They often communicate with you for weeks and months so you think you are getting to know them better while it is actually all part of their master plan.
The standard scam story then starts to unfold as your online date suddenly has some sort of emergency in Nigeria or Ghana.
There can be several scammers at any one time using the same name and photo to steal from their victims.
A check or money order is only a promise to pay or provide funds.
If you are at an office or shared network, you can ask the network administrator to run a scan across the network looking for misconfigured or infected devices.
Investigators say there could be more victims that have not been identified.
Ensure your safety and peace of mind - read the ANTI-SCAM GUIDE.
These scammers are well aware of this and therefore often pretend to be from the USA/ UK/ Australia/ Canada or some other Western country.
Armed with their fake identity, the scammer proceeds to forge a bond with you.
The fraud utilized the infamous "visa and airfare" scheme: Mc Coy and his wife Anna were posing as Russian women seeking marriage and a non-existing Russian marriage agency that would provide women with visas and tickets.
(Click here for earlier reports on this scam.) Don't move any further until you read The Complete, No-Nonsense ANTI-SCAM GUIDE For Internet Dating.
The scammer weaves a story of a successful business person working over seas, having no family; they present themselves as a thoughtful, caring and loving individual who is looking for their soul mate.