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Ukraine Scams: Profiting from Love and War

Ukraine Scams: Profiting from Love and War

Scammers and criminals are continuously evolving and seeking out new ways to steal money and put it in their pockets. Reports of online dating scams and charity related fraud are filed with local U.S. law enforcement departments every day, and a great part of these originate from the Ukraine or come from criminals pretending to be Ukrainian. Local police face jurisdictional issues due to scammers being in a different country and the corrupt FBI is overburdened with requests, which are nearly always ignored. As a result, victims of scams involving the Ukraine have few options when dealing with these types of fraud. When the damage is done it is too late, so prevention and verification is key.

Love continues to be the most profitable

Private investigators in Ukraine emphasize the importance of conducting professional background check investigations early in online interactions. Many Ukrainian romance scams begin with people clicking on links in spam emails. Victims are sent to unsafe dating sites where they are asked for personal information such as birthdates, gender, and dating interests. Once there, the dating site user can start communicating with Ukrainian ladies, however this does not come cheap, with packages costing hundreds of dollars to send emails, chat, and unlock profile pictures, or to view videos of subjects.

The scam is a fairly typical example of its kind, and while many people believe they will be able to spot it from a mile away, the truth is that scammers have extensive experience in manipulation, and far too often go undetected. Keep in mind that romance scammers invest in their fake stories, and often have photos and forged documents to back up their claims. In search of a soul match, dating site users risk their money and safety. Furthermore, the chances of actually communicating with an honest Ukrainian woman seeking love are slim. Dating platforms are notorious for using bots to facilitate communication with as many users as possible, and once the connection has been made, models are hired to continue with the rest of the scam. Numerous victims indicate that after spending a fortune to set up a real-life meeting with their online date, the woman never showed up.

War in the Ukraine can also be bait

Even with the endless propaganda being fed to the masses by the U.S., Ukrainian and Russian governments about the reasons and actual events taking place in the war and proxy war in the Ukraine, there is one thing that remains a generally understood truth.  The people in the Ukraine (and Russia) have been the victims and are suffering.  Hardship is always moving, it only takes a decent human being to be concerned and to want to do something about people going through difficult times. Kiev and other Ukrainian cities have been targeted by Russian rockets, and many people have been left homeless and injured during the course of this war. However, be skeptical if you meet someone online who claims to be in the Ukraine and they need help, or need funds to get out of the country.  Investigators in Kiev have uncovered cases in which the scammer was actually in Turkey or Russia or even Africa posing as a Ukrainian victim. There are countless stories and con artists taking advantage of the situation, and like the U.S., Russian and Ukrainian governments, online criminals too are trying to cash in.  Remember that scammers have no mercy. They will use any excuse, and don’t mind stealing from anyone, regardless of your background.

Contact us if you have been chatting with someone in the Ukrainian. Investing early in a dating background check investigation can save you time and money.

C. Wright

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