How many tv shows do you know have a holiday special? We do too. If you are new to the blog this is about a Lonely Hearts Scammer who contacted me randomly. I have been trying to keep the conversation going for as long as I can in order to show you how the scam works. Not just the mechanics of the scam but how they get you to trust them.
I did not plan to post this so soon however because of the holiday content of the blog post I think it was fitting to post it today.
Talk about family
Something that hits us at the core is family. It is important to us all. Whether or not you want to have your own kids or to have a place to go on the holidays. It’s rare for someone to want nothing to do with the family at all.
We also get very protective of our family. The few things that enrage me is when someone tries to harm a member of my family. I have broken bonds and I have used the full power of my voice (I’m surprisingly loud and scary). And like everyone on the planet I’m not above violence to protect them. (but smart enough to avoid it) So when she did this I was concerned.
She brought up “her daughter”.
When I first met my wife she mentioned that she had kids. However, it was almost two weeks of us seeing each other every day before she would trust me enough to even introduce me to them. And she was VERY CLEAR. “IF you break my heart that is ok, But if you break theirs they will never find the body … do you still want to meet them?” As you can imagine I said yes .. and they are my kids now. People often mistake my daughter for being biologically mine.
So when someone shows a picture of their child early in the conversation of a random online “date”. All the alarms in my head go off. At this point, I would be very surprised to find out that all of this is real.
Tugging at the heart strings
The whole point of an image like this is to sell the concept of a family. Like above it is really hard to not want a family of your own. The addition of hinting at a relationship part of our brain makes it so you want to protect this little girl no matter who they are. That hopeful part of your brain starts to think “Family” even at a tiny level. So later when there is some form of ransom, need for medical care or a problem with immigration you would be more likely to dig deep into your pocket.
“This is Betty. Do you like her?”
Let’s break down this phrase.
This is Betty. Giving the “Daughter” a name and a face makes them more human. This is the same reason why news reports post the name of victims in robberies. We feel for them more when there is a name and a face to go with the concept. Now think about how a con artist can weaponise that?
“Do you like her? “While some people would think this is to be fishing for compliments what this is doing is forcing us to ask ourselves “Do I like this person” Now that you are thinking that the part of your hopeful brain who wants the family, wants the woman you have been talking to makes a connection. “Woman” + “Love” + “Daughter” + “Family” = “My family”. Admit it .. when online dating and you encounter someone with a child part of your brain makes that connection even for a second.
Who is this girl and is she in any danger? I don’t know and I doubt she even knows the scammers. Once again I do not even think that the scammer is even in china. This is most likely an image taken from the net.
Taking a risk at letting “her” get away.
Like I mentioned above I’m a family man. So the holidays I needed to stay away from scam hunting, and focus on the family. So I needed a good reason to be away from the phone for a while. Looking at my notes I remembered that I said I had a brother out of town.
It will be interesting to see if they will continue the conversation when I get back. I tried to seed the conversation by asking for more pictures when I get back “Sounding like a lonely guy”
They did send me a “Merry Christmas” message on the day. However, they have not seen any of the replies.
I still have two more posts even if she gets away.
I still have two more posts even if I never talk to “Alice” again. So stay tuned. I also have a Snapchat scammer trying to scam me.