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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, Lawyer
Category: Fraud Examiner
Satisfied Customers: 44932
Experience:  Lawyer with fraud examination experience
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Chatting with person on dating site, moved over to email,

Customer Question

Chatting with person on dating site, moved over to email, then modelling agency starts asking for money to release their model to meet, and more money to go through 'clearance processes', sound dodgey?
The person has supposed images of themselves on popular adult magazine website.
Submitted: 2 months ago.
Category: Fraud Examiner
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 months ago.

Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and I will be assisting you with your question today.

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 months ago.

Please can you provide me with this person's user name, email and details of the agency so that I can look into it for you? Thank you

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 months ago.

The first important thing you should be aware of is that it is never possible to state with certainty whether someone you have met online is genuine or not unless you have actually met them in person. Therefore, there will inevitable be a degree of speculation involved.

With the anonymity of the internet, there has been a very significant increase in romance scams. The main way to identify such scams is not by tracing the person, which as mentioned would often be impossible, but by looking at the overall situation and identifying certain 'red flags'. The most common ones are:

1. You have met this person online, usually through a dating or social networking website, or via instant messaging.

2. They will usually be located in a different country to you.

3. They may use a photo of another person. You can actually try and trace the photo to see if it has been used elsewhere by using Google’s ‘Search by Image’ facility: http://images.google.com/imghp?hl=en

4. They will eventually ask for money. There are various reasons used and a very comprehensive list of commonly used requests can be found here: http://romancescams.org/TypesOfScams.html. However, the golden rule is that you should never send money to a stranger that you have originally met online, no matter what the reasons or who they say they are.

5. Finally, they often request that the payment is made via some dubious money transfer method, with little or no fraud protection, such as Western Union, Moneygram, etc. These are also used because it makes tracing the recipients of the money very difficult, if not impossible.

If the above looks familiar, chances are that the person you are involved with is a fraudster and you need to proceed with extreme caution, if at all. I strongly suggest you cease all contact with the person and certainly not send anything to them.

I hope this has answered your query. I would be grateful if you could please take a second to leave a positive rating (3, 4 or 5 stars) as that is an important part of our process and recognises the time I have spent assisting you. If you need me to clarify anything before you go - please get back to me on here and I will assist further as best as I can. Thank you

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 months ago.

Hello, I see you have read my response to your query. If this has answered your question please take a second to leave a positive rating by selecting 3, 4 or 5 stars from the top of the page. I spend a lot of time and effort answering individual queries and I am not credited for my time until you leave your rating. If you still need further help please get back to me on here and I will assist as best as I can. Many thanks.

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 months ago.

Hello, do you need any further assistance or are you happy with the above response? Look forward to hearing from you.