In this post-
9/11 Manti Te'o world, the last thing the U.S. Government wants to see is any American citizen become a victim of terrorism or an internet dating scam. So the State Department has taken some time out of its leisurely schedule to compile some tips on how to avoid getting your heart broken by a fake boyfriend or girlfriend. Let's take a look.
- The scammer and the victim meet online – often through Internet dating or employment sites.
- The scammer asks for money to get out of a bad situation or to provide a service.
- Photographs that the scammer sends of "him/herself" show a very attractive person. The photo appears to have been taken at a professional modeling agency or photographic studio.
- The scammer has incredibly bad luck- often getting into car crashes, arrested, mugged, beaten, or hospitalized - usually all within the course of a couple of months. They often claim that their key family members (parents and siblings) are dead. Sometimes, the scammer claims to have an accompanying child overseas who is very sick or has been in an accident.
- The scammer claims to be a native-born American citizen, but uses poor grammar indicative of a non-native English speaker. Sometimes the scammer will use eloquent romantic language that is plagiarized from the Internet. (This tip won't protect you if your internet romance scammer happens to be from Amsterdam. Their English is im-fucking-peccable!)
This is a little ridiculous, isn't it? I mean, this is the State Department we're talking about here. Don't they have more important things to do with their time? Don't they have more urgent threats to help us deal with? Like how to avoid falling for real life douchebags? That's something I want my government to protect me from. That would make me truly proud to be an American.
State Department Offers Helpful Guidelines On How Not to Get Catfished [BetaBeat]
Don't Be a Victim of Internet Dating Scams [USA.gov]
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