Dating Scam Journal
Commentary: Tim Phillips
Dating Scam Journal
Weeding Out The Dating Frauds Online
Is It Possible To Be Safe On a Dating Site?
Learn From Others Mistakes
International Online Dating can be a wonderful and
thrilling experience or it can be a life changing horror
There are many ways to stay safe, but there is
really no totally fool proof way to weed out the
predators, none. Maybe you get lucky and a previous
victim has filed a report, that would be your only chance.
Why you ask? The most dangerous of all Dating
Scammer Frauds are the ones not afraid to prove who
they are. Likely they have already learned from previous victims
that they are unlikely to be prosecuted and have nothing to lose.
There are many ways to check someone out. The true fakes you can eliminate with our online Dating Site Safety Checklist.
But the reality is, there is no possibility to ever know a person's underlying intentions in most cases, until it is too late.
Many organizations promote not using online Dating
Services because as I stated above. It is not possible to
be totally safe and you are putting yourself at risk.
But the reality is that tens of millions are using
Online Dating Services and that is not likely to stop
anytime soon. Rather than preach to people, I believe
it is better to deal with the situation at hand.
So, if you are Dating Online at least do
what you can to learn about the person on the other end
of the conversation. Be aware of what has happened to others.
From personal experience, I speak about this first hand.
When I met my Scammer she was very eager to prove
that she was the girl in the photo. Giving me the link to
her radio station DJ job and live podcast and to listen to
her live on the radio. Taking it one step further she
dedicated music to me live on the air. "This one is for you baby
and only for you".
Who would question someone willing to go that for, right?
As the Dating Site Admin at cupidbay.com I was
removing Scammers on a daily basis. Most are joining
with fake locations or photos that are not their true identity. I
am well known for my crusade fighting fakes and frauds. All the while being scammed by the person closest to me, the one watching me chase Dating Frauds. How Ironic does it get.
A Love Fraud Dating Scammer does not use their real
identity right?? No way a Scammer gives out their
personal information and place of employment, correct??
Evidently, it was quite incorrect.
So I believed her and never thought further about her being a fraud. That was exactly what she was counting on.
Sociopath Scammers are experts at remaking themselves to
fit their victims. The person you met, their character,
what they represent themselves to be is different with
each person they meet. It can turn out to be a shocking life lesson in Lies and Deceit.
Remember, only time will tell if the person you met and
who they represent themselves as, is who they actually
are or if they are decent person.
But if you think about it for a moment, that is the case no matter
if you meet someone having coffee or in a Dating Site. There is always some inherent risk trusting someone with your heart.
Love Frauds are people with no morals or conscience.
They do not care about you or what their actions do to
your life. You are in some fashion filling a need for
them. Be it financial or just need for admiration. When they are finished with you, they throw you away like trash.
So be careful and never believe because someone is
simply willing to go on Webcam or prove their identity
they are safe. But that is still the first step you must take.
Until you run some checks on this person DO NOT give
out any of your personal information. Con Artists find ways to know how and what to speak to you about, reading about you. Even then, do so with caution and maybe create and use 1 email account specifically for communicating with people you meet online.
1- Get their name and location...
(also comments on cell phone and IP Address)
Number 1 and Number 2 below are things you can do
quietly after initially meeting without their knowlege and it requires little from them other than name and location. If they pass the smell test of 1 and 2 then step 3 is next.
First a quick word about Cell Phones and IP addresses.
Cellular Country Code can give you someones location but there are many services online with VOIP (Online Telephone) that spoof their true location showing you the location they receive paying for it. Which is provided by the service their communications are routed through. With many services you can choose from 50 countries. These are inexpensive services and with the proper VPN can be obtained from anywhere. Keep That In Mind. I have one myself.
Using the same things to stay safe.......There are many free VOIP services depending on your country that if you have fast enough internet work just like a cellular connection. Before giving out your personal number maybe try one of these. If it goes bad, you just press a button to get a new number and that is the end of it.
IP Address... Simply chatting with someone through a platform you are not going to receive a persons IP location address unless you are in a forum or somewhere their IP is posted on their profile.
Clearly this is the best way to weed our scammers of all. I have busted thousands with fake locations. But you must be very experienced to know exactly what you are looking for and looking at. What providers are VPN and Spoof IP Sites. Simply running someones IP address and seeing USA or Canada or UK means nothing.
If you have a personal website, you can always add tracking to the site. Give someone your website to look at and go see who went and looked. Some tracking is in real time you can sit and watch as they arrive. With that same tracking you can block them from ever returning, if need be.
How perfect for the thieves joining Dating Sites they can now opt out from their information being saved. You can thank the EU ignorant GDRP for that one. If you live in Europe I would take caution on Dating Sites from the EU, that have enabled the GDRP.
The more difficult Government makes it to track people and their locations in general online, the better it is for the thieves. Odd nobody mentions that part of the story.
If You have obtained someones IP address and you are not sure what it is you are looking at and something is not quite right like provider says "Hide My Ass" or "Leaseweb" or "Digital Ocean" or something similar that does not seem like an INTERNET PROVIDER , drop us a note at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will try to help you sort it out.
Ok Back To Name And Location :)
So you have the Name and Location, lets start.
Search online to see if such a person has an online
presence. Many times Facebook or Instagram accounts
will show up in a Google Search. Click on the images
tab in Google Search and check for matching photos
and to what sites they lead to.
When I checked there was nothing except old baby
photos on an in country baby photo site. Everything
had been previously removed. Any search result links
still in Google Search, had dead ends or removed page
notices. I was told she just did not like Facebook.
A red flag I did not even consider, which cost me.
Something to consider that if such a person has no
online presence but you are meeting them at a Dating
Site, something there may not quite be right.
I was to find out about the previous victims and that I was
not the first person exposing her on FB, by comments from
her home town. Why there was nothing anywhere online to
see. It was removed hiding from a previous victim.
a- Run A Google Search (click the images button on the search)
minimally look at at least 10 search pages, older posts get buried)
b- Run a Google Search adding Scammer to their name, narrows it down greatly if a popular name.
c- Run a Facebook Search If They Have Not Offered The Link
c- Linkedin, If they have a professional Linkedin
Account I think that is a good thing. There may be a work
email there too.
d- Depending on country you can always run a paid
background check. This is unavailable in most countries.
So what did you find ?? Everything seem ok so far?
Onto number 2......
Run their photos through Google Images Photo Search. Most
Love Frauds use the same photos in many different sites.
Many times under different names and countries.
If they are using their photo at many dating sites, a few
will show up. Run all the photos available and see the
If there are any reports on the photos they will show up. If they stole the photos from a famous person that will always show up.
Most Scammer Reporting Sites are indexed with Google. As well odd XXX and other sites pickup lots of scammer reports and provide backlinks to photos. Look through the photo page to the bottom.
Nothing Seems Odd Yet??
Onto Number 3.....
3- Going Live, Is It A Real Person??
This is where most Scammers plan comes to an end. I am
always shocked by reports people were scammed but
never saw the person live, or some other means of positive identification. Only in photos posted on a Dating Site.
Unless you are for whatever reason totally satisfied the
person in the photos you are communicating with is
who they say they are. Which without seeing them, that is hard to do. Live communication is always the best way to
accomplish this step.
Ask them to go live on Skype, etc. Or if they have a problem doing that. Ask them to take a selfie holding up a paper
with your name on it. You can start by doing it yourself and posting it to them.
IF THEY REFUSE... I would consider whether or not
you wish to continue communicating with this person
Nobody who is a real person is going to object to it. I
have heard every excuse in the book Verifying Dating
Site members as to why they are unable to prove who
So they have passed the I am who I say I am test
correct? You feel better now right?
But you are still not safe from a Love Fraud. If you
have met such a person you are likely not their first
victim and they know what to say and how to keep you
2 issues to keep in mind .... If it seems too good to be
true, it likely is. As well if little things seem to not add
up, then bigger things will soon not add up either.
Listen to your intuition. Stay Cautious.
I am not going to give advice on whether or not to
financially help someone you met online. Every
situation is different. Most professional advice tells you
to never send money.
In my situation, I had already known this person for 7
months. She never would speak about money other than
the fact that she did not make a lot and with a child it
was difficult. Nothing hard to believe about that
especially considering where she was from.
The mark of a true con, slowly grooming their victims.
When she stated she was not getting paid at work, had
no breakfast for her son, she was scared. You are left to
make a choice. No possibility you know if she is telling
the truth. To be honest I never questioned it, I just sent
her money. It is painful to hear someone you care about
tell you such a story. I did what I believed was right.
Remember one thing. As a decent human you do the
right thing helping if you are able. The lying and
stealing is on them, not on you.
Never listen to what anyone else thinks, do what you
feel is right.
What if she is telling the truth and you don't help. I
believe that is what gets to most people who have been
Love Fraud victims. You are just put in a position
where you really only have 1 option. The Scammer has
you exactly where they want you at that point.
5- Communication Platforms
I am not promoting Facebook but it is likely the best
platform to evaluate someone. If their FB account was
made last week, that is a big red flag. Most people have
a Facebook account especially if they are single and
looking for a partner.
Most online relationships at some point move from the
original meeting platform to a more convenient way of
communicating. Skype, Facebook Messenger, Viber,
Scammers like many of these platforms because at any
moment they can remove the account deleting entire
conversations. Leaving victims with zero evidence.
The information can be recovered but the platforms sell
their services as it cannot be and most folks are not
internet savvy enough to find the extraction programs,
Believing the platforms, the Text cannot be recovered.
What better situation for a Love Fraud Dating Scammer
to be able to just destroy the fraud and disappear into cyber
space. The stories of this result are all over the internet.
6- Final Comments
As stated above and lets face the simple fact Online Dating has some inherent risks that you cannot overcome. In many instances the only true answser is "time will tell".
If you are wealthy enough to use an expensive Executive Introduction Service you may be safe. But most cannot afford such high end services. Free Sites like Plenty Of Fish, are the most dangerous.
I have many friends and folks that were Dating Site Moderators with me that found life partners, have families and are picture perfect stories of meeting online. Sadly for every one of those there are lots of horror stories. Many like myself found out the hard way about how horrible one human being can be and the risks of meeting someone online.
Internet Dating had the possibility of bringing many people together that otherwise would never have met. But like everything else in life there will always be the predators out to take advantage of decent people only seeking some happiness.
What these people take away from you is much more than money. You can always make more money. Trust and ability to try again is not so easy to replace.
The reality is people will continue to use Dating Sites and the Thieves will find more victims. If there is any advice or help you need in determining the situation you are in please feel free to drop the site admin a note. We are here to help.
Dating Site Review Editor