Let's admit it, dating is hard. This is even more true with today's technology now that you can now text, swipe, video chat, email, message and speed date to your next relationshi… Read More
Or, perhaps you know someone who connected with a date online, only to find out it was an imposter with a fake identity. Maybe you find yourself growing suspicious about someone you met online and are desperate to find conclusive proof one way or the other.
Chloe knew about online scams, but considered herself a wise exception to that rule. Similar to most of the people we hear from at Social Catfish, she had no idea she would be the victim of a deceit so complex it would cost her $700,000 and involve the FBI.
Later, once the truth was out, she would still find herself wondering how she could have been so tricked. Chloe is not alone. It is frequent to see online users grow suspicious about long distance partners, while others wholeheartedly believe in the person they’ve been online dating until they run a search and find out the truth through our specialized search algorithm.
Over time, she grew to trust Henry completely. Not only did they exchange frequent emails but they texted constantly. His face, in the photographs he sent, put her at ease. He was her best friend, confidant, and someone she could see a future with. When people inquired about her dating status, she felt confident enough to say that she was in a two year relationship with a very successful overseas global contractor.
Or, so she thought.
Chloe, like many of the people we hear from, was educated, smart, and even made her living as a savvy tax attorney. Moreover, she knew the in’s and out’s of the financial world- a fact that Henry would use to his advantage, emotionally and financially.
As Chloe and Henry became closer, Henry explained he was having trouble getting a loan due to some back taxes owed to the IRS. Chloe was used to seeing similar credit problems in her clients and knew Henry had promised to pay her back as the project became lucrative. As their relationship became closer, she agreed to fund him a loan for his project overseas, as that’s what you do when you trust and love someone.
As Henry needed the loans mailed to him right away, she began to wrap stacks of money, concealed inside boxes of clothing. Chloe sent box after box, a “care package” she thought, until the FBI finally flagged one box as suspicious and contacted her. It was then she found out something was wrong, Henry was a Catfish in Nigeria. The FBI then had her send her fictional “Henry” an eleventh box, to try to catch him.
The package was received in Nigeria by Chloe’s catfish but unfortunately the Nigerian government wouldn’t do anything to help. One reason Nigerian scammers are so common is because they don’t ever take any heat from the government. Chloe wasn’t able to recover her money but at least she now knew the truth.
Almost more shocking than the amount of money Chloe lost, is what happened after the financial scam resolved itself. When we met Chloe she had come to Social Catfish to find out about the real person in the photographs “Henry” had used. After 2 years of looking at those photos and thinking they were of her boyfriend, she felt a connection to the image of the handsome man in those photographs.
Can being Catfished lead to REAL love?
Chloe became curious about the real man in the photos the scammer had sent. She ran a reverse image search and found some contact information for the man. She reached out to him to let him know what happened so that he was aware people were stealing his photos. The man wanted nothing to do with Chloe at first because he was in a serious relationship. He avoided contact with her after an abrupt “I’m in a relationship” conversation ender. After a few weeks went by, the man’s relationship ended. He reached out to Chloe wanting to learn more about her story. They found out that they lived close by each other and met up for coffee. They started dating and have been together ever since.
Have you or a friend ever been catfished? Are you currently suspicious of a catfish? Run a free search and put your mind at ease. That’s what Chloe did and it worked out for her.