Beware, the Foreign Relationship Scammer
Guys, if you aren’t telling your wife or girlfriend that they are beautiful, chances are, foreign relationship scammers are. Relationship scammers very busy infitlrating social media. I have already been contacted by two, and now I am skeptical of every white, middle-aged, attractive, successful man whose profile I see. But these contacts have inspired me to write this as a warning to everyone!! These scammers are EVERYWHERE!!! I previously experienced them on Facebook and Instagram. They are very easy to spot, yet women and men are constantly falling for their scams. I know several people personally who have given thousands of dollars to these criminals. They prey on anyone that they can get to talk to them. But with a little knowledge and some common sense, it is easy to pick these people out. From the research I have done, it seems a lot of these scams originate in countries such as Nigeria, but not always. They can be anywhere. They will normally send you an instant message simply saying, “Hello.” If you message them back, they will usually tell you that you are beautiful and they want to be friends with you or get to know you better. You can easily pick these scammers out by noticing that their occupation/education level presented does not match their grammar, spelling, and punctuation usage. For instance, someone with a master’s degree who is a CEO of an oil company will not type like a fifth grader. Unless they are an engineer. (Sorry, I had to make that joke!) They will always tell you that they are either divorced with children or that they are a widow whose wife died in childbirth. I have heard the “beloved wife died in childbirth” story like, 50 times. (I like to mess with these scammers until they either ask me for money or I grow bored with them.) They want you to tell them all about yourself. They will ask where you are from, the names and ages of your kids, pets, etc. Want to know why? Those are things you would use as a password or security question. Chances are, they already know your email and are looking for a password. They will normally say they are from one country but they are stationed in the service or working somewhere away from home. This sets up the scenario for later when they will tell you that they need money to get home or somewhere else. They will always try to get you to move to another chatting app, such as Whats App so they can get you away from the original social media site. This is because those chatting apps are less protected. Often they will ask you for your phone number so you can call or text. Once they get you to trust them, the will begin asking for money to be sent, usually to a paypal account that is nothing like their name. Many will ask for iTunes gift cards at first. Ask yourself, “Why does a rich oil executive need an iTunes gift card?” The answer is, they don’t, but Nigerian scammers do! Another dirty trick I have heard of is blackmail. They will make a fake Facebook account, get you to think you are in a relationship with them, talk you into sending them nudes, and then they friend all YOUR Facebook friends and then tell you if you don’t send them money, they will post your nude photos. I’d like to think no one would fall for this, but sadly I have read about it. With this in mind, people can be much more aware of who they talk to on social media. Listen to your mom!! Don’t talk to strangers!!! And for gosh sakes don’t send them money or iTunes gift cards!! Hopefully social media sites will make it easier to report these accounts in the future, but protect yourself!!! Know the signs that someone isn’t who they say they are and stop sending money to these scammers and hopefully they will realize that people aren’t buying into their game!