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If you’ve seen the news, ‘romance scammers’ are among the eighty defendants indicted today by the Department of Justice in a scheme that stole millions from Americans.

Check out this video about how to spot and protect yourself from romance scams. Then share it with your friends.

Illustration of a woman using a dating app

People reported losing $143 million in romance schemes last year, more than any other type of fraud reported to the Federal Trade Commission. But there are steps you can take – and then tell someone about. So watch the video, learn more, and pass it on.

530 Comments


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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 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 ReportFraud.ftc.gov.

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.

Phyllis
March 11, 2021

In reply to by Aminor

Mine is William Antonio Linwood. He’s from Cuba but has duel citizenship. On oil rig in Gulf and needs 6500 to fix drill so he can fly here to treat me like a queen and pamper me like a baby. Knows all the romantic phrases. Handsome photos that I now hope are not this guy. Has started calling me
Ms. Sims
September 29, 2021

In reply to by Phyllis

Antonio William from Spain have 2 contracts going so to busy to talk. I have pics to compare
Wisewoman64
February 20, 2021

In reply to by jay

I think I was chatting with the same Eric. Oil rig engineer supposedly working for Diamond Drilling. Ship broke down at an island in Malaysia. Pirates hit ship. Wants to send me his money to hold till he gets back. What a scam.
Sand
March 11, 2021

In reply to by jay

Can you send a pic. I have Eric Grayson who says his daughters are in SF and canada. He is without money in Cyprus. His driver texted to say he collapsed in hospital.
MariaNY78
May 20, 2020

In reply to by Amelie

What’s the deal with this oil rig scammers and why do they always have daughters? Have you seen them through FaceTime? My friend is talking to a guy and they FaceTime and he claims he works on an oil rig. They have been talking for 3 months or more and he hasn’t asked for money but now he’s having money troubles so I feel like it’s about to happen.
Mignion
September 27, 2020

In reply to by MariaNY78

He will asked money, first in small account and then his stories continue with problems never stop, i lost $170,000 with “petroleum contractor “, never believed, one story and never end till you are broke and he will asked you to loan everywhere
Msgoyave
February 12, 2021

In reply to by MariaNY78

Hi my friend is experiencing something very similar, they facetime, he's working on an oil rig in Alaska. She also facetimes his daughter.
Nighthawke
August 27, 2019
How can I report a Romance Scam to the proper authority that can investigate & try ti get my money back?
christinewaterchase
November 12, 2019

In reply to by Nighthawke

good luck! I lost $75,000 to one...Yet authorities won’t bother trying to prosecute because of the whole “relationship“ element
Gizmo
December 08, 2019

In reply to by christinewaterchase

Message to Rosie what is his name, age & possible photo I think I might be chatting with same man
Rosie12
August 31, 2019
I've been writing to a guy for two months. He said he had to go South Africa for five weeks. I have a friend that investigated this guy from his hair to his toes. He was clean totally. He even has a twitter account and his photo is all over it. Every photo he sends is him. He said he lives in Fresno from Long Beach. He's said divorced. He does have a small accent because he's from Italy. But now asked me for some money I'm skeptical but after two months talking on the phone I tend to believe him. any suggestions
Dpuglielli
November 22, 2020

In reply to by AlmostScammed

I am talking with a guy name Benjamin Westfield Same history South Africa to cold asking for money for electrical jackets
interesting comment
November 27, 2019

In reply to by Rosie12

this sounds very similar to the guy i'm talking to. is his name Alexander?
'lobo450
February 11, 2020

In reply to by interesting comment

I am also talking with a man name Alexander , what’s his last name? Do you have any pictures? Thank you
Gizmo
December 07, 2019

In reply to by Rosie12

how long does it take to get a reply? I asked about the man's name ...a possible photo, how old is this man?
joann
December 24, 2019

In reply to by Rosie12

Rosie, do not send money to anyone you do not know in person!! If this guy is legit, he will have plenty of other people who can loan him money, people he knows in person, family. Not you.
QueenJane
August 09, 2020

In reply to by Ms Darcy

Please post pic? I 've been chatting with a similar man, Collins Hughes. He's on a oil rig on North Sea in Denmark. Has a daughter in Germany whos staying with his mother. Hes 51 who suppose to live in Jacksonville FL or Los Angeles.
Please please …
September 02, 2019
Ladies I was just on here 4 hours ago racking my brain. Please don’t be me. Kennedy Stones. Super sweet My Love Queen. Super rich real photos Kennedy too blessed kik. Stuck in Dubai needs 20000. I just talk to him and lost my mind he was definitely a African. Refused to send me anything with my name on it. Please ladies he is FAKE I knew it and I am a single mother who will suffer the consequences please stand up for yourself. That little feeling is right Because even if he is the person he say he is ........a real man would never ask you to compromise yourself. You can’t save your heart ache but you can save your money Don’t do it!!!!!!!!!!!
masdie
November 12, 2019

In reply to by Please please …

I’ve lost close to $10,000 to a man who calls himself Chris Gregor, an only child of Italian parents and whose wife died four years ago. I’ve actually had a brief video call with him and he looked like his pictures. He also told me he loved me, called me his queen, and is supposedly trying to pay me back. I just discovered that the two lovely emails he sent me were copied, one from a romance scam blog. He also wanted to use Hangouts. He is a govt contractor working in Dubai. He’s supposedly finished his job there and is going to leave the company he’s been working for and start his own business.
not a pushover
June 08, 2020

In reply to by masdie

do you have a picture of him? sounds like someone i am chatting with who says he is building a bridge. a widower whose wife passed away 4 years ago and has 2 kids. sends me tons of photos of himself and his family and is super sweet.
the guy buildi…
June 18, 2020

In reply to by not a pushover

EXACTLY what is happening to me!! The guy said he is building a bridge, that he will receive a large amount of money at the end, that it should be in a month. Wife passed 4 yrs ago, he has one daughter, who is living with her godmother. Now, he said his cellphone was damaged. And he needed a new one. And since his daughter is far from him and without a phone, If I could buy them 2 phones. But would be easier if I just transfer the ammount to a guy he knows in the US that could buy the phones and send to him. He says he is italian american, lost his parents when he was 17 yrs old and moved to the US. I said I couldnt send money to anyone. And, if he wants, I could send a spare used phone for him directly, on his name, at the bridge sworking site. He says the type of job he is doing requires a better type of phone, it has to be the new samsung galaxy. I managed to say I would send only the phone if he gives me an specif address to deliver it. He did. In a city 6 hours distant from where he said he is. He says a person he knows through some contact will receive it for him. The person is a nigerian guy whose first name is Ugheighele. So i am just wasting his time as much as I can.
Ms. Sims
September 29, 2021

In reply to by masdie

I have the same story, supposed to see me Saturday. From Spain, have 2 contracts and is an investor. Haven't asked me for money cu I don't have any lol
Curls45
September 03, 2019
Am now in an online romance with a man from Malta, Andy Dean George. He is 50, a very devout Christian, loves football, a building contractor, lives alone, only has a sister with own family, never been married, no kids. He says he is now in Malaysia on a building project commissioned by the Malaysian government but he didnt know there is a bond require. Now needs EUR 18k. Anyone knows anything?
Scammed
September 05, 2019

In reply to by Curls45

All I know is that this very thing happened to me. Please discontinue all correspondence with this man, he is a con man. I'm sure none of the details of his life are true. If you do not have any mutual friends on facebook delete all contact.
John
September 16, 2019

In reply to by Scammed

This happen to me everytime I get a new phone and I don't know why
IamMe
February 09, 2021

In reply to by Mary

i come across this when i search this name. this was posted long ago but i do hope, i could get a look of the photo if this is the same person i have search.
GirlNextDoor
September 07, 2019

In reply to by Curls45

Hi. I stopped talking to that when i saw your post. His Name is Andy Dean George. Everything you’ve had said is the same exact information he told me. But he just told me this coming Monday he will be ack to the embassy to get his traveling documents. So please be very careful. Wr never used video calls yet. So that’s why I’m a bit skeptical about him. Anyway i stoped ralking to that guy. And his last message to me was yesterday. He told me um The one who is acting weird and the one who is fake. I didn’t told him That i read something on the net about him. So please be careful.
Curls45
October 16, 2019

In reply to by GirlNextDoor

Hi. Really want to share photos with you so we can compare and have closure. Still communicating with him. Can you please tell me how we communicate further? Thanks
Beenthere
September 24, 2019

In reply to by Curls45

I have the same thing except he says he’s bill Newman . Said he was unaware that he needed Malta insurance for him and his workers to do this job in Malta. It was going to cost $5000.00. I told him I didn’t have it Then hours later he had some of it and could I just send $1000.00. He would pay me back as soon as he gets here. I said I couldn’t do $1000.00 so he asked for an iTunes card so he could contact his others resources but he still needed me to work on getting at least $1000.00
Ineedmoneyback
October 19, 2019

In reply to by Beenthere

It sounds like the same people I got scammed. You will never get money back. You not texting just one person they take turns texting you I don't know how many of them texted me. some of them are not very good English. I wish we can do something about romance scam fro online dating site or waring all the women in the world about this.
DidiDidit use …
January 07, 2020

In reply to by Beenthere

I’m talking with a guy now with name David Neumann and vest friend is William. Wife and parents died, has a daughter and now in Scotland doing construction contract. “My iPhone is in the blink can u help me?” Says he lives in San Francisco- anything familiar?? Gave me an email and chats w me on Hangout.
Phyllis
March 11, 2021

In reply to by DidiDidit use …

Mine also wants to chat on hangouts. After 4 weeks of romantic chats today he needed 6500 to get oil rig drill repaired so he can fly here to marry me. I met him on words with friends. Where do I report him?
Sinnett
July 07, 2021

In reply to by Phyllis

I met a guy on words with friends. Working on an oil rig in the North Sea. Very sweet sounding. Just hit me up for $82400. Of course I refused. I think he is working with at least one other who does not have his command of English. He is using the name Graham Starr. Where do people report this con?
Clare77
July 21, 2021

In reply to by Phyllis

Iv had exact same.word with friends says he's a general from US army.needed his plane fixed so he can come meet me and get married.says he's out in Syria on a rig.that he desperately needs to be with me can I send £15,000 to fix his plane
Sue
November 02, 2019

In reply to by Curls45

Does he use Thomas Bruno photo ( on twitter) photo. Nobody should ask you for money online .
tina
February 17, 2020

In reply to by Curls45

what picture did he share...sounds like my scam with a malta man
Lillie
August 01, 2021

In reply to by tina

I was speaking with a man from Malta. He used the name as Jack Spencer. Then changed his name to James. He said he lived in Richmond Virginia.
kim
February 18, 2020

In reply to by Curls45

I am speaking with anJeff George 50, contractor, in Italy now on a job, boy 7yrs old. He wants to send me money for safe keeping and jewels.
Ruby
February 09, 2021

In reply to by kim

I am chatting with a Jeff George, says age 53, on oil rig off Canadian shore. Has an 11 yr old daughter, so he put me in touch with on Telegram. I sent $200 in Steam cards to assist with online classes. Smooth, smooth talker. Professed love very early.
Swelly28
July 20, 2021

In reply to by Ruby

My mother has been dealing with something extremely familiar but she just sent 900$ in gift cards and now want me her to connect her bank to his since he’s over seas and can’t access his bank account, claims to be an engineer with BP (British Petroleum)
Mestuart2on't …
June 12, 2021

In reply to by kim

Don't let him ship any thing to you.. That will try any make you pay overweight charge and shipping to the tune of $1200.00. Don't pay it have the package returned to the sender. No guarantee that what is in it is same as the photo he shows you.