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Romance Scam

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A Typical African Scammer's First Contact

How African Romance Scams Work
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A Typical African Scammer's First Contact

Postby Pinky » Thu Nov 11, 2010 6:56 pm

First thing I did after receiving his email was to check his IP address. I selected and clicked on Show Full Header in my Yahoo mail (it's slightly different for other email services) and copied the entire header to my computer's clip board. Then I went to this site:" onclick=";return false; and pasted the text in the box. Then I clicked Submit and copied the pertinent information to post in the White Males forum.

Originating IP:
Originating ISP: Vodacom (Pty) Ltd.
City: Pretoria
Country of Origin: South Africa

For the new members here, I've done an analysis on one scammer's format. It's very typical of the average love scammer, especially the ones who get money off their victims and repeat offend. I'll put my text in pink. His email to me:
Hello Pinky,

Thank you for writing to me and again thank you so much for your message. I guess it is important that I tell you more about me. I am a single widower(this is to inspire your compassion and give you the impression that he really was a good husband) and have been for 5 years and 8 months since my late wife died of cancer of the lungs. (Here he's smart enough to know that cancer is a bad thing, but not that the American terminology is 'lung cancer' or that it's generally associated with heavy smoking (to die so young of it) and that heavy smokers generally live with other smokers yet he says he's a non smoker. This isn't much, but it's the first chink in credibility. If a real widower were really in that situation, he'd either tell you his wife died of cancer and disclose nothing more in his introduction, or he'd say she died from lung cancer from smoking and he'd quit because of it.) I was born in Spain (He plans on getting you to a phone call stage and this is to cover if you ask him where his accent is from. It's going to be African, but he's going to tell you he's only been in the US for a short time and was raised speaking Spanish. It's a calculated risk he's taking, that you won't start speaking Spanish to him, but he may know a rudimentary bit of that language too.) and live in Florida, United States of America (No true American or even a foreigner living in Florida would have to spell out United States of America. This is how you can tell you're getting a 'format' email from a scammer. This is designed to be universally versatile as he's going to use the same format on Asians, South Americans and Europeans). . My mother is Spanish and my Father an American(Again a cover for the accent, but he's also probably going to have co-workers who'll inevitably go a round or two of chat with you. This will cover a multitude of mistakes regarding culture and language). I have a daughter (they always like to have a child or two. The child(ren) will usually be reserved for a crisis and a reason to ask you for money, but if they believe you have strong maternal instincts (which is why they play the child card in the first place) they'll bring out the children as other characters and try to get you involved and enrolled in nurturing and protecting. All this is to further make themselves look heroic and honorable while inspiring your compassion.)(Victoria) 22yrs old (this one is older than usual but I got him off a 'seniors' site and he's pretending to be older. In reality he's probably no more than 23 and has a girlfriend who'll step in and phone chat with you if it ever becomes necessary.) who is majoring in International (of course she'll be in another country, probably in Africa, to cover for her own accent if you ever demand to speak with her.)Law in college. I am a Civil Engineer (LOL, aren't they all? And this is designed to explain the building project he's going to land a contract for, in Africa. This is also familiar to them. Ever since the discovery of oil and westernization, expansion and development came to Africa, there have been ongoing building projects. These boys might have even been put to honest labor had they not chosen a more lazy and lucrative but dishonest career.)and I love what I do because it gives me opportunity to do what I love doing.... I am always very creative in the field. I do not usually go out because am not the outgoing type although I love fun.........but I prefer having the fun at home...I know that’s strange.....Please don’t laugh at me!.... (This last part of his run-on paragraph, I have to deal with in one swoop. It's probably the scammer's own touch he's added to humanize the cold and calculating text previously that he's either lifted from another scammer or his mentor gave it to him, but it could be a composite of real profiles of people who were truly looking for a dating relationship or unwitting helped the scammers put it together. They get their formats from many sources. He doesn't recognize the conundrum of 'I love what I do because I love doing it' as meaningless filler to plump up his format and sound sincere, but that's exactly what he's doing. He's always very creative in the field? He'd quickly change the subject and not answer if you called him on this one. He has no clue what he was trying to say other than to try and make you think he's clever, artistic and talented. And the next like is to make you think he's romantic but you need to be all alone with him. This is actually the beginning of his isolation tactics. He will quickly try to isolate you from the dating site, your friends and even your family . . . anybody who might care about you and alert you to the facts that he's not real or even sincere. Again the 'please don't laugh at me' remark is to humanize himself by appealing to the basic human desire to have compassion but it could also easily translate to, "please ignore my mistakes' or, 'don't see my stupidity.')

Am very down to earth with a good sense of humor. my friends always say am kind and good enough to appreciate my partner....I love expressing myself, I am very emotional, My little puppy's name is Ranger. (More of his own handiwork. The grammatical skills decline as he attempts to portray himself as sensitive, caring and tender; a person who'd never hurt you.)

Because I am spontaneous I sometimes do not think of the consequences of my actions....I am romantic. Maybe a bit too much.... I hate violence; especially towards a weaker person....I respect my fellow beings and their opinions.... I almost always smile (even in the morning). It takes a lot to get me in a bad mood.....- I hate dishonesty...I am considered to be quite funny and entertaining.....Sometimes, I can be shy. These are all I can think of in a short hobbies are swimming, reading and cooking I love bbq and like doing it myself and also am good at it, my favorite sport is Basket Ball and gardening and I watch as many live games as I can....(Again, maybe a different writer here but this entire paragraph has the same purpose and intent as the one before. The only exception to be noted is that scammers ALWAYS portray themselves as impeccably honest and loathing of deceit. It's the ultimate epitome of irony.)

I would love to see the side of the country (guess he doesn't realize Florida is a side :lol: )and learn other cultures, I have the intention to relocate soon but no destination yet. I intend to start a new life with my future partner if I find one. (His plan to assure you that he will come to you.) I would love for us to give each other a chance to be friends and then see how it goes.

I hope that gives a better impression about my person. I have enclosed more pictures for you, pls send me some of your recent pictures , and tell me how long you have been on the dating site, if you have an access to instant messenger you can add me up on '''' ........... (they typically rush you off to online chatting to begin their psychological manipulations.)

I want to know more about you. Do tell me about yourself.....

<--- His email user name is Williams, but somewhere along the line, a unwitting victim must have questioned him about this or informed him of the traditional western usage of given and surnames.





The post of him and his daughter is a well known canyon-tourist-photo-opportunity spot here in Utah where I live, which brings me to one last point I'd like to make. When these guys send you pictures . . . look at them as though they were under a microscope. Read here how to examine EXIF data that many photos come with. Unfortunately the canyon shot there has been stripped of data, however sometimes they say when and where the photos were taken and what camera used, etc.

Look closely at backgrounds of the photos. Once we busted a scammer claiming to be in a hotel in Europe, when the electrical outlets were clearly American ground fault plug receptacles. In the Utah photo above, the scammer claims he's with his 22 year old daughter, when the woman appears to be in her 40's. Sometimes scammers using military photos forget to obscure the name tags on service uniforms and they rarely get rank insignia right, even the branch of service.

It doesn't take long at all before the scammers are easily recognizable. One of the most frustrating things for me here at RS is that I can smell them the minute they send me a message, yet we have to have exacting proof in order to post here. But at least our members know for a fact that no scammer posted here could possibly be innocent. We have an excellent track record!
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A Typical African Scammer's First Contact


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