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After surviving cancer, Dori Hartley was in a five year online relationship with a scammer pretending to be a cancer patient named "Dimitri." Throughout the relationship, "Dimitri" refused to show Dori a picture of his face, claiming he felt embarrassed by how he looked with cancer Dori's recent psychological trauma caused her to rationalize this suspicious activity for a shot at love with someone who also experienced the same pain and suffering she did.
Victims project their own perceptions on suspicious behavior because they desperately want their online relationship to succeed.
The optimism bias causes legitimate users of online dating websites to underestimate their own risk of encountering an online romance scam.
Popular films, such as You've Got Mail and Must Love Dogs, feature protagonists who meet online, fall in love, and live happily ever after.The evolution of technology in scams can be analyzed through three case-studies: those committed by William Thompson, H. Thompson built personal relationships with strangers on the street and asked to borrow their valuable pocket-watches before disappearing. Holmes took advantage of the technology showcased at the 1893 Chicago World's Fair to become one of the first documented American serial killers.Through this practice, Thompson was dubbed by the media as the first "Confidence Man." His success was based on his attractiveness, personal relations skills, and his ability to identify potential victims. Holmes preyed on visitors to the fair, offering them a place to stay or companionship before taking their lives.These operations may be individual, amateur efforts, or executed by larger crime syndicates based overseas .Entrenched criminal organizations have greater resources to set up more believable scams, like those featuring the invented "John Scofield," a well-connected, handsome character living in Florida; Scofield's profile was used simultaneously in multiple scams around the country All demographics are at risk for online dating scams. But I don’t really know that the guy doesn’t love me.