Obviously, these videos are stolen, too. There are multiple YouTube videos on how to do it. Virtual Cam Whores , a service that creates customizable video, can also add a layer of authenticity. For example, if the victim asks for a kiss, the scammer can command the image on the screen to blow a kiss. Still, some would argue, how can so many people mistake what is a prerecorded video for a live webcam?
The answer is as nontechnological as it gets: Victims must be willing to suspend disbelief. Criminals have also used the services of pre-digital age businesses to help their scams flourish. Western Union employees have even been accused of knowingly participating in those scams. The Justice Department will handle the returning of money. The process for filing a claim has not yet been established.
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- Faking it — scammers’ tricks to steal your heart and money.
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They essentially fell in love with a photo and turned a blind eye to their own doubts and suspicions, many told HuffPost. They ignored obvious red flags: Victims believe because they want to believe, experts said. A study in the U. They may have successful business or professional careers. But the study said they tend to be unduly open to persuasion by others and less able to control their emotions. Whitty, the cyberpsychologist, found that many victims were survivors of abusive relationships.
To preserve the relationship, they became good at explaining away, or simply refusing to remember, the actions that hurt them. We need to be on our guard both for ourselves and for our friends and family. This ability to suspend disbelief is one reason that con artists prefer to focus on people who have fallen for scams in the past.
If you have any worries that something might be a scam … it very likely is. The subjects of romance scams are often blamed for their own victimization. The victim-blaming is something that needs to change, said Jan Marshall of Australia, a victim herself who now advocates for others through her website Romance Scam Survivor.
Nobody signs up to be preyed upon. There is a small body of research indicating that fraud victims experience post-traumatic stress disorder on par with those who have suffered from violent crime. They develop depression and psychological trauma. Some have attempted or died by suicide. And some get angry enough at having been scammed that they fight back. The internet is ripe with scam-catchers hoping to educate the public about the dangers out there and spare others from being victimized.
Some former victims find empowerment in scam-baiting, a practice in which they lure scammers and then play along as if they were being fooled. It has an active forum where baiters can swap stories, and it has been recommended on Facebook more than 18, times. This past February, a federal judge in Illinois handed down a year sentence to Nigerian national Olayinka Ilumsa Sunmola, a year-old scam boss based in South Africa, for his role in multiple international romance scams from to After he was indicted in the U.
He pleaded guilty to all eight counts of the indictment on March 2, , following two days of trial. The government has no way of knowing how much money Sunmola and his associates ultimately stole, the U. He owned at least four homes in South Africa that were sold so he could pay his victims. His crimes forced at least three women to file for bankruptcy. Several more lost their jobs and their homes and were left in financial ruin. A few had even purchased wedding dresses. Two told the court they had seriously contemplated killing themselves.
For at least two of the women, the abuse was sexual as well: Sunmola stole pictures of their naked bodies that he used to extort money from them and then posted those images online for anyone to see, said the U. Whitty testified that the victims had suffered severe psychological damage. Perhaps what they say is true: Love is the strongest drug. If you think you have been or are being scammed, you can send your complaint to the FBI. An earlier version of the story said Nigerian scamming networks did much of their work out of internet cafes due to the high cost of online connections.
Language has been updated to note that several federal agencies were involved in the Western Union settlement. News Politics Entertainment Communities. Opinion HuffPost Personal Videos. He said he originated from Rome, Italy, and migrated in the U. He is divorced and has a 12 year old son who is being taken care of by his housekeeper in Brooklyn New York while he is away.
What a smooth talker. In a matter of days, he tells me that he loves me and that he wants to marry me. His fake name is Eric Coss.
Faking it — scammers’ tricks to steal your heart and money | Page 12 | Consumer Information
He laughed at it, and told me I was so sweet. When I refused, and told him that he was camming me, he got mad and told me that I hurt him and that he will hurt me too by posting my Naughty pictures in the internet. So I said I will find money to send to him. All of a sudden he was loving again. Changed my name and passwords. I cannot believe I was so stupid to fall for this. Was his surname morales from San Antonio in Texas? Wife died last year in August. His patents both died when he was Brought up by his uncle. Grew up in Oklahoma.
Son aged 10 daughter aged 8. I have been speaking with someone from nigeria! He goes by the name Alex Phillip. He said that he was from Italy and has a 7 year old son! I know this doesn't fit in with your comment but I couldn't see where to start a new thread by asking a question. I have known a wonderful man who is 30 years my junior. We have been chatting and Skyping almost every day for 7 or 8 years. He lives in Pakistan. We have been talking about the possibility of marriage so that I can get him to the United States.
The problem is we have never met face-to-face and that is a condition of getting a K-1 Visa. To me, if the Red Flags would have gone up, they would have gone up by now and they haven't. But before I spend the money to travel to Bangkok to meet him I would like to know if there is a way for me to check him out on the internet.
Dont be fooled he is playing you these giys realise we are waking up to their scam and are now trying new tactics. Has anybody ever been scammed by a guy going by the name of either Bryan Mars or Chris Mark? Now were trying to get her out of the financial mess.
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I was also scammed by a man claiming to be in the US military. He was stationed in Germany, but recently moved back to the states, Maryland. He asked for Itune cards and asked for money for his daughter. He claimed that he is a widower, he said that his wife died in a car accident 2 years ago in a car that he had bought for her on her birthday. He speaks with an accent, stating that his mother is South African and his father is German. We became friends on Facebook and I want to report this so bad, but I don't know how? The information you give will go into a database that law enforcement uses for investigations.
You can report the account to Facebook, and if you sent money by wire transfer you can report that to the wire transfer company. He had a daughter, Michelle, age 10 at the time back in , that lives with a grandmother. His wife Melissa died in a car accident. His parents Minnie and Patrick were also killed in a car accident. He said part of his childhood was in in Germany where his mother was a paralegal and father was a construction type worker. His home state was Dallas North Carolina. Embarrassingly, I sent money, but later, through scammdigger, google search I found the real name of the person in the pictures that were sent to me by the scammer.
He uses the number which is a Non VOip nontraceable number and email williamsjohn yahoo. NEVER send any money to someone you've never met in person and do not know it will always be a scam. I met a guy on Match, said he is France on a construction job. Yes he is an engineer.
Need money to pay his employees, hotel and now food. He states he is from Peru. Mine he told me hes , beard and moustache. Works as an engineer, needed money to employ 10 more people, to pay for his accomodationa and foods. His business was in a battel as a result of crisis with his partner. He got his fb. Maybe we can share his fb accounts and pictures to check if hes genuine or not.
See, that’s what the app is perfect for.
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10 Ways to Avoid Fraud | Consumer Information
We expect participants to treat each other and the bloggers with respect. We will not post comments that do not comply with our commenting policy. We may edit comments to remove links to commercial websites or personal information before posting them. Comments submitted to this blog become part of the public domain. Also, do not use this blog to report fraud; instead, file a complaint. The FTC is closed due to the lapse in funding. Federal Trade Commission Consumer Information consumer.
Share this page Facebook Twitter Linked-In. July 15, by Aditi Jhaveri. They ask you to: Sammi1 October 23, reply. Computer Smart June 24, reply. DahliaLane July 14, reply. Green eyes August 5, reply. Hi you said the guys name was Robert did he give you a surname and what does he look like please. Sue August 10, reply. Hi name to me was Robert Smith. Kathy August 12, reply. His name to me was Robert Earl Scott. Bella August 13, reply. Angie May 7, reply.
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