Woman loses $300,000 in Christian Mingle online dating scam

woman loses 300000 christian mingle online dating scam internet scams

Detailed by San Francisco ABC news affiliate KGO-TV, a 66-year-old San Jose divorcee was swindled out of $300,000 by a Nigerian man who used an online dating site profile as bait. Claiming to be an Irish citizen named David Holmes that worked on a Scottish oil rig, the man started talking to the divorcee  through dating site ChristianMingle.com, a site that markets itself as “the online community created specifically for Christian singles looking to find friends, romance or marriage.” The relationship initially progressed from communication through the dating site to emails, text messages, flower deliveries and eventually phone calls. 

Further along in the relationship, the conversation turned a need for money to pay off his daughter’s tuition. After those initial payments came through, the Nigerian man requested that the woman help fund his oil rig business. The scammer even went as far as setting up a fake business website to help legitimize the claim. According to authorities, the divorcee got her hands on $300,000 by pulling it out of her retirement account as well as refinancing her home. 

christian-mingle

By the time that someone in her life contacted the authorities, the woman had wired an additional $200,000 as a second loan to help the fake oil rig business. Fortunately, the Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office was able to move quickly and freeze the $200,000 transaction with the help of Turkish banking officials. In addition, Turkish authorities were able to arrest an associate of the Nigerian scammer at the bank in question. The Skype and email accounts used by “David Holmes” were traced back to a location in Nigeria. 

Warning the public about the incident, Deputy District Attorney Cherie Bourlard said “Don’t loan or invest money with anyone you have never met and only know from a dating website. It’s too easy to create a false identity, or steal someone else’s identity, and use it on an online dating service.” Regarding the remaining $300,000, Bourlard said that there’s barely a chance of tracking down the initial large payment and federal authorities won’t get involved for cases less than $1 million.

News

In SEC filing, Facebook admits Libra cryptocurrency may not happen after all

Facebook’s drive to create its own worldwide cryptocurrency might have hit a brick wall. In a new SEC filing, the company said that Libra’s planned 2020 launch might be delayed – or it might not ever happen at all.
News

Sen. Josh Hawley wants to ban infinite scroll and autoplay videos

Sen. Josh Hawley introduced legislation on Tuesday calling for tech giants to curb deceptive techniques that fuel social media addiction.The bill would ban features that he says can be addictive to users like infinite scroll and autoplay.
Wearables

Facebook’s ‘brain-computer interface’ could let you type with your mind

Facebook talked a couple of years ago about creating technology that lets you type with your mind. Aimed primarily at patients with speech loss due to paralysis, the company recently offered an update on its ambitious project.
News

Facebook just deleted fake accounts from the Middle East

Facebook removed fake accounts from UAE, Egypt and Saudi Arabia because of coordinated inauthentic behavior. The social network announced in a blog post the removal of pages, groups, and accounts that originated in these countries.
News

The FTC wants to know exactly why Facebook bought Instagram and WhatsApp

The Federal Trade Commission's antitrust investigation into Facebook will focus in on its acquisition of Instagram and WhatsApp. The FTC wants to know if Facebook tried to acquire its social media rivals before they would become a threat
News

Facebook is going to add its name to Instagram and WhatsApp

Facebook plans to add its name to both Instagram and WhatsApp as politicians call for the social media giant to be broken apart and the FTC investigates Facebook’s acquisition of both companies.
News

WhatsApp has 400 million users in India, but no fix for its fake news problem

WhatsApp is struggling to stem the tide of fake news in India, its biggest market. In the last few years, its platform has been inundated with an around-the-clock avalanche of misinformation -- misleading mobs into lynching innocents and…
Web

Were they really that bad? Here are the 10 most disliked videos on YouTube

Ever wondered which videos are the most disliked videos on YouTube? Well, we have the top ten list you’re looking for. Here are the latest videos with the most dislikes currently on YouTube.
Mobile

Telegram’s new Slow Mode aims to bring order to noisy group chats

Messaging app Telegram has just released some new features that are bound to please. Slow Mode aims to bring some order to group chats, while Silent Messages ensures you won’t wake your buddy if you get in touch late in the day.
Social Media

The EU could hit Facebook with billions in fines over privacy violations

The European Union is reportedly nearing the end of its investigations into some of the cases it has opened against Facebook pertaining to the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation or GDPR. The EU currently has 11 open cases against the…
Social Media

Quit hitting refresh: Twitter is testing a subscribe to tweet replies feature

Soon you might be able to get a push notification when a tweet has been replied to as well. Twitter is currently testing a new feature that will allow users to turn on notifications for a particular thread.
Computing

Make a GIF of your favorite YouTube video with these great tools

Making a GIF from a YouTube video is easier than ever, but choosing the right tool to use isn't always so simple. In this guide, we'll teach you how to make a GIF from a YouTube video with our three favorite tools.
News

Facebook admits it was listening to your private conversations, too

Facebook outsourced contractors to listen in on your audio messenger chats and transcribe them. Contractors were not told why they were listening in or why they were transcribing them. Facebook said it is no longer transcribing audio. 
Social Media

Spice up your Instagram videos by adding your top tunes to the soundtrack

Have you ever taken a beautiful video, only to have it ruined by some jerk in the background yelling curse words? Here's a list of apps you can use to add your own music to Instagram posts as well as your Story.