A man who targeted a woman for online romance fraud has revealed the steps he used to target her.
“I looked up her story, where she lived, her interests and hobbies,” he told Action Fraud, the UK’s national fraud and cyber crime reporting centre. “She said she liked to dive so I looked up diving.
“When I spoke to her for the first time, we immediately hit it off. We had so much to talk about.
“While we were on the line, she told me where she used to live. She said she went to school locally. I went on the internet and ‘drove’ down the road where she said she grew up.
“I said I had been there as a kid with my mum and dad but didn’t remember too much about it.
“I told her enough to make the story sound true. I would go on the internet and download pictures on to my phone and send them to her bolstering my story that I travelled a lot.
“Simple rules: find something to say, find common interests to talk about, research them, where they live, everything they talk about.
“Have a story, a good one and live it. Research it. If you say you are in banking, watch the web sites. When she asks: ‘Have you had a good day?’ you can say yes or no because you know the markets have gone up or down.
“Gradually add a few problems, softly, softly. Don’t overdo it.”