Is this Russian girl scamming me? How to recognize scammers
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Are you an American or Western European man exchanging emails with a girl from Russia? I was contacted by a girl who turned out to be a scammer. Reader Derrick put together some great advice how to detect scammers.
I only have one advice (#8) to add: If a Russian girl tells you that she will get a visa to the USA instead of inviting you, that is - under the current immigration law - a SURE sign that SHE LIES.
Here is the process how a Russian woman can come to the USA:
If she is considered a relatively young/ attractive woman (let's say under 40, hope I don't hurt anyone's feelings here), then there is virtually NO CHANCE THAT SHE GETS A TOURIST VISA TO THE USA. First the Russian Federation will not allow her to leave the country. Then, even if she was getting out, the USA will deny her admission. The reasoning is that she is considered a risk. How could she not be a risk? If she had family in Russia (husband, children) or a valuable business or real estate. Most likely the woman who writes you will be considered a risk. The only way for her to get a visa into the USA is this procedure:
the foreign man visits her in her native area in Russia
they get engaged during such a visit - take photos of the 2 of you together
he flies back and applies for a K-1 visa. A K-1 visa is also known as Fiancee visa, used for marriage-based immigration
once the K1 visa is granted, the girl can enter the USA and stay there for 3 months. By the end of these 3 months you HAVE to GET MARRIED or the girl has to go back home.
if you get married, the girl gets a greencard and can work
after 3 years of marriage, the girl can apply for a US citizenship. That's when they interview you to find out if it's a real marriage. She also has to answer some questions about US history, political system, etc etc.
Here are Derrick's tricks (1-7) that he uses immediately from the start:
GOOGLE or websearch the first part of the scammers first emails and/or 'profile'. SEE HOW MANY OTHER SITES their listed on! RECORD THOSE SITES FOR FUTURE REFERENCE. THAT alone can give you a good idea IF your dealing with a scammer OR not.
GOOGLE or websearch the return email address. See how many 'hits' come from that search and also note all the sites. (many times you'll see the email end up on a 'scammers list') IF YOU FIND THE EMAIL ADDRESS LISTED ON A SCAMMER LIST - don't bother further, your only fooling yourself - no matter what excuse they might give you.
FROM THE START - ASK FOR SPECIFIC INFOMATION! A full name, address, phone number - something. OFFER THE SAME in exchange, except make it a P.O. box and a CELL PHONE rental card that will protect your identity. If you see your requests ignored, which you usually will, don't waste your time further.
ALWAYS ASK SPECIFIC QUESTIONS that would REQUIRE A SPECIFIC ANSWER outside the use of FORM LETTERS. IF YOU FIND your questions go unaddress in your reply emails from 'them/her' - YOUR DEALING WITH A SCAMMER. Again, don't bother further.
DON'T WAIT 6 MONTHS to offer to talk with the PROSPECT by phone! WHAT A TOTAL WASTE OF TIME! IF THERE IS CHEMISTRY OR APPEARS 'INTEREST' BETWEEN THE TWO OF YOU - then sieze the opportunity. ARRANGE A PHONE CALL! International rates to Russia and most places are reasonably cheap. IF YOU GET THE REPLY ' I'M SO POOR I DON'T HAVE ACCESS TO A PHONE' - drop the whole thing, your only wasting your time and WILL BE SCAMMED at some point in the future.
PHOTO FLOOD! IF IT/SHE/HIM/THEM - LOOK TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE - THEN IT PROBABLY IS! MOST IF NOT ALL OF THE SCAMMES USE PHOTOS OF MODELS IN THEIR HOME COUNTRIES TO POSE ON THE NET IN THEIR PROFILE(s)! Consider this - IF THEY LOOK like a MODEL then tell you they're so poor they don't have access to a phone - YOUR BEING SCAMMED!
ASK FOR A SPECIAL PHOTO TO BE TAKEN. IF YOU SENT YOURS, HAVE THEM TAKE A PHOTO SHOWING THEM HOLDING UP YOUR PHOTO IN THE PICTURE! That is a good 'scammer filter' - even the most adept with Photoshop will easily be spoted.
BETTER STILL - ASK THEM TO TAKE A PHOTO THAT SHOWS THEM HOLDING A CURRENT NEWPAPER OF YOUR CHOICE OR THEIR COUNTRY, WITH A RESOLUTION THAT YOU CAN READ THE DATE! NOT some low grade - grainy photo! FEW WILL EVER DO THAT.
AT THE LEAST - ASK THEM FOR A PHOTO of them wearing a specific combination of clothes and/or colors - something different then the usual 'model clothing' - most use to send out. OR AN OBJECT - TOASTER, ELECTRIC CLOCK, BY A COUCH, IN A ROCKING CHAIR something that would be very hard to use PHOTOSHOP to just PUT in another FILE PHOTO.
*** IF this person is real or sincere, they won't mind doing this for you! ALSO - offer to do the same for their comfort also - that is only fair.
IF THINGS GET SERIOUS - then ASK THEM TO DELETE ALL THEIR OTHER WEB PROFILE POSTS! CHECK ON THE ONES YOU NOTED EARLIER! Again, IF THEIR SINCERE - they will - happily as your their DREAM and future!
If she talks about getting a visa or that she needs money to get a travel visa to the USA, she lies. See the proper course of action described at the top.
I am realy surprised about long long discussions of does she scammer or not.
I have read some scamers excamples u all got from the girls pretended be a russian girls. I think the sources of those e-mails is closer to your countries than u r thinking )))
Hey guys, it's simple - the Love never asks your money.
That is in my country - Russia.
If the girl asks me money - there are only two answers who she is?
Probably she is my wife ((((
or she is a scammer. )))
If u r realy interested in russian woman and d'like to have a Love with russian girls - the only one way is good way - visit Russia or get a job in Russia,
Yuri...thank you for your comments. I have actually visited your country twice in the last year, I am engaged to a Russian girl, and I teach English to Russian diplomats at the Russian embassy in Stockholm.
There is no question of 'long long discussions of does she scammer or not'. Men find this website via google and ask for information and advice about emails and contacts they have made on the internet. I, and many other men, volunteer information to them about skamerstvo, Russian scammers, and how to differentiate between scammers and real Russian girls. It's really very simple.
Would you prefer that these men send their money to semi-literate khokhol criminals in Mari El and Chuvashia? I think not.
And if you read the information that I post on this site, you will see that I always finish, 'There are actually hundreds of perfectly nice Russian girls in Russia but you have to go and get them. Chercher la femme.' On the other hand, I wouldn't recommend working in Russia.
anonymous from South Africa
Those 'women/girls/models' might not even be Russians, some/most are Nigerian scammers posing on the net as Russian / Eastern European women. This is not to say Russian/Eastern European women aren't scammers. Nigerians have scammed Americans big time because Americans are gullible, they're big fools, and Nigerians know it. Like thousands if not millions of my country men and women, I receive a lot of mail from Nigerian 419 and Ghanaian scammers but have never been scammed because I'm not gullible, I don't even read such mail, I don't even bother to respond. It would be a big mistake to think that Nigerians are alone in these scams, they are not, Bulgarians (men and women) and other nations are also involved. I agree with Brooom from Lithuania on the point on 'lonely hearts on both sides'. Maybe American men should stop looking for vulnerable women in poor countries, women they can take advantage of. Whats wrong with American women, why not go for Scandinavians, British, Canadians, Australians, etc, why does it have to be women from 3rd world countries. Co-operating with scammers makes you a criminal in that you're assisting someone enter your country illegally OR 'transfer' money out of another country illegally. You deserve to be scammed.
Some are talking of travelling to Russia, get engaged (as soon as you land), and bring your 'fiance' back to the States..., what kind of nonsense is that...? Such a person deserve to be scammed. If its not foolishness, what makes you so desperate that you'd get engaged to someone you hardly know.
anonymous from South Africa
I agree with Yury, some/most of the scams are homegrown, they're cooked in the United States. Sooo easy to point fingers. If you're a fool you'll send money to a stranger, scammers are not bothered by all this, they're laughing because no one forces you to send them money. Why is it important to travel to Russia to get Russian women out of Russia to the United States...? Why can't you settle where the 'love of your lousy life' is.? Why not get German women out of Germany, OR you're scared they'll outwit you. American men did the same thing to South American women until South Americans discovered how lousy they are, and now they're turning to Russia and Eastern Europe. Who can blame Bobbitt's wife if exploitation of women from poor countries is what an American 'man' is resolved to do.
IFR from United States
You are probably right. In my case im not on any dating sites. I think the women are using bulk listings they can get for free to entice American guys like me with how bad it is where they live and the guys they date are drunkin bums. We Americans need to have the strength to hit the delete or at least the block button when Emails of this kind show up on Yahoo right out of left field........
OJAS from United States
While researching I saw this link, wanted to post before losing the thread, or my computer crashes, whichever happens earlier.
You seem to have got the wrong end of the stick. Neither Yuri nor I was talking about Nigerian scammers at all (or West African scammers in general), but about Russian dating scammers...mostly based in the scam triangle in and around Yoshkar Ola, Mari El republic. The fact that there is a photo of a West African woman further up the thread is neither here nor there.
Otherwise, both your posts are generally full of crap! You clearly don't know what you're talking about...or you're a scammer yourself who's found his way to this site.
* 'Those 'women/girls/models' might not even be Russians, some/most are Nigerian scammers posing on the net as Russian / Eastern European women'. Bullshit! Russian and West African scammers work in a totally different way and work completely different angles in their scams. Plus I've traced enough IPs in my time to know where their mails coming from. Most of the photos are stolen, bought or exchanged anyway, so they're obviously irrelevant. Don't post if you can't be bothered to do your research properly.
* 'Bulgarians (men and women) and other nations are also involved.' Bullshit! There may be isolated dating scammers in Bulgaria, Georgia, almost anywhere, indeed there was even an isolated scammer in the north of Sweden, but the vast majority of PROFESSIONAL dating scammers in the northern hemisphere work out of Russia, (Mari el + Chuvashia), or Ukraine (mostly translations scams + gold diggers). In two years of baiting scammers, I've only ever come across one dating scammer from Bulgaria.
* 'Some are talking of travelling to Russia, get engaged ...what makes you so desperate that you'd get engaged to someone you hardly know.' Thanks for the insult, shit for brains. What the fuck do you know about my life and my background? What makes you such a judgemental asshole? Have you ever been to Russia? Presumably not, so shut the fuck up. Russia is not a third world country, you twat. You're living in a time warp. And plenty of people start relationships on the internet. In most countries, it's quite an accepted way of meeting a partner with the same goals. Actually, nearly 40% of new relationships in North America are started on the internet. Anyway, what difference does it make what country a prospective partner comes from? It's none of your damn business. The most important thing is that the two partners are wantig the same things. Your implication that I'm dishonourable and somehow exploiting a poor girl from the '3rd world' really pisses me off. I've just spent 45 minutes on the phone to my Russian fiancÃŠe, so i don't think you have the slightest idea about how well you can get to know somebody who lives in a different country. Over a year of phone calls, SMSs and visits!!.
* 'Maybe American men should stop looking for vulnerable women in poor countries, women they can take advantage of.'. I'm not American, but even I find this sentence insulting. Men from every country exploit women from every country including their own. And from what I've heard about South africa, most of the exploitation of South African women is by South African men.
* 'I agree with Yury, some/most of the scams are homegrown, they're cooked in the United States'. You obviously can't understand English very well because that's not what Yuri's saying at all. Stop twisting his words. Plus you seem to have a chip on your shoulder about Americans...you're not yet another anti-American are you? A very small percentage of dating scams originate in the US. On the other hand, Russian dating scammers sometimes use American proxy servers to hide their whereabouts.
To summarize, which I'd better do because your 2 posts have so pissed me off, I could tear the rest of them to pieces:
You are an anti-American bigot, as well as a know-all. Your posts are full of prejudice and generalizations, not only against Americans, but also against Russians and internet dating in general. Plus you obviously don't know much about dating scams, which makes you ignorant as well. Please do your research before you spread your crass bullshit around. Exploitation of any kind is wrong! And a victim is never to blame for a crime. If a woman is raped, is it her fault because her 'skirt was too short and she asked for it'? Of course not. Ergo, if someone steals your money under false pretences, that's a crime, no matter how you look at it.
Oto'idi, a to jebnu, mudozvon!
Eddie from Sweden
IFR from United States
No need to apologize to that asshole, or excuse yourself. His posts are full of crap. Plus he's obviously Anti-american. You have the right to find a partner in any country you damn well please. The only important thing is that you treat her with respect.
BTW, the scammers get your email addresses using an email extractor. They will spam anybody in any country, even the '3rd world'. All they're interested in is making quick cash. This is not a USA thing.
OJAS from United States
While researching I saw some links, wanted to post before losing the thread, or my computer crashes, whichever happens earlier.
First Thanks Eddie, for exposing this phobic / manic / demented individual
IFR, We American only accept objective criticisms when we actually go wrong ... We don't sit with our hand tied when insults are hurled at us for just being Americans!
Zuid Afrika 2007-10-21, 04:49:21
''Whats wrong with American women, why not go for Scandinavians, British, Canadians, Australians''
Are you Vervoerd on Cialis? A disgrace to decent South Africans
''why does it have to be women from 3rd world countries''
First see if this original definition can penetrate your armoured skull
1) 1st world - NATO countries when Warsaw Pact was in effect, Western Europe, Australia, NZ, Japan
2) 2nd world - Former Warsaw Pact countries
3) 3rd world - All other countries including your ZUID AFRIKA
4) 4th world - Original natives (e.g. in the Ameriacas, Australia, Maori, Ainu, Inuit, Lapps, some tribes of Lesotho, Swaziland)
Second when club 69 in Jo'burg wants new teenagers why are they from across the Beit Bridge ... of course from a 3rd world country?
Is there something wrong seeking a better life overseas, or a foreign partner? Ask Kevin Pietersen
One such individual was expelled in Pietermaritzburg for boarding a ''BLANKE'' railway carriage and began a non-violent movement, so today you can abuse your recently found freedom of expression, without fear of being sent to Polsmoor or Robben Island. You sure must be carrying a flame-shooter in your guilded car paid for by blood diamonds. Are you just an Americophobe, or Xenophobe, or even worse? Do you call your broad-minded compatriots as Kafir-bootie, many civil servants as coolie?
Oprah can only open schools in SA ... Alas, she can't teach those who WILL NOT LEARN
On your next visit to Weehah don't bother with your bungy cord
PS Do you think it was Bobbit who fed a worker to his lions in his farm? Was it he who raped a baby girl as a cure for HIV?
1) Scammers can claim to be from any city or country
2) They can use a FORGED IP pointing to any country of their choice
3) They can also be ''dynamic'' traveling between cities / countries depending on the size of their business
4) They can also employ paid accomplices in other countries again depending on their business volume
These in no-way make residents of such cities / countries culpable, as home-growing crime-mongers
What do you call one who does not know that Russia is not in third world?