Scammers also ask victims to send money to help overcome a financial situation they claim to be experiencing.
These are all lies intended to take money from unsuspecting victims.
However, be forewarned: the online contact could be a criminal sitting in a cyber café with a well-rehearsed script that scammers have used repeatedly and successfully.
Scammers search chat rooms, dating sites, and social networking sites looking for victims.
In another scheme, scammers ask victims to receive funds in the form of a cashier's check, money order, or wire transfer, claiming they are out of the country and unable to cash the instruments or receive the funds directly.
The scammers ask victims to redirect the funds to them or to an associate to whom they purportedly owe money.
But even now, 83-year-old Kathy thinks a civil engineer from Washington named Fred, who chatted her up online and promised marriage as long as she wired money to Malaysia, loves her.
“To this day, she does not consider herself to be a victim,” said Kathy’s son Dave Weil.
They then create their own attractive fake profiles to reel in their unsuspecting targets by striking up a conversation, quickly professing their love, and making plans to meet.“That big investment gives victims a false sense that the relationship must be real.” Eventually a pitch for money comes.Often the scammer will say an emergency situation has arisen and money is needed fast to avoid dire consequences.Pretty much Opening yourself up emotionally, especially on a public online profile, takes a lot of courage and trust.But you also need to balance that openness with some wariness and healthy skepticism, or you could be taken advantage of.