If you are in a correspondence with somebody who fits the description above and you suspect they are a scammer, here's what to do.
If you have already sent money to somebody abroad, the chances are you have been scammed.
Unfortunately the chances of your getting the money back are very slim indeed. Some unscrupulous online dating sites don't filter for scammers because they feel that the more messages going through the system, the better, no matter what the quality of the correspondence is.
However, you should go to the Police and let them know. Sites like Midsummer's Eve do filter of course, but we can only filter about 95% of scammers using our automated and manual checking systems. Usually the scammers will conduct their business having lured you away from the site and onto regular email or instant messaging.
This article focuses on the folks who have already fallen prey to a dating scam, and what they can do about it.
The first step is to stop communicating with the person trying to romance scam you.
Learn more about how to protect yourself with About.com's Guide to Identity Theft.
Here are some tell-tale signs that you've been approached by a scammer: Bear in mind that any of these characteristics can apply to genuine online dating site members as well, so just because one or two of these tell-tale signs is present doesn't necessarily mean you're being scammed - but be on your guard.
That means printing out all emails, filing every letter received, keeping any related credit card, wire, money order, and/or bank receipts, printing off phone bills, writing out text messages or getting a list from your cell phone provider, filing any related canceled checks, and documenting chats received via instant message.
Most dating scams are perpetrated through Western Union.
You may also want to contact the local authorities, although they may not be able to help with much other than the documentation needed in the next step of this process.
Alternatively, you can post your dating scam story here.