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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.

  • We won’t post off-topic comments, repeated identical comments, or comments that include sales pitches or promotions.
  • We won’t post comments that include vulgar messages, personal attacks by name, or offensive terms that target specific people or groups.
  • 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.

July 07, 2020
Has anyone heard of or talked to a man named, Steven Sims?
July 08, 2020
Yes I got a so called girl contact me on instagram and asked me to go on hangouts I knew straight away it was a scam I played a long with it for a week pictures of her came from a foreign dating site and then came could you send me iTunes card of $100 for upgrades for phone hopefully everyone one doesn’t fall for
July 10, 2020
Anyone talking with a civilian marine from Chicago in Iran? Weightlifter and good looking. Goes by Richard Thomas King, Richie, Alex King. Asking for steam or amazon cards. Already in love after 2 days! Constant wanting cards for video games!
July 13, 2020
I have been correspondent for 3 weeks with an American military man in Afghanistan, called clifford thomas, who promises me marriage and that we are going to live together with his daughter. he sends me pictures of him and his daughter, he already called me, I have his daughter's email. two weeks ago he started asking me for a steam card because he had a debt to pay from the net. he insists on that and when i said i wasn't going to buy him he was upset and rude. he hasn't stopped talking to me yet but he is always insisting on the card .. i want to believe him but it is difficult. I already told him to ask his family or friends. I do not know what to do.
November 24, 2020

In reply to by carol

I had a recent experience with a Military Contractor, Allen Corey met on Facebook, he too was professing his love for me and marriage almost within a few weeks, Red Flag. he is very charming. He then informed his money is toed up in an account overseas and he needs help. I was asked to send gift cards, either Itunes, steam cards, or ebay. I sent tow ebay gift cards of $25.00 each, he indicated it was not enough and was expecting $200.00. I was then told his cell phone is damaged and to give him my log in account info to Verizon or At&T so he can buy a cell phone. He also wanted Real Money and when I told him I was unable to do so, he asked if I have a credit card, he said he will pay it down and I could use this info to send the money to the Red Cross lady so he can take care of himself. I fell for him but did not comply, and he became more demanding indicating he is nothing more than a slave in the relationship if i would not give him what he wants. I regret meeting him, and warn against anyone using online dating sites and never send them any money on gift cards, or give out your account info or buy them a cell phone. This man claims to have money too, a Philatropist who is making payments on a new Lexus, but did not put money aside to support himself? He sent me an obscene naked picture on hangouts after about 3 weeks on hangouts, I deleted the picture, there should be a way of retrieving this info on hangouts. His email address is corey alleny@
November 12, 2020

In reply to by carol

The man I am talking to is doing the same thing.....he loves me and wants to spend his life with me (after 2 weeks) but he wants me to send him an ITunes card. When I say I don't feel comfortable doing that he begins to get rude and says that I don't feel for him the way he feels for me. But then he continues to ask me about the card anyway!
July 13, 2020
My scammer used the name Antonio Fernando or Dr. Antonio Fernando. His middle name was Sylvestor. He is posing as a Dr. that is going to open a clinic in Seattle, WA. Has anyone else come across him? I really would like to validate myself, and my suspicions on him.
July 15, 2020
Now Ben Lorenzo with Rhode Investment. Has used many different names and contacted me as Luis Calvino at Cap Vest. Has used SkyView and Commonwealth. Same scam just changes his name, location and Company continually.
JulesDon't use…
July 17, 2020
I’m talking with Michael Carl Backer from Miami Florida can someone help me ? I’m trying to search to see if he a scammer
July 18, 2020
I have been talking to a army guy name Wilson Perez has anyone heard of him ,he wants money for lawyer to change his inheritance for gold over,
October 30, 2020
There is a guys profile on facebook dating jon or john. If you move to hangouts his address is davidsonscott216 . He is scammer beware.
March 22, 2021

In reply to by scammed

I spoke with this one as well and I questioned him on things quickly. I asked why his English sounded foreign and he said he’s from Spain. I asked him to speak Spanish to me lol and he couldn’t. Blocked
July 20, 2020
I have a friend that is getting scammed and she won't listen to me. This person says he is Lawrence Churchill and he is in Syria on a secret mission. He has her send him gift cards and also Steam cards. I don't know what else he has had her send as she would be too embarrassed to tell me. He says he is from England originally. I found this name located on a list of deceased soldiers from long ago.
July 22, 2020
A few months ago i started talking to a woman on messenger and we talked every day and i had often wondered how our conversation started how she got on messenger to talk to me How she found me but she sounded so nice and thoughtful and began to like our talks we were having and soom we was in love with each other Then one day she was down and out cause her phone was gonna get cut off cause she neededs just part of the bill she had the rest and being the man i am and the way i was raised up to help people in need if you can so i did a few times always wanting a ebay or stream wallet gift card and i found it unusual but never question it cause we love each other and it didnt really matter And then one day she gave me a great suprise and we were gonna be rich and her dad had left her millions all she was money to give lawyer to get it released and he needed a lot of person info from me ibwould give it so it went on for a lil while but i never cpuld get the moneybto give lawyer or info so it stopped about that inheritance she hasnt brought it back up we still talked i love you every text and not but two weeks ago she was coming to live me and wanted money for bus ticket not bus ticket but money iand i would not send it to her Do now it come up that she wants to go in bussiness selling at&t phone but i have to have at&t account and she needs username and password for her to use She has told that her woman friend is gonna buy the phones and send them to me to send back out to customers and the money will go to her and her friend and she send me cash for my part of the bussiness they live in another state way away from me and when first sales go throughand her and her friends gets paid she send me some cash and she come to love with me forever i want so badly to believe she not a scammer but my heart tells me she is and i have to stop this mow Anyone have a similar story as mine i would like a teply please it may be her i need to know
July 22, 2020
It is so heartbreaking that these men prey on your emotions. I am a female over 60 years old. I got this guy interested in me from IG finally engaged in conversation. He lives in the states foreigner accent has a son jailed needed money for his bills? $1500 to be exact. He then said his phone wasn't working died several times so I did buy him a new Samsung $630,00. He then wanted an Amazon card for a contract he was bidding on for $100,00 dollars I got that for him as well. Now I am through with giving this dude money. How foolish of me to think he was legit. He said due to the virus he was going to wait to meet me asked me for my home address. It's so disappointing that these men think that we can just pull money out of our pockets and or savings to support their requests. I am sick. He contacts me by cell phone and hangouts.
July 24, 2020
I have been communicating with a guy named Frank Zhang Wang through Instagram and WhatsApp. He told me that he got me a parcel and I have to pay $2000 for receiver charges. He was frustrated and reluctant about me paying for the fee. I think he's a scammer but he denies it.
July 26, 2020
They are scammers IG men twice both Army both suffered deaths in the family wanted gift cards . Showed me their bank accounts couldn’t touch the money both in Egypt sent several pictures in uniform. Start talking on IG move quickly to Hangouts and Whatspp. I deleted both apps. And blocked them it’s sad how can you Love me after 3 days one guy last name Lockett the other Montalvo BEWARE, BEWARE GOOD LOOKING AND PERSISTENT ASKING EVERY DAY FOR MONEY FOR FOOD BUT ACCOUNT HAS 1.9 million BS all day Catfish at its finest.
July 28, 2020
My friend has a high ranking officer stationed in Afghanistan named Calvin. He claims he is 59 but looks a lot younger. He has a man called “The General “ who gets my friend to send money to different accounts, etc, all the usual stuff I read here. It’s like good cop/bad cop. When she encounters problems with sending the money (the last time is was $2K to Turkey) the General got abusive toward her, then Calvin apologizes. Calvin calls her his wife although she has never met him. The photo she showed me of him was a very handsome white man with a handsome young man behind him in the photo. He says this is his “son” who is in boarding school. The young man looks too old to be a high schooler. Naturally the wife died in a car crash. He has anywhere from 2 to 10 million dollars that the army has frozen. She tells me she has given $150k trying to pay into a retirement plan for him, does this sound familiar to anyone? Does this man’s story sound familiar? It’s sad because when her brother tells her she is being scammed she hangs up on her brother. I’ve only known her for a few months and I figure why claim he’s a scammer because she’ll probably stop talking to me too. She’s 67, I hate to see her get scammed but it almost seems like she prefers to live in this dreamland rather than face reality. Anyone else being scammed by a “Calvin”?
Don't use your…
July 30, 2020
Has anyone been scammed where the guy says he is in the military and sends you money at first, quite a good sum. Have been talking to him and he said he wants me to have the money. Been waiting for a long time to meet him but doesn’t seem possible.
July 31, 2020
in advance i would like to apologize for my bad english. I hope you can understand me anyway. I fell for one of these guys I would like to briefly tell you how it came about and why I ended up here. I was contacted by a Robert Johnson on Instagram. An independent engineer who builds chemical laboratories. His supposed address is San Francisco, CA 94124 United States. It came as it had to come, then it became "more". He had to go to an oil rig in Turkey in June. After the project was over, he wanted to visit me. We wanted to meet in Hamburg because his son lives there. But nothing came of it. Arrived on the oil rig, his account was blocked after a failed transfer. He had no money with him and needed 3500 euros for the flight. Of course I transferred the money. Stupid as I was. To a German account, which is probably why I haven't been taken aback. My savings, it was gone! But stupidity must be punished. But that's not all, because his passport had been taken from him and is not being returned. What now? A power of attorney for a lawyer will do that. Costs 0.02% of the existing bank balance. Well, that would be 25,000 euros. I didn't have that much money! I should apply for a loan. Unthinkable for me. I then conveyed it to him and said that I did not have this money. Although I have to mention that I would never have transferred this amount to him, because that's when I started to doubt. So he would be arrested and charged with breaking the contract. I was really bad now! His photos and messages did the rest for me So what to do? I got advice from a lawyer. It cost money, but I didn't want this man to go to jail. The lawyer's answer was sobering. It is most likely a scam, because all the bank details and links I got would be fake profiles After a week of radio silence, I received the message that he was being held on the site of the oil rig and that he did not have to go to prison. Nevertheless, he needs the money to get his account because he has to finish his work there and is not left out beforehand. I informed him that a loan is a lengthy process in my case and he still has to be patient, I wanted to hold him out a bit. To date, I have succeeded. Then my collar burst and I wrote to him that I couldn't trust him. Suddenly his lyrics became clearer and he insulted me. I knocked out everything I could find out about him. Now there is radio silence. Too bad, because the man in the pictures was already hot ..., would like to tell him what his pictures are used for.
July 31, 2020
Anyone had an encounter with a William Olivia Hudson?
August 02, 2020
Hi everybody. I have been chatting, with a guy who claims to be a Navy Doctor from New York his name is Solomon Conner. He says his wife die 4 years ago and he says he is in Kuwait. His birthday was on Junr 27 and he asked for a Steamgift card I bought a $ 50 one the reason he says was because he needs that to video chat and proof to me that he is not a scammer due that I questioned him when he said that he needed it a giftcard . Now he said that he was granted permission for a video chat but he needs a $ 200 Steam card . Now I am really sure that this Solomon Conner is a scammer due to the fact that he just keep asking for Steamcard and Steam card is only use for video games! Please anyone knows or heard about this guy named Solomon Conner? Navy General Surgeon from New York?
Cedric Charles
August 23, 2020

In reply to by Jolene

Be in the lookout for Cedric Charles. He scams Shirley, NY housewives out of their money!!!!!
August 04, 2020
Call to the ladies....can anyone produce a picture. I'm dealing with a widow with a child who says he is a doctor with the united nations and he had a problem getting paid 800k from a job in Afghanistan because of the war. Now they are paying him but in cash and it needs to be sent to someone he can trust..etc. I have a few pics of him on whatsapp and only video chatted with him once, very briefly. He had to go to Yemen shortly after we met and after 3 weeks of regular chatting he finally laid this all on me. A person posing as a soldier also widowed, tried the same thing on me last year and disappeared when I mentioned that there's a scam going around.
Don't use your…
August 04, 2020
On hookup a guy named Donald Bloomfield says he Russian 6yrs divorced texted asking me to purchase him Google card i didnt please be aware
Don't use your…
August 06, 2020
I am going through that now. Met a Army guy through Facebook. He is very understanding, soft spoken and a listener. Now he got deployed overseas to South Africa and now he wants me to buy the newest I Phone for him and send it to a friend that will send it to him. The name he goes by is Jacob Anderson
August 07, 2020
Hi everyone! I'm 45 years old and i'm from Romania, Europe. Sorry for my english but i really need help. In was scamed by a guy who said is from Los Angeles, but now is a surgeon in Syria and works for UN. He said he is a widow( which i am too) and has a son. We start chatting in september last week on WhatsApp and i trust his story. He also said he is a war prisoner there. I sent him 15,000 Euro for his documents so he can come to Romania. He told me that he was in love with me and that he want to marry me. I was such a fool
August 09, 2020
Anyone out there beware of a Mills Brown Dunbar or Mills Dunbar 52 years old. This scammer contacted me on Pinterest. He claims to be from Louisville Kentucky working with TransOcean in Canada as an ER physician. He says he grew up in Germany and moved to the USA when he was 32 years old. Says he is a widower and his wife died of breast cancer. Says he has a 18 year son in the USA and a nanny is taking care of him. This guy promised me the sun and the moon. I gave nothing to him, so I lost nothing but time and energy. He got caught because I used google images and found out he was using a very wealthy orthopedic surgeon pictures. He took the pictures from this doctor's social media posts. This doctor is very good looking so anyone out there be safe and use google images to look up prospect online lovers.
August 10, 2020
I have been chatting with a guy named Michael Mixon. Started on IG than he wanted to switch to hangouts because it took to much data. Says he’s a marine deployed in turkey. Anyone else heard of this guy?
August 12, 2020
Nearly 5 months, I was chatting to marine corps Sgt, 44yr old. It was a rushed romantic kind. He speaks very smoothly. He has a daughter who is in military family home. He only asked for gift cards so he can chat with me. He showed me pictures of his work. I was fascinated by him. It felt real. The sweet chats of promising love, him retiring and coming home to marry me. It felt like we were dating for a year.When he asked for money, I have my doubts. (Someone fr the military said, He's overseas and he has access to his currencies. It can be a fraud.)I continued to chat with him and left him dry at the end. And yes, it was heartbreaking and I have a story to tell to inspire others. Last name Davis.
August 13, 2020
Anyone ever been scammed by Clifford Dallas a surgeon in the Army based in Syria?
August 13, 2020
I think I being scammed anyone know a Steven Anderson from Afghanistan
August 17, 2020
I met a man on Hinge dating app. He wanted to switch the chat to WhatsApp. Then said his wife died two years ago, showed me pics of his two young girls. Videos of him in the marines with uniform on. Asked for my full name and dob, saying he is going to send me something. Then asked for his bday gift which is conveniently this week, for two $100 iTunes cards to scratch the code off and take a pic and send to him. Said this is how we can continue to video chat and text. Is this a scam?
August 18, 2020
I have been messaging with a sgt Chris Naveeda khan stationed in Kabul Afghanistan for some time now , start conversing through fb - then asked to move convo to WhatsApp. Not long after his facebook was de-activated (said his superior deactivated because they are not allowed internet ) Professed his love , start calling me baby and I eventually thought he was real . Asked questions like did you eat and how was your sleep and you are always on my mind etc etc everything a person wants to hear . Oh and “do you live alone “ said he will be coming home to me sooner than “I think “ calling me his wife and so on . Then he start saying he was bothered ? So I asked “why” and he said something about entrenchment of his camp and he was worried about his documents and a sum of cash by the finance something . And “trusted “ me to have the documents delivered for my safe keeping . All I had to do was email “swap courier “ and follow the directions So I emailed the address , was given direction for my mailing info and to follow the email updates . Then I was given a link to track the box . Then I began to think hmmm maybe this guy is real Two days later , I was updated via email that the box was seized and the customs wanted $1750 to release the box By then he was worried about his documents and said for me to figure it out and just respond to email to get info on where to send the money Insisted I don’t have that kind of money , “we’ll go get a loan and you can take money out of the box when it arrives “ Told me how inconsiderate I was , I then proceeded to get Contact info of this swap courier page that was linked via email , the phone number was not a find and the link to Facebook , IG and Twitter was not a find So end of story . Annoyed that I had heart
August 19, 2020
Hello! I met a Marine serving in Afghanistan his name is Raymond Thomas. We met on dating app then he switched to WhatsApp even asking me to delete my profile. Says he has two daughters back home and his wife has passed away. He sends several pics of him in uniform and some with his daughter’s. He says he is in love with me. He has asked for iTunes card so we can talk and Steam cards to trade for local goods there. He is now wanting my personal info like SSN, DOB, address and even bank information. The reason he says is for the form he is filling out for me to next of kin and that we are going to get married. Anyone heard of him? Please help! Thanks !
August 20, 2020
i thought to myself that scammed is over with me,because 8 different person ,before was trying to scammed me,3 pretending to ba a doctor, 1 pretending to ba a general,4 are military men,one is a pilot,they were asking me gift cards,and amazon cards ant asking money to invest,i thought it was over, and i have another freind request he is a doctor, UN deploy them to afghanistan,and of course he is widowed,he had no relatives, and he has a 8 yr old son,whos taking care with a home school, and he wants to be a mother to his son,he wants me for his life,he wants to come over me,hes proposal was to invest a business here in our country,and he wants to send million dollars to start to build a building,to start our problem,always arguing, about i have to send him $800 to pay the transfer charges,almost evertday we had an argument, about this,cause i dont want to send money to him, i told him that i dont want this, stop textng me,i dont block him, because it was my evidence, i know it sounds crazy, but i save it all our conversation,and then until now, he doesnt want to give up me, i dont know him,unitl now he was asking me to be with him,.he wants to prove me that he is not a scammer, i dont want to make video call cause im afraid to see me, but everyday he calls me,
August 23, 2020
I think I am being scammed right now. This guy is a Surgeon from New York working in Afghanistan for the United Nations. His wife died, no parents living, and a 6 yr old son in a boarding school while he's out of the country. He contacted me on IG about 10 days ago. Already saying that he "loves me so much" and wants to marry me. He's 47 yrs old and never asked for my age until I asked him. He doesn't care that I'm 18 yrs older than him. He said age is just a number and its what's in his heart that matters. His IG profile shows about 6 pictures of him in scrubs or a white coat. He's very handsome. I uploaded one of the pictures on Google Image Search and it came up as a doctor in Brazil. I sent him the picture with a different name and asked him who it was? I said it was his picture with a different name but in Brazil not Afganistan. His response was that due to security reasons, they have to create different names for themselves. He goes by Robert. Everything was OK until I got a message from him this morning asking for a $100 gift card because his internet is about to expire. He had told me he plans on retiring when he gets back to the US in 3 months. I asked him what he planned on doing for income and he said, "Oh, don't worry about that baby. I have plenty of money for us for the next 5 generations ". I read that and just laughed to myself. I don't believe any Surgeon would give up their career at such a young age. So...when he asked for the gift card, I asked him what happened with his money since he had so much. His response is that he doesn't have access to it while overseas. Does any of this sound familiar to any of you???
It's bad
August 31, 2020
I don't know if people still post on here or not. I have been sending money to a soldier in "Afghanistan" who says he lost his weapon and he will be jailed or killed if I don't send money. His "commander" has threatened me, too. I've been told this man has taken women out of the US and turned them over to the Afghanees. I'm getting out but I am scared.
August 31, 2020
I have been dealing with someone and he did face time me but I could not hear our conversation before he claimed he was on assignment in Syria. In the beginning he asked me for Steam cards and I provided them for him as he needed them to talk on his device. I really got suckered into this online scam as he claim that he was on an undisclosed mission and during the mission, they found $28.6 million dollars and he deposited in a vault at a company called Zerik Securities. He said he had to get the box out of the country and deposited as a military box with undisclosed contents and he wanted to send the box to me. So I contacted the company and they advised me that I needed a change of ownership at a cost of $17,978 which I found a way to send to the supposed attorney that they recommended. I am ashamed to say I can't believe that I did it. Then after the certificate of ownership was changed, they company told me that they needed an additional $36,250 that needed to be paid to the Dept. of the interior for the release of the box. My eyes opened and when he tried to get me to send the money, I told him I did not have this type of money and he become nasty as some point. Is there anyway for me to find out if this was an actual transaction or was I really blind and thought I had fallen in love.
August 31, 2020
Anybody been scammed by a Jason Orlando Clark?
December 08, 2020

In reply to by Fooled

My sister say she met a guy online by the name of Jason Orlando Clark but he never asked her for any money. He say he is in the army a sergeant and will be deployed to Syria. I told her to be careful but she say he never ask her for any money.
March 06, 2021

In reply to by Malibu_1933

I have been in contact with a Jason Orlando Clark for some time now, we only talk through messaging. He claims to also be deployed. This dude asked for money and other things, that was not cool. My ordeal with this is how many other females are you taking advantage of on these dating sites. I am extremely salty about the fact of telling lies and perpetuating our servicemembers. I always say what sounds good its always a catch. Now this is proof fo sure..
March 06, 2021

In reply to by Malibu_1933

He is a scammer jason Orlando clark. Beware ladies will profess his love and claim to be with only you. Guy wanted my best friend to do things that were awkward. They chat on hangouts with no calls that to me is not love. I just hope my friend comes to her senses and accept the fact it is not true. I don't want her to get hurt as I love her so much.
April 01, 2021

In reply to by Fooled

I think my friend is being scammed by a Sgt. Jason Orlando Clark out of Ft. Benning, GA. Met online and deployed briefly after and the military keeps extending his deployment/contact. It's been over a year now. Can you share more about your experience?
April 02, 2021

In reply to by ugh_19838

I met the Jason Orlando Clark. Really attractive says he is 46 but look younger. Out in ft benning says he will be deployed in April to Syria on a secret mission and no contact will be made or cant have communication over there. He says all the right things and make big plans
June 04, 2021

In reply to by Lovely_Cindy

I have no apart of being with him it’s a shame that man are disrespectful to get what they want
Ashley 23 wood
July 29, 2021

In reply to by Lovely_Cindy

Yes IV been talking to jason for about 4 years... Never once did I send anything when asked to... He say he will be home in September... I cant believe how far this person has gone ...