A man calling himself "John" messaged her and through daily phone calls and messages on Facebook, he gained her trust.He spoke with what she thought was a British accent and his picture on Facebook portrayed a nice-looking man with graying hair and a beard.But as he continued to push for money, Best realized something was off. but who says they're stuck outside of the country and in need of money is a popular ploy among scammers. Some even claim they need money for medical expenses from combat injuries. "We cannot stress enough that people need to stop sending money to persons they meet on the Internet and claim to be in the U. military," Chris Grey, the Army CID's spokesman said in a statement.
"In the process of going back and forth, a scammer is going to try to figure out what makes a person tick, what their vulnerable spots are," said Jenny Shearer, an FBI spokeswoman."Because a victim has legitimate feelings, they might be inclined to offer financial support for this person." For Best, it all started when she signed up for a free online dating site called mingle2.The victims reported collective losses of .4 million, which is likely only a fraction of the actual losses since many victims are too embarrassed to file a report, the FBI said.About 70% of the victims were female; more than half were women 40 years or older.
In a typical con, the perpetrator will spend weeks or even months building up a romantic relationship with a victim through e-mails, texts or phone calls, before eventually asking for money.
And many of the scammers aren't even in the United States.