Has someone offered you a huge sum of money or a valuable consignment? It's a 419 or advance fee fraud - find out how they work, and what to do to be safe.
#1100 by Spanky Wed Aug 01, 2007 5:23 pm
Hi to everyone,

first I want to inform you that english isn't my mother tongue, so maybe you will have some difficulty to read this. But i'll do my best.

second, I want to inform that I'm pretty sure the following story is a scam, but what I need is to be sure. Actually, I'm in it. It is not a past story, I received the last email this morning and wrote back this morning too.

Finally, before telling you my story, I just want to say that I was searching for some information to help me know if the story is true or not, then I found about scam (I didn't know there was so much!!) and I browse some site telling story that are like mine (but not excatly) and I find the 419eater web site that link me to this site!

So, this is it:

I received an email from a girl telling me she's bored and would like to chat with someone. I have to answer to another email adress than the one I received. So I did. I received an answer like 2 or 3 days later, with another email telling me to write to a 3rd email adress she just create. We exchange some email and tells me she wants to come work in my place on behalf of an agency who helping young person to work abroad. She always writes from an Internet Cafe and she's in Russia. She said she have no future in Russia and would like to try some other country, but needs someone to receive her there because it's hard to leave alone and starts a new life... She send some pictures that seems really "natural" pictures. I mean, there's a picture you see she take it herself with a cellphone or small numeric kodak...it's not like "model" pictures or thing like that. Anyway, she asked me where I lived, what was the nearest airport from my living place and my phone number. For now, that's it. She do not ask for money (yet, and if she does I won't send any!) She only ask if she could stay at my home when she will arrive. Like I said, I'm still writting to her for now and I suspect this is not real. What do you think about that ??

I must say that when I think of it, it must be scam, but I would like that it is true... anyway... thanks for helping !
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#1101 by ColinWarrins Wed Aug 01, 2007 6:09 pm
Spanky,

Thanks for sharing your story. You'll soon find that your new "friend" will have many expenses that she'll need your assistance with, notably funds to pay for a visa to travel to your country, a plane/train ticket, and perhaps some spending cash to buy some farewell gifts for her family.

While it's always conceivable that someone could fall for you based on an internet relationship, 95% of these interactions prove to be fraudulent. If you feel comfortable, continue your conversation, but be very careful when the conversation turns to money (as it no doubt will). Once it does, you should immediately terminate any future dealings (even if you later get an email from her "brother" telling you that your love was in an automobile accident and needs money to pay the hospital to save her life!).

They only want your money.

#1102 by Pat Hamilton Wed Aug 01, 2007 6:19 pm
Welcome spanky. Where did you 'meet' this girl? A reputable internet dating site or somewhere like myspace? In both instances you are very wise to be cautious, but if she approached you first with this story then it's safe to assume it's a scam. She may not have asked you for any money yet but sooner or later she will. The best thing to do is to cease all contact.

#1103 by SlayerFaith Wed Aug 01, 2007 6:26 pm
Hi Spanky, welcome to Scam Warners.
What you have there definitely sounds like the beginning of a love scam. The fact that she asked you to reply to a different email address indicates that the original email came from a spamming address, and the reply to address is a catcher. Creating yet another email address just for you is also very suspicious, as catcher accounts often get reported and shut down. The email addresses alone are enough for me to say that this is most likely a scam.

Love scams aren't my area of expertise, but I can tell you that some love scammers are very patient and will wait for months before asking for money, and nearly all of them will tell you that they want to come and live with you.

Can I ask if you met through a dating site, or did she say that she had seen your profile somewhere? How long have you been communicating with her? If we can get a bit more information, we will be in a better position to help you.

#1108 by Guest Wed Aug 01, 2007 8:33 pm
Thanks to SlayerFaith, Pat Hamilton and ColinWarrins for your fast answers !

I'll try to answer all of you at one time :

first, like i said in my post, she sent me an email saying she was looking for someone to chat with, but didn't mention where she gets my email. In fact, she writes me to my work email, but i answer with my personal email because i don't want to have trouble at work. So, for sure, she didn't get it on a dating site (anyway i don't have profile on any dating site even with my personal email) neither on a site like myspace or else because my work email i don't give it to nobody except to customers (and of course work collegue). So i really don't know where she gets it. But as i work as computer technician, i know that the most unsecret thing on earth is an email ! So she could get it (or someone else for her) anywhere, like in a forward where my mail was or things like that.

Also, i must say that the two biggest things that give me doubts is :
1- She did not require to know my age neither to see a picture of me before starting to talk about coming at my home.
2- She talk about an agency that would find an hotel the nearest from the workplace she'll have in here, but how could this happen when you don't have a workplace ? Hard to find the nearest hotel, no ? And it's kind of difficult to find a job in a specific little city in Canada from Russia, isn't it ?

And I must say that i'm aware that it really could be a trap to get my money, so be assured i will never give any money, neither important information that could lead to an identity steal. But the thing is it's really fun to chat with her, she's really nice and some kind of pretty too.

Does an email or two from her could help you guys to confirmed me this is scam?

Oh, and for the time i'm communicating with her it's about two weeks maximum!

Thanks again,

Spanky

#1109 by Pat Hamilton Wed Aug 01, 2007 11:09 pm
If you could post one of her emails, including the headers (delete any of your personal info) maybe we can at least find out roughly where she is located.

You are right, she could have obtained your email address from almost anywhere. The pic she sent you may look like an authentic phone photo but if she's a scammer it's not a picture of this girl - in fact 'she' may not even be a girl at all!

The agency she mentions is a clue that she's going to ask you for the agency fees.

These so-called love scammers are VERY clever at making you feel comfortable and relaxed in their company. Do not allow your heart to rule your head! "She" is a scammer and she will break your heart AND steal your money if you give her even half a chance.

If you want to see some more examples of how love scammers operate then may I suggest you visit our sister site www.419Eater.com and check out the Forum there which contains a Love Scam section with some very useful information. You might even find that 'your' scammer has been targetting other people too - in fact, it's quite likely.

#1136 by Jack.Clements Thu Aug 02, 2007 8:16 am
Hi, Spanky! Good for you for figuring out that this is a scam. In addition to the excellent advice already posted here, I wanted to add that this scammer is almost certainly trying to scam other people at the same time she is trying to scam you. So, please do not tell the scammer why you became suspicious - other victims may have noticed the same things you did, and might be asking the same questions of themselves. One of our mantras is "do not educate the scammers" - when you stop communicating with the scammer, just stop without sending the scammer any explanation. She'll pretend to get hurt feelings, she'll try to make you feel bad for not writing back, just ignore her completely.

By the way, it may not really be a "her" - scammers frequently lie about their sex to make a scam more believable to the victim.

#1139 by Spanky Thu Aug 02, 2007 8:38 am
You're probably right Pat, myself i think sometimes maybe it is not a girl, and if it is, it's probably not pictures of herself...

Here's 2 emails i got from her (i post only one header, the 2 seems the same) ...

header:
From Maria Fri Jul 27 23:35:01 2007
Return-Path: <mashulya>
Authentication-Results: mta341.mail.mud.yahoo.com from=freemailserve.biz; domainkeys=neutral (no sig)
Received: from 64.71.167.123 (EHLO payfreemail.info) (64.71.167.123)
by mta341.mail.mud.yahoo.com with SMTP; Sat, 28 Jul 2007 01:43:27 -0700
Received: (qmail 44965 invoked by uid 89); 28 Jul 2007 09:11:56 -0000
Received: from unknown (HELO ASIC) (83.149.87.156)
by mail.freemailworld.com with SMTP; 28 Jul 2007 09:11:56 -0000
Date: Sat, 28 Jul 2007 12:35:01 +0600
From: Maria <mashulya>
To: (my email adress)
Message-ID: <224897211>
In-reply-to: <613030>
References: <613030>
Subject: Fwd:
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: multipart/mixed; boundary="--_-01C7D113-_-1C99DD27-_-B73FCBC6-_-"
Content-Length: 55880

email:
Hello my dear (my name)
I am so glad to see your letter again,I think I am a lucky girl to meet such man and I will do my best to meet you in real life!
you know I can work in any city of your area because it is free choice and agency only helps me to get
only travel documents and ticket, and I do hope that we will like each other and now I have the destination.
The agency will also suggest some places to work in. I do hope I have met my right man!you know I have told you before one
of my friend worked abroad last year and have met right man,now they live there and they are going to
marry. by the way now they are arranging the trip to Russia,(he wants to meet her parents and friends)
I think if I feel that you are my dream and you have the same feelings we could think about our future together.
if not I will just work and return back when the time to travel back. you know I am new here and I am afraid to make any mistake.
I have one great lack,I am very impatient sometimes I can act without thinking.
Sometimes I think that my dream is getting for real and it is so bad to be disappointed later.
I want you to know all small things about me because it shouldn't be any misunderstandings between us.
I want you to know that I am not angel and sometimes I can show my character.And I don't wait that you to be angel too, I just want to meet a kind man .
I am very kind and I can forgive almost all I can't forgive if my man sleep with different woman, I don't know many nessesary words in english.
I hope you can read between lines. A little more about myself!
my favorite activity is fitness. I wanted to be as fitness trainer but
I finished The Irkutsk State Univercity, trainers faculty as fitness
trainer but I don't work on my profession because there are no good fintess clubs in my city,
I used to sit at home and to do all housework,helping my mom. I would like to have good job,
I may work dancing teacher, or trainer of fitness,you know I have a certificate. I worked as a trainer a year ago .
and I would like to do it again .you know how many more younger girls want to get this job too!Alot of competition here. I want to tell you about things I like:
I like to make barbecue and I so much want to have my own home with fireplace.
usually I make very tasty ones and in principle I like to cook and it is not problem for me to cook something tasty and I don't like to visit cafes and restaurants,
at first usually they can't cook weel(maybe only here) and second too high price.
I like warm weather. and my great dream is to live somewhere on tropical island. Also I want to tell you about my dislikes:
I hate our long winters it seems to me they will never end. I hate lies and unfaithfulness.
I hate evil people and politicans I think they like to play wars, I hate any ars.
What I like in a man: faithfulness, honesty. He has to be open- minded and open-hearted, also easy-going. and much more important he is kind,kindness makes our world!
Are you kind and gentle man ?????
I think my man should be kind ,it is great feeling after love,only kind person may be happy, all rude people are unhappy.
or must be. A few questions yet, agency tells that I will have a room in nearest hotel near my future
work but if we like each other may be is it possible to live together?I think we will enjoy life together. do you have your car?animals? I
can't drive and I do hope you give me a few lessons, to be fair I have so many plans .I will find out all travel details
about my flight this week. I will leave my town today in a two hours and i think I will be not able to write to you today or so.
When I am in Moscow I will send you short letter to let you know that I am all right and they tell that it takes about two days to
get all nesseary papers, please confirm your phone number and international airport, I want to be sure I have all your details and
Please don't look at different girls. I am the best(joke). Well, I will close this letter I think I am bore today,and please feel
free to ask. See you soon!I can't believe everything is for real. to be fair I am lost and my head is like any big station with a lot of voice!
KISS and LOVE Maria


other email:

My honey ! it is me,can you believe I am in Moscow. I can't believe ,it was wonderful flight and they gave red vine in plane, wow,I have never tried
such tasty one!!!!!
I went the bus up to the Subway from the airport .In Subway long went, it was so is delightful
I was in travel agency today, but my documents are not ready yet, it will be ready tomorrow.
I will go to travel agency again to get all info about my trip. And of course, when I will get it - I will send it to you!
It is such great city and it takes a few hours to travel from one end to other.
I rented the flat for few days.
People said to me some nice places in Moscow while he was
Such a great city it is. I have no words to explain. you can't imagine how great Moscow is,to be fair I wouldn't like to
live here,a lot of cars,people , voice and pollution.Ugly traffic and people with crazy eyes.
When I get off plane in airport Moscow policeman asked about passport and he looked at me like I am any enemy,
I think all people here are a little crazy at terrorism.Life here in Moscow is expensive. I was going through some shops today
and it is much more expensive than in our town. Food and all the general things. It is the same country but different prices, what a great change.
I think people living in Moscow are very cautious ,I think so. But I think that I have done my choice and to be fair I don't want to
live here,it is not the city of my dreams. you know I am not coward I am not afraid I know it is my chance to meet
kind man .I do hope I am right. and I think you are too kind to make any bad things I feel it.
Well,I will close this letter ,please write as soon as possible!see
you soon! KISS . Great kiss from moscow!!!!!!!!! Maria

this email is the last i got from her for now... (i received it this morning)

so, thanks again to all of you!
Spanky

#1143 by ColinWarrins Thu Aug 02, 2007 9:42 am
Spanky wrote:
My honey ! it is me,can you believe I am in Moscow.

**********

But I think that I have done my choice and to be fair I don't want to
live here,it is not the city of my dreams.


Well, it's a good thing she doesn't want to live there, b/c "she" doesn't! "She's" emailing from the Netherlands. 83.149.87.156 :wink:

#1145 by Spanky Thu Aug 02, 2007 10:37 am
Ok, that's it, now i'm sure of it...

if you type the adress 83.149.87.156 it will redirect you to : http://www.delphifaq.com/faq/russian_ma ... shtml?p=19

and there I saw the EXACT same letter, word for word, but with a different email adresse to reply to and a diffrent name at bottom.

So thanks again to everybody! I will cease all communication shortly.

Spanky

#1199 by Pat Hamilton Thu Aug 02, 2007 5:44 pm
Spanky - As you have discovered, with just a little background checking you can usually spot these scamming liars immediately, and not just those involved in 'love scams'. If you have read around this site you will have seen just how many different scams there are out there and the golden rule is to be very suspicious of any emails from strangers. I am glad and relieved that 'she' didn't lead you on to the point where you lost your money, and maybe your heart too.
Take care.

#1232 by Spanky Fri Aug 03, 2007 9:28 am
She finally ask for money !

here the last email i received from her (and i won't reply to it, that's enough for me)

email :
Hello my dear (my name)!
it is me again and I want you to know that you can't imagine how happy I am.
I have a schedule of my flight.you can't imagine how much crazy Moscow is. It is great fear to live here I think so!Our small town is
more friendly . well,about our business, I tasted my blood,such rule for foreign visitors wanting to visit your
country! Thanks God, I am in good health, all of my tests are all right,I only need some vitamins I think it
is the bad foods and long winters problem.I have to eat much more fruits and vegetables.The doctor said!
well,here is all info ,I do hope we will together in a few days! Info from agency!

INFORMATION MY FLIGHT FOR YOU !

Transaero Airlines
UN 521 Domodedovo (DME), Moscow, Russian Federation 21:50
Trudeau (YUL), Montreal, Quebec, Canada 23:20

Price: USD 1190.00+

Honey, I am so glad to see that I am almost near my goal,and our meeting wait for us.
I think I will call you from airport and I will wait for you there so long as you need,I mean if you need any time to arrive in airport.
it is not problem to wait there because I know that it is the end of my trip and I have time to improve my condition(some parfume)after
long jorney.I want you to see me in good shape! I think everything will be all right.Rather I am sure everything will be all right!.
My Dear, they have told in travel office that I have to show tickets when I will visit embassy after tomorrow before my flight.
People from embassy must be sure that I am not going to stay illegally in your country and I have tickets with returning data.it is
very strong rule. I have some money but my flight from Irkutsk to Moscow costed so much(about 500$)
because so many kilometrs from there to Moscow. I didn't guess that tickets costs so much. and I have to book tickets till in less than 2 days ,
because of my interview. I have not written date of flight because I do not have all money to the ticket.
as soon as I will have all money and I will buy the ticket I shall write to you date of flight.
I will buy the ticket on this flight. May be you could borrow some money?
I am sure I will be able to return it back in a few weeks after my arriving I will earn some money and at
first to return all money to you.
I also have not written this date of the flight because I yet have not bought the ticket,
but if you will borrow to me money I will fly on this flight, in most nearest day,
this flight flies almost each day.
in Agency they have told me that you may send it by Western Union. It is pretty easy to use.
The guy from the agency explained to me how their system works. It is instant worldwide money transfer system.
All you need is my name and my surname to send me the money. Once you do this ,
I'll be able to pickup the money in any local Western Unuion office in Moscow. We need to do it pretty fast, because we have no time till my intervew,
if everything will be all right I will be on this flight!
I have about 500 US dollars yet and I think I need about 700 US dollars from your side with all travel needs and living
here till my flight!If everything will be all right between us I can stay with you longer than three months,maximum I can stay about 6 months for
first time! We should change only the date of my returning flight. Or I can return earlier if something is wrong!
Here is more info about Western Union. You find any local Western Union agent, go there and send money to my name.
Western Union will ask you for my full name and address in Moscow where I am staying at. Once you give them all the info they will initiate the transfer.
In just less than 10 minutes I will be able to pick the money up at any Western Union agent here in moscow.

You will send me transfer info and MTCN( money transfer control number )
I will get cash. So I will need your full name and your address + the control number of the transfer. (MTCN)
Kiss you many times ,I am tired today,you know it is hard enough to be in foreign city. So many different emotions .
Kiss you many times! Maria! see you soon!

Ah, silly me. Nearly forgot to give you my full name info and my address.

My address here (the flat i am renting)
Country : Russia, City : Moscow,
Address : Partizanskia 17-9, zip 121596
Full Name Maria Tchebotkova (right writting in English)

I am sorry to send so dry letter but it seems to me I am like any drunker I have lost my mind and my head works so badly,see you tomorrow. I am
sorry to make so many problems for you I only hope that you will be not disappoined to meet me.

end of email...

and she even attached a scanned picture of her passport...

well this is about it... thanks again to all of you helping me with that case... i must say i find that kind of funny... at first i was like disapointed but now i just laugh at it...

Spanky
#1233 by Ed Williams Fri Aug 03, 2007 9:32 am
Sorry you got taken for a ride by this scammer Spanky, but on the bonus side you now what to look out for. You can be fairly certain that the passport will not be the scammers and as you said yourself, she wants money sending via Western Union, another sure sign of a scam.

#1238 by jameson Fri Aug 03, 2007 11:30 am
I ran into exactly the same script over a year ago (She "reached Moscow" on 8th February 2006.) She was the first Russian love scammer I baited.

Does this photo look familiar? No matter if it doesn't, the scammers share scripts a lot and mix photos around.

Image

(This is the photo I added the flashing eyes to and used as an avatar for a while.)
Edited to add:

Here is the email I received from "her":
Date: Wed, 8 Feb 2006 09:29:02 +0500
From: Elena Karamisheva <[email protected]>
To: John Uno <[email protected]>
Subject: moscow

Honey hello!!!!!!!!!!!!
it is me,can you believe I am in Moscow.I can't believe ,it was
wonderful flight and they gave red vine in plane,wow,I have never tried such tasty one!!!!!I will
visit travel office today and I will get all info about my Trip then.
you can't imagine how great Moscow is,to be fair I wouldn't like to live here,a lot of
cars,people ,voice and pollution.Ugly traffic and people with crazy eyes.
When I get off plane in airport MOscow polismen asked about passport and they looked at me
like I am any enemy.they don't like foreign visitors I mean from small
towns they think that they are so important to live here,I have heard
about it many times and now I can see it.I am not sure how but they
can see that I am not from moscow! I rented a room near undergroud
,the old lady was so kind to give me this room,I think it is her
businees because of so high prices of the hotels rooms.
She tells me that it is great risk
to travel abroad without right knowelege and it is like any adventure.
She tells that I can find good job here in Moscow and
she tells that I am not right to travel to you because everything is not so easy like I think,
they have much more info here about world's life and she tells me ugly stories about young women
who wanted to get new life and now they must work as prostitutes.
I think people living in Moscow are very caution,I think so. and look
at their life I wouldn't like to stay here because it is almost the
same ,only great city,but the same people and the same problems.
and I think that I have done my choice.
you know I am not coward I am not afraid I know it is my chance to change my life .I do hope I am
right.
and I think you are too kind to make any bad things I feel it.I feel all and I am sure that she
is not right.
Well,I will close this letter ,!see you soon . Great kiss from
moscow!!!!!!!!!!Elena!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I am thinking of our meeting only!!!!
I am so excited and I can't think well,my head is full of different thoughts!
P.S.Important thing,please your info
where I can call and ask you because I think if everything will be all
right I will travel to you in a few days!I know the name of airport but please repeat it
because I will book ticket.
Last edited by jameson on Fri Aug 03, 2007 11:51 am, edited 1 time in total.

#1239 by Spanky Fri Aug 03, 2007 11:38 am
No, it's not the same girl... i'd like to post a picture but it seems it has to be hosted somewhere to be able to post it... so...

Spanky

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