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Romance Scams

How the scam works

Romance Scams, also referred to at Sweetheart Scams, Dating Scams or Love Scams, usually begin on a legitimate dating website or through online classified ads looking to meet people.  In theses scams, the scammer plays on the target's emotions.  They know that they are looking for love or a strong relationship, so they use all of the right words to convince the target that they truly care for them.  Many of the scammers will use pictures found on others profiles or even modeling sites as their profile.  They will also use a variety of fake names, and some scammers could be operating several "profiles" and names at once.  This is why the name of the person or what they look like is not a good way to determine if they are a scammer or not.  It is the situation, not the name that matters.

Once they believe that the target is emotionally connected to them, they will tell them that they need money for some reason . . . they were in an accident and have medical and legal fees to pay or simply to pay for a plane ticket so that they finally meet in person.  The scammer will ask the target to wire them money, and sometimes will even promise to pay it back as soon as possible.  Since the target is emotionally invested in this relationship they want to do whatever they can to help out this person that they love.

The websites Cyber Love Illusions and CyberPaths tell the stories of these scams.

Resources for Victims

Report these scams to:


Books on Romance Scams

Cyber Love Illustions

Other books about Romance Scams can be found here.


Visit Scam Victims United's YouTube Page, which includes videos about Romance Scams and their victims.


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