Information on romance scams and scammers.
#47034 by mwbemtff Sun Feb 20, 2011 8:33 pm
I would like to find out if this woman that says her name is Patricia Rivera is a fake or real. The photos provided which has here uniform match the name. She says she is in Iraq at Camp Victory. Says she is with the 546th Maintenance Company. I have military experience and she wanted me to request a leave request and I know how leave is done in the military and my dad was over there in Desert Storm. She gave me a address of a general which she told me that was his address and I told her that he isnt over there and he was the JCOM Commander here in VA. Also the army doesn't use an address like She said that was the info that was given to her and I told her to check into it. She came back and said I was right and that for her to come to the states on leave that we have to place money on a transit to guarnatee no top off the flight. It has to be sent to western union. That has brought red flags and I told her as such and I wasn't going to send any money there to a name without company, dept and etc. She said that was all she had. Now alot the photos seem to match to what she does and such. Now I try tracing the email address to get an IP and it shows the same as mine all from sunneyvale, ca. I guess yahoo email addresses all basically show from that location. I also did a friends and came up with the same ip addresses. I would like some help here. She has told me not worry about sending money because she said she find a way to get to me. I have asked for her address there a couple of times to send her a care package like I have before for friends over there. I wish there was a way to find out if she is really with this unit over there, etc. I was scammed a long time ago and my guard is up, to many people today are real slick and sharp. So if you people can help let me know. If there is anything you need from me let me know. Her email address is [email protected]

#47039 by Dotti Sun Feb 20, 2011 11:12 pm
Total scam, I'm afraid. There is absolutely no doubt about that. This is a textbook example of an African scammer posing as an American solder. While we see this more often with scammers playing males, we do see it with female characters too.

If you know how leave is managed in the military, you already know that you can't request leave for a soldier. You probably also know that the US military does not use Western Union.

As to the pictures matching, the scammer has probably stolen them from a real soldier's facebook or myspace page--the photos match "her" story because the scammer has probably pulled some of the person's real info into the story. I say "he" because the person behind the scam is more likely a male.

The best thing you can do is drop this scammer immediately. Cut off all contact now, and don't respond if the scammer attempts to contact you again.

Not all yahoo emails will trace to sunnyvale--you may not have the right IP (there are multiple IP's in a normal header--for a yahoo email, one of those will lead to sunnyvale, but there is often one after that, which is the true originating IP (or IP of the proxy if one was used) However, if you see "NNFMP" anywhere in the headers, you won't be able to get a location.

"She" is telling you not to send money now because you are suspicious. As soon as the scammer thinks you are hooked again (which could be days, weeks, or even months), the money requests will begin again.

Need to post photos?
Are you a victim of a romance scam? Read here for advice and FAQ's.
#47065 by mwbemtff Mon Feb 21, 2011 10:29 am
so how do I go about tracing this yahoo address, I want to see where it is coming from. I also would like to get the army involve and maybe the police to try and catch these people. I know there is posting on this site about a facebook group to stop people getting involve in these scams and get more info to help people. I use facebook and would like to join this group. Do you have the group name.
#47078 by nannygirl11 Mon Feb 21, 2011 2:01 pm
I tried doing the same as far as trying to trace the address and it came back as mine....I would love to know how to I do this correctly for future use. Also, when I tracked the pictures I was given, I learned just how many sites this military person was posted on and found that the pictures have been used for over three years!!! I was surprised for sure... I really hope the real person knows that he is being used as a scam artist. I wish I could tell them somehow but it's not as easy I guess. I just can not imagine how upset these people must be. I feel so bad for them. Thanks for any suggestions for the help in advance...all this is definitely an eye opener and a learning experience for sure!!
#47167 by dragonfly1970 Wed Feb 23, 2011 12:36 am
Hi there!

The Facebook page you are looking for is US Soldier Dating Scam. I, too, was the victim of two (I believe connected) scams - one posing as a US Soldier overseas. My whole story is on this website - scamwarners has been an absolute Godsend! Under romance scams, it is the one entitled "Watch out for Team Scammers." I was given tons of good information from the moderators here. There are also some photos of my scammers posted there.

One thing above all else that I have learned here is to be vigilant. One way to fight back is to post as much info as you can about your scammer - this not only helps you to heal from what this criminal has put your through, but it also helps make others aware of your particular scammer. I was able to help two others avoid being scammed further just by posting the email addresses and sites where they found me. It truly is empowering. Until your scammer's identity (or at least one of their identities) is posted on the web, it is difficult to gain info on them. Now, since my scammers are "out there," all anyone has to do is Google the address and they can link to this site.

Good luck to you and stay strong...remember, if you do nothing, the scammer wins. That is what helped me keep moving forward.

Best to you,

dragonfly1970 :beer:
#47180 by Chris Fuller Wed Feb 23, 2011 3:32 am
Hello mwbemtff and nannygirl11,

Sometimes finding the correct IP address for the sender's location is not totally straightforward. It is probably easiest if you post the headers from a scam mail here, and then somebody can tell you if it contains a sender's location IP address, which one it is, and which country the mail was sent from.

When you post headers though, please go through them carefully first, and remove all occurences of your own name and email address - they may appear in several places.

@dragonfly1970: you are absolutely correct. Posting email addresses and a scammer's first emails, the photographs he uses, etc is so helpful to other people targeted by the same scammer, and can help to save them from having their money stolen, and from heartbreak too. And, as a side-effect, yes, it can aid recovery from what has happened also.

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