In the past series of posts, (see first, second, third and fourth), I’ve explored the seedy topic of romance scams and how scammers operate. I’ll tell my own story of poor choices and being sucked into the quagmire of a scammer’s lies next time, but for now, if you want to know where to read more, look below.
If you want to read more about being targeted or victim’s stories
Author, Sofija Stefanovic, investigates the topic of scamming and support groups, as well as the moving individual stories behind the scams in her book You’re Just Too Good To Be True. The tragic story of Bill was infinitely sad:
“Bill, like millions of other people around the world, joined an online dating site and met someone. After a while, his long-distance lover asked Bill for a small amount of money. This wasn’t a big deal: friends ask each other for loans all the time – credit cards expire, bills get too high, rent is increased. Bill, a generous person, sent the small sum through without raising an eyebrow.
“Then his significant other needed some more money. The situation escalated, and, over several years, Bill became involved in a horrific tale of love, death and crime, all the while sending money to a growing cast of characters. When he began to suspect he was being conned, Bill was contacted by police, who assured him they were about to catch the scammers (they were, in fact, scammers themselves). A manager at Barclays bank was holding onto the money Bill was owed (also a scammer).
“Bill had lost all of his savings, mortgaged his flat and borrowed money from friends. He was sending his pension away as soon as he got it, in the wild hope that he would, one day, get his money back. He was scammed out of more than $80,000. It left him an emotional wreck, and drowning in debt.
“Bill was eighty years old. He’d been a participant in scams for much of his life. A self-described ‘gay person looking for companionship,’ Bill attracted bullying young men who soon demanded vast sums of money from their ‘silver daddy’.
LinkedIn scams – see:
Online dating romance scams – see:
- New York Times – https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/27/well/elderly-romance-scam.html
- How to get help https://www.cyber.gov.au/acsc/individuals-and-families/recover-and-get-help
- Dating sites scams list – https://www.izito.com.au/ws?q=dating%20site%20scams%20list&asid=iz_au_gc0_02&abt=1&mt=b&nw=g&de=c&ap=&kid=kwd-297220911522&aid=61284075768&ac=677&gclid=CjwKCAjwi_b3BRAGEiwAemPNU0fFs9KMImh22NlKL-0IZM8KmK16-DnOtRlEX5YNQPZ1IXS61yvCghoCLhkQAvD_BwE
- A cautionary tale – https://www.nbcnews.com/better/lifestyle/looking-love-online-romance-scammers-steal-your-heart-steal-your-ncna1135766
- Military scams – https://www.military.com/spouse/military-life/military-romance-scams-are-you-target.html
- Coronavirus romance scams – https://www.bbc.com/news/business-52664539
- Forbes anatomy of a scam – https://www.forbes.com/sites/ajdellinger/2019/11/25/anatomy-of-a-scam-nigerian-romance-scammer-shares-secrets/#478b56fb7638
- A British scamming victim talks https://www.bbc.com/news/av/uk-34942874/romance-scam-victim-it-s-like-being-a-puppet
- Fake (A startling true story of love in a world of liars, cheats, narcissists, fantasists and phonies) by Stephanie Wood – not about a romance scam as such, but still a woeful tale of being conned during an 18–month relationship https://www.penguin.com.au/books/fake-9780143792208
- LOVE FRAUD, which focuses on an unlikely alliance formed by several American women who were conned by their supposed online ‘boyfriend’. He was an average American Joe who got his kicks from manipulating and love-bombing women – and it wasn’t even really about the (smallfry) money. Very similar to my Catfishing story. Check out the article if you’re interested or look for it on Stan.
If you have something to add to this topic, please share your story or opinions in the comments or via my personal contact form.
And remember, never send money to someone you have never met.