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One way to steer clear of these criminals altogether is to stick to online dating websites with nationally known reputations.

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After they establish some lovely correspondence with you, fall in love and maybe even send a couple of cheap presents, they will either: a) be almost on their way to meet you, but something will happen to them: they will get robbed, beaten, get into the hospital, or other misfortune will happen and of course you will be their only contact to ask for financial help, or: b) tell you that their employer pays them with Money Orders or checks, and they can't cash them in Nigeria.

They will send you the Money Orders or checks and ask you to deposit them into your bank account and then wire the money to them via Western Union.

Usually they say to keep some money for your trouble.

Needless to say, those Money Orders or checks are no good, and not even worth the paper they're printed on.

We strongly recommend, however, that if you think you’ve been victimized by a dating scam or any other online scam, file a complaint with our Internet Crime Complaint Center (

Before forwarding the complaints to the appropriate agencies, IC3 collates and analyzes the data—looking for common threads that could link complaints together and help identify the culprits. Here are some tips on how to avoid becoming a victim of an online dating scam.Then there is a recovery scam - a scammer recontacting you pretending to be FBI, EFCC or any other authority, telling he can help you recover your money... And finaly there is a "stuck parcel" scam, when they supposedly sent you goods/gifts, but they got stuck somewhere on the way (for example, on the customs) and you have to pay to "customs" or some bogus shipping company to get them.All types of scams are described in details on Romancescam.There is a reason why online merchants usually don't ship there.There are also military scams (for God Sake, there are NO American Generals browsing dating sites and NO military man will EVER ask you for money.For weeks, even months, you may chat back and forth with one another, forming a connection. But ultimately, it’s going to happen—your new-found “friend” is going to ask you for money.

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