they turned out to be. One day a victim can get an email that their online partner has been stuck alone without any money in a foreign country. Moreover, he (she) has had difficulties with local authorities or has been robbed, thus, the only way out is if the victim send necessary amount of money urgently.

Tony is not the only one who took the bait. Every year unwary love-hunters lose as much as Tony did. Romance scams have created an enormous system of looking for victims on dating sites.

Thus, logging in on the next dating sites or starting a new online love story , make sure you want to be the next victim. An even you are certain that this person you chat every day is sure to be the Mr Right, never send any money to him. As soon as you get a letter like “ I’ll be very thankful to you if you send me some cash for plane tickets”, or “if you send us a few hundreds, we will free up a million dollars for you”, break any links to this person.

And even if it is the person you do know very well, check carefully if it is really he who is writing these emails to you. The only way to avoid being cheated by online scammers is to use your brains rather than feelings and emotions. Nothing can defend you better than a sceptical mind and caution.

Also, we recommend you to read a little investigation about attempts to cheat on The results were unpredictable.

1 comment:

  1. Hi, I am Gerard Prescott and I turned to a hacker called Snooper Toks ( works for a hacker group F Society Australia) earlier this year after losing $260,000 through an online dating scam.

    For the last 12 months all I've done is look for answers.

    I got the hacker to find the IP addresses, and I found an IP address in Nigeria and one in South Africa.
    I was tricked into sending the money after meeting who i thought was a Brisbane-based woman facebook account named Tamara Randle on a Christian dating website late last year.

    I reported the fraud to the Federal Government's Australian Cybercrime Online Reporting Authority (ACORN), but I did not get a response until six months later.

    I couldn't get the police to do anything.

    The information he gathered was fowarded to the Australian and international police to identify the scammers. We got their address, through a court you can subpoena this information, then you get a proper investigation and trail. The South African authorities helped pick him up less than half of my money was recovered. We couldn't get to his Nigerian accomplice in time.

    Do you know more about this story? Do you need to recover money lost to dating scams?


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