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While plenty of successful relationships begin online, scammers also use online dating sites, apps, and chat rooms to trick you into sending them money. These imposters create fake profiles to build online relationships, and eventually convince people to send money in the name of love. Some even make wedding plans before disappearing with the money. It’s a big problem: reports to the FBI about online romance scams tripled between 2012 and 2016, and imposter scams were among the top reports to the Federal Trade Commission for both the general population and the military community.

These scams can take a military angle with imposters stealing servicemembers’ photos to create phony profiles. They might claim to be servicemembers who can’t get into their accounts overseas or who need money fast. The first sign of a scam is an online love interest who asks for money. But the Army’s Criminal Investigative Service (CIS) says that the military doesn’t charge servicemembers to go on leave, get married, communicate with their family, go online, or feed and house themselves on deployment. We have also heard of scammers re-using servicemembers’ photos again and again, so it can be helpful to do some online research on the love interest’s name, photos, and details to check the story out.

If an online love interest asks you for money:

  • Slow down and talk to someone you trust. These scammers want to rush you, often professing love right away; or pressuring you to move your conversation off the dating site.
  • Never wire money, put money on a gift card or cash reload card, or send cash to an online love interest. You won’t get it back.
  • If you sent money to a scammer, contact the company you used to send the money (wire transfer service, gift card company, or cash reload card company) and tell them it was a fraudulent transaction. Ask to have the transaction reversed if possible.
  • Report your experience to the dating site and to the FTC.

For Military Consumer Month, share this video to help military consumers steer clear of online romance scams.



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The purpose of this blog and its comments section is to inform readers about Federal Trade Commission activity, and share information to help them avoid, report, and recover from fraud, scams, and bad business practices. Your thoughts, ideas, and concerns are welcome, and we encourage comments. But keep in mind, this is a moderated blog. We review all comments before they are posted, and we won’t post comments that don’t comply with our commenting policy. We expect commenters to treat each other and the blog writers with respect.

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  • We won’t post threats, defamatory statements, or suggestions or encouragement of illegal activity.
  • We won’t post comments that include personal information, like Social Security numbers, account numbers, home addresses, and email addresses. To file a detailed report about a scam, go to

We don't edit comments to remove objectionable content, so please ensure that your comment contains none of the above. The comments posted on this blog become part of the public domain. To protect your privacy and the privacy of other people, please do not include personal information. Opinions in comments that appear in this blog belong to the individuals who expressed them. They do not belong to or represent views of the Federal Trade Commission.

March 06, 2019
My mom is being scammed. Has anyone heard of the name Ray Kosgas. He says he is over in cape town South Africa using the email greeceray @gmail. com she has sent him 23,000 and still doesn’t believe he is a scam. He says he lives in GA but stuck over there because of work and can’t get back. Please help if you have talk to this man
I think I’m be…
December 30, 2018
Has anyone been in contact with a person named Claud May? He claims he is in the marines. His IG name is Cruzz_188. He says they are in Africa on a mission. He is always requesting steam wallet gift cards to give to his colleague for using his internet while there.
April 18, 2019

In reply to by I think I’m be…

This guy supposedly named Richard Medina or Richard Josiah Medina says he’s in the army and needs a steam gift card for his sons birthday. He’s way sexy boy I’ve caught him in multiple lies and his accent is not American by far. Anyone know anything please help because I am falling for him :-(
Not that stupid
April 27, 2019

In reply to by JaniaB

I think I know you’re talking about even send me a picture of the young child if you want to contact me we can swap pictures and see if we have the same guy.
October 01, 2019

In reply to by Not that stupid

Hello... Yes please let me know how i cam contact you He has just started to tall to me. N showed me pics of his son. Very handsome.. looks like the rook has tattoos n said he needed a Google play card. JOSIAH MEDINA. CORAL SPRINGS
November 01, 2019

In reply to by Jbenavi

Yes, he's a scammer. He is talking to me. Asked for 100 because he's in Germany and his bank card is locked. Said he'd send me money back on Monday. Gets upset when you tell him no.
November 21, 2019

In reply to by Tt

My friend is talking to a guy named medina who is in the army, has a son, w a florida number... can anyone send me a pic of the guy u r talking about?
March 30, 2020

In reply to by Meganr

Is this him? Shot won’t let me send a pic. Pretty sure it is the same guy who was scamming me at the same time. Jordan Medina. Son Josiah. Tattoos. Medina on his forearm?
June 21, 2020

In reply to by Tt

Dang i was just talking to a Jordan Medina. He got me feeding into his lies telling me about his 9yr old son. Saying his son name is Jerry. Says the mom cheated on him with his best friend. English wasn't of course on point. He misspelled words and wasn't in complete sentences. He kept begging for me to download Whatsapp, he got on cam for a quick second to prove he was real, however things still felt weird. So i searched his name then BOOM i found this site. Good thing i didnt fall into his trap.
July 16, 2020

In reply to by Keekee

I was about fooled by the same guy. I questioned him about many things. But he would offensive with me. I didn't fall for it. I ended things before I ever sent any money to him
July 22, 2020

In reply to by cheerleaderdawg

I think I'm talking to the same guy right now, but he has even shown me a picture of his passport, so I'm very confused. Can anyone send me a picture of the guy they are talking about? I can understand if his English isn't great, but how do you know if it's someone else? I've looked him up on facebook and questioned him about pictures of him with a supposed ex girlfriend and the pics do look old and he said she's crazy and he doesn't even get on there anymore..I'm truly confused
July 25, 2020

In reply to by Keekee

Hello... I just connected with "Jordan Medina" same story with the son Jerry and cheating wife... I had a gut feeling the second message.. he asked for my # and I told him we can chat on the site for now.... followed my gut and found all these comments about him... you think he would be smart enough to change his name and story. LOL jerk
Same situation
December 09, 2020

In reply to by Gutfeeling

Did this Medina guy try to video call you?
December 09, 2020

In reply to by Gutfeeling

Did he send a pic cause I think it the same person who is trying to talk to me
October 23, 2020

In reply to by Keekee

Same MO except he said son name was David and he is in OK with his mom bc his wife died in car crash 2 years ago..stated he is stationed in Starke in Florida. Tried video chat but went out after 2 seconds..he had an accent maybe German not there a way to warn the real JM someone got his likeness and name dragged through scamming women..creating fake Tinder accounts
don't play
February 10, 2021

In reply to by Elmo

same exact story hes trying to come to me for Valentines day! trying to get me to send money. Telling me he is so in love with me. I have only been talking to him since 01/31/2021. He doesn't even know me. Has his son David messaging me on hangouts. Probably not his son, he is the one messaging!!!! HE'S CRAZY!!!!!!
July 16, 2021

In reply to by Keekee

I am talking to him now. I found his pictures on fb under 3 different accounts all named Josiah Medina.
November 23, 2019

In reply to by Not that stupid

I think I may have pics of him and his son as well but he's under the name Joseph Medina
May 16, 2019

In reply to by JaniaB

Did you find anything out about this guy? A similar guy is contacting me. He calls himself Jackson Medina and has a son by the name Josiah.
July 22, 2019

In reply to by DeeDee

Josiah logan medina is asking me to get a steam card for his sons birthday. I also have a Joel Stephen asking about marriage.
August 12, 2019

In reply to by tisheena.donnel

Hello, it sounds like the same guy I have come across. I met him on Hinge and he immediately wanted to chat on Whatsapp and deleted his profile. After 5 days of chatting he asked if I could help him out with getting a steam gift card for his son. I told him no and then he tried asking me again and I sent him an image about a scam and he got upset.
September 26, 2019

In reply to by TS

Sounds like this guy i met named Josiah Medina on Hinge. Do you have a pic?
October 13, 2019

In reply to by jhutch1117

Medina Martinssen with a son named Josiah got me for $50 game card
October 14, 2019

In reply to by jhutch1117

Hi, I have a pic of him and his son. I’m thinking it’s the same person can we swap pics
November 06, 2019

In reply to by Eddie

I'm also talking to that guy...profile on tinder... named himself Martin. Son is 8.. tried calling on WhatsApp...didnt work... added me on hangouts: medinajosiah64@ When he started saying he is worried about his son... tried to get him an online game card...he got deducted a few times... I got suspicious about the "deducted " American world not say it like that... the number he gave me: +1(774)4219132... I found the pictures he had on tinder when I googled his sons name... definitely a big SCAM!!
Skeptical Capricorn
May 31, 2019

In reply to by JaniaB

Hey, The name I got was Medina Richard and has a son named Josiah. Can we swap pics to see if it’s the same guy?
June 18, 2019

In reply to by Skeptical Capricorn

Yup! He changed his name to Nelson Medina
July 31, 2019

In reply to by chamoruhit

Same guy tried me on Hinge. Went by Jos (short for Josiah I was told), his pictures showed last name Medina. He gasses you up with an hour of texting, goes cold for a couple of days, then warms you back up and asks for the playstation giftcard.
August 27, 2019

In reply to by 05girl

Can you send me a pic? I just met someone online with the name Josiah Medina on hinge.
September 01, 2019

In reply to by La_la_80

Is he an Army combat medic? Yeah, he’s a scammer. He sweet talks to you and then makes you feel like you’re not trying to help a man in need who is serving his country. He asked me for 100 steam gift card and then said he was going to wire the money and I never got anything. I only told him to send it through Zelle. No bank info was given. But he made excuses so I started digging on the Internet.
September 16, 2019

In reply to by AE13

I too became a of victim of Josiah Medina. We met on Hinge. He went by Jos. I started to talking to him on Kik. He asked for money because he had to submit papers for his travel back. I fell for the bait. He is smooth and persistent. Said he would paypal the money back, no response after that. It makes me sick to my stomach. I am a single mom and I just thought that maybe he was a good person. I googled him after he stopped talking to me after I sent the money. I came across this string of comments. I can't stop beating myself up for being so naive.
caught him out
August 02, 2019

In reply to by chamoruhit

Yes he tried it on me? Wonder if it’s the same guy
Scam Buster
August 25, 2020

In reply to by chamoruhit

He is currently using Nelson Medina with son Josiah in Florida. Josiah is staying with his sister since he is in the US ARMY. Josiah's mom and Nelson's parents all died. Nelson's parents were in jewel industry and murdered. He had his identity stolen by an ex as well as she wiped out his savings. He states he is currently stationed in Clarksville TN and for the small amount of $1500 can pay his way into "entitlement". Insert eye roll. Should be retirement and you can't buy your way out of the military. lol. I've managed to keep his/her scamming butt actively pursuing for at least a week. I am fixing to block him as I would suggest anyone else do. Also was met on Plenty of Fish under username Nelson3450, premium /upgraded user. Don NOT give this scam artist a dime. It's the tall bald and muscular man. Medina tattoo on forearms.
September 23, 2020

In reply to by Scam Buster

gmuiruri109 Is the PayPal “boss” account he wants the $1500 sent to. Pathetic attempt. Stay aware.
July 21, 2019

In reply to by Skeptical Capricorn

This guy is going on online dating websites and trying to hook women straight away...hasn't asked me for money yet but my suspicions made me do intensive search into him and found this website! listen to your intuition ladies.
February 02, 2020

In reply to by Skeptical Capricorn

Josiah Medina contacted me on a dating app and right away I felt something was wrong. None of his stories add up. His English is off. And some of the military information he gives isn’t accurate because I have family in the military. I entertained him all day hoping to keep him from contacting some other unsuspecting person and giving me time to hopefully get help from law enforcement or someone who can stop him. I’ve been screenshooting everything he sends.
July 20, 2020

In reply to by Nick617

This guy is a scam on hinge, going by name Josiah Meds (Medina) pretending to be US military temporary based in London UK. Originally from Texas. Pushes you to speak on what's app very quickly. Luckily I found this site and blocked him and reported him to hinge. If it seems too good to be true ladies it's usually because it is
May 17, 2021

In reply to by Jjeane

Did you meet this guy on Hinge? He has tattoos n bald? Says he has son 10 or 11 years old?
July 22, 2019

In reply to by JaniaB

Omg does he talk to you ladies on hangouts??? Or text you from a Florida number.
July 29, 2019

In reply to by Angie

Look him up on IG under Josiah Medina. He has several accounts. He was on FB under Josiah Medina.
August 06, 2019

In reply to by Dub

I've been talking to him for months finally got fed up with the lies I Called him a scammer and he blocked me
August 06, 2019

In reply to by Dub

Look at the back ground in pics he sends same back ground with black curtain
August 21, 2019

In reply to by Knightrider

Is this Medina person black based on online profile? I was talking to a Collin Medina also known as Richard Medina Collin. I think he is working with a team. They use his pics but different person on the phone and most likely different person texting me.