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Internet Dating Advance Fee Scam

Summary:
Would-be lover supposedly interested in pursuing an intimate relationship with an online contact, eventually asks him or her to help transfer a large sum of money from overseas (Full commentary below).



Status:
False - Advanced fee scam

Example:(Submitted, August 2007)
Hello [Name Removed],

I am glad to hear from you, it is very nice meeting you and trying to share life with you any way, i think we can tell about each other and in life i belive we can meet to part no more and only God knows what tomororw holds and since we know who owns tomorow...that is God then we should have all our ways to him to make it a paved place for us to live,

Now, I'm in need of your help,I have gotten the enuogh money to run myself when I get to Us i want to come over to your end and stay with you for main time, I don't want to live here anymore, you know I'm a foreigner here and it is absolutely danger for me here, so that is why i need your gesture assistance.

How i want you to help me? I have some money, which I've gotten from an over invoiced Contract renumeration executed by my dad with some contractors, so I have taken up the money from the contractors, but I'm hiding up from the girl I stayed with here and my sistem in Abeokuta, Nigeria, because i might got setup if they know i have such huge amount of money ($750,250),so for me to be more safe and secure,I put this money in a box and got it locked up with a security code known to me only,and I deposited the box with some of my travelling luggages with a Security and Insurance Company who render private diplomatic delivery service and i told them that the two boxes are my travelling luggage,which I want to send forth to United kindon , then i paid them up their custody and security fee.

So, I want the box sent to you while i catch up with you as soon as it is been delivered to you while I pay you up your Rent charge and a reasonable amount for compensation,i can make 15% of the money in the box to you. Every arrangement for the delivery is kinda perfect, I have obtained customs papers for private freight and there are seals on the box showing that it is a private delivery and check performed, we can as well be lovers if am what you looking for anyway i dont know yet it is free from customs checks, it will be delivered at your door step by the diplomats of the security company, you do not need to burn out to receive it. And the boxes have security codes lock known to me only,only me can open the boxes, except if I tell anyone the Code, so the Boxes cannot be opened on the Way of delivery to you.

Therefore, I want you to contact me as soon as possible, so that you can make the Clearance from the Security Company as the Recipient of my Boxes.

And once the box gets to you, I will be there with you, then we can open the box together or i will tell you the code to open it, so that you can arrange everything properly before my arrival. Like I said,I will pay for your rent and fulfil my 15% promise of the money to you. I will appreciate your trust towards this and hoping to hear from you and to meet you inperson.I will appreciate your trust and help towards this.The boxes will only take 2-3days to be deliver to you. You can write to the security company and instruct them that you want your fiancee's deposited boxes sent to you.

While contacting the company, please do not let them know that the boxes contain money, just tell them that you want your fiancee's deposited travelling luggages sent to you because I only tell them that the boxes are my travelling luggage, which I am sending to you. Then you ask them how much the clearance and the shipment fee would be and i will also want you to contact them with your name and your address where my boxes will be send to,it is better i send you some details now so they will know you have the right information about it;
Deposit Details

Deposit Number: GSC-POL-0669-PRVT3450

Sort/Clearance Code: GSC/576-45/MP56 33

Deposit Certificate #: GSC 33 94 07

Consignment Description: 2 Travelling Boxes

Depositor: Miss Adams janet casey

Contact of Security Company

Company: NDLOVU SECURITY SERVICE

Contact Person: Mr ADISA IGE (Custodian Manager)

Contact Email: adisa@nycmail.com

As soon as you contact the security company, kindly get in touch with me.

I will as well send an acknowledgment email to the company to attestate to your request to have the boxes shipped to you. You can give them the delivery information while writing to them. Keep in touch.

I love you and have been missing you,

I will be waiting for your mail soon,

Bye, Janet..



Commentary:
Nigerian or 419 scammers use a seemingly endless variety of tactics to further their fraudulent activities. Virtually all of these fraud attempts are simply variations on one generic scam - the ubiquitous advance fee scam. The initial goal of these scammers is to convince potential victims that they can receive a percentage of a very large sum of money simply by helping to transfer or process the funds. Once convinced, the victim will then be fooled into paying upfront fees out of his or her own money so that the "deal" can proceed. Of course, the funds do not exist and the victim will never receive the promised windfall. Instead, the scammers will pocket the advance fees submitted and will probably continue to request more fees until the victim runs out of funds or belatedly realizes what is going on.

This kind of scam has been around for many years and has received a great deal of publicity. In spite of this publicity, many people around the world still fall victim to such scams and hand over millions of dollars to advance fee criminals every year.

In the variant of the scam discussed here, the scammer uses the growing popularity of Internet dating and online relationships as a seemingly legitimate excuse to make contact with a potential victim. The scammer might use an Internet Dating service to initiate contact, use online chat rooms or forums, or even randomly send out emails asking for "pen friends" in the hope that a likely victim will reply. More commonly, the scammer will present as female and target male victims.

Once the scammer has made contact, she can then begin an ongoing dialog with the potential victim. As with other versions of Internet dating fraud, the scammer will attempt to earn the trust and even love of the victim and pretend to be interested in pursuing a long-term romantic relationship. At some point, the scammer will express a desire to come and visit or even live permanently with her victim.

After the scammer has established a degree of trust in this way, she will spring the trap by suddenly telling the victim her big "secret". She has a massive amount of money deposited in a hidden bank account or even stashed somewhere in cash. She will happily share these funds with her new love if only he will overcome some difficulties by helping to transfer the money from a foreign account or taking delivery of it in cash. Of course, our love-struck, and very gullible, Romeo is likely to be over the moon. Not only will he soon get to be with his new love, but he is also about to become very wealthy. Or so he believes. Thus, when seemingly innocent requests for advance fees start rolling in, the victim will happily pay up, content in the knowledge that he will soon be richly remunerated. Alas, the victim will eventually be left out-of pocket and broken-hearted. If he has revealed a lot of personal information to his would-be lover, he might also be in danger of having his identity stolen.

In the example shown above, the scammer claims that the money is to be delivered directly to the victim in locked boxes. The scammer instructs her victim to contact the "Security Company" supposedly responsible for shipping the boxes of cash and provides a contact email address. However, email sent to this address will likely go directly to the scammer who can then play the roles as both lover and security manager and request fees at will. The first request for money in this case would most likely be an entirely imaginary "clearance and shipment fee". Other requests would follow.

If you find yourself in what seems like a deepening relationship with someone you have met online, be very wary if your online friend begins requesting money or asks for your help to process overseas funds. Do not let your feelings towards the person cloud your good judgment.

For more information about advance fee scams and Internet dating fraud, see:
Nigerian Scams - 419 Scam Information
Internet Dating Scams


Last updated: 16th August 2007
First published: 16th August 2007

Write-up by Brett M. Christensen

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