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Feb. 24, 2022

Dating Swindler Red Flags!

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Dating Swindler Red Flags

We Seenagers are all about encouraging romance. It's fun and burns calories. Very few people we know who are single or single again love dating apps. Still, most will give them a whirl because they're bored yet hopeful because who's got time to spend all day cruising a produce aisle.

We know some fantastic online dating success stories, so we don't want to discourage anyone from 'trying' because many great people are out there.

Netflix film 'Tinder Swindler' is creating a lot of buzz. The horror stories of women being conned out of money by a creep.  The Official Seenagers, we are doing our part to help protect your hearts and wallets. Especially if you're a woman but please note, men get scammed too.


You'd think that would be something only an idiot would do, but Julie Spira, America's #1 Cyber-dating expert, says.

 "Sometimes, they are the smartest women. The smartest women have access to the funds. The smarter the woman, the easier the con."

Julie added, "These sociopaths have a way of picking out the vulnerable ones who are lonely and need comfort. " That goes for sociopaths who look for vulnerable men too!"

Julie says that scammers on dating apps are usually 'out of the country' and typically will quickly try and move your conversation off the dating site to another place like 'What's App' or whatever.

MORE RED FLAGS to keep you from being romantically scammed in the latest episode of The Official Seenagers like:


(I share a doozy of a story from back when that still makes my eyeballs bulge)

Of course, Charlie and I share ridiculous and bizarre online dating stories, too, because that's what we do!

Julie Spira is an author and media personality on the subjects of online datingsocial mediamobile dating, and netiquette. She wrote The Perils of Cyber-Dating:Confessions of a Hopeful Romantic Looking for Love Online.[1] Spira has written about the intersection of love and technology for numerous publications.


Dating Swindler Red Flags

Charlie Ponger 0:01

Hey everyone, welcome to the official teenagers. Hey dad.

Debbie Nigro 0:05

Charlie, what are you doing? You got a great voice anybody ever tell you that? You sound great on this podcast? Thank

Unknown Speaker 0:09

you babe. I've heard that a few times. They

Debbie Nigro 0:11

know you sound like a really deep voice guy and I sound like glue rolls. Wow, that's a woman with a deep voice. Did you watch any television because there's a show on TV that's getting a lot of reaction. It's called the tinder swindler. It's on Netflix top 10 Disturbing backstory about the dating world.

Unknown Speaker 0:30

I did watch it.

Unknown Speaker 0:30

Okay, romance scam. You ever been scammed?

Unknown Speaker 0:34

Almost, almost. I swear I must

Debbie Nigro 0:37

have been scammed to have and you would think as a bright woman than I would know from new row right now recently cuz I've been with the same guy who I loved for, you know, a decade. You know, I didn't like online dating. I don't like dating at all. But I experienced the online world. Most people who are vulnerable can get themselves regardless of how smart they are in dopey situations. Like you're everybody's finding out about with this Tinder swindler, which is about a guy who went to a lot

Charlie Ponger 1:05

of a lot of trouble. Oh, my saw it was insane.

Debbie Nigro 1:09

Scam women. He's like, Oh, I just want to meet women. But he would he did. The average person does not do which is completely legally change his name. Yeah, to pretend he was part of a billionaire Diamond Family. I can't even change my license my divorce name often for 12 years. Now, it's actually 30 years,

Unknown Speaker 1:26

I can't even change my last name back to our legal name.

Debbie Nigro 1:29

So this guy went to a lot of trouble. So I had to find out because obviously i We've all made mistakes in our life and to be human is to try and try and we're more apt to trust the not trust, right. And then when that's blown apart, it just destroys people, and really hurts people, not financially. And there's a whole thing about money we're going to talk about, but also really emotionally

Unknown Speaker 1:51

PSTD or whatever. It's

Debbie Nigro 1:53

PTSD, which is not like ADHD, which I also have, but I also have PTSD. Do you have any other acronyms? I got a lot consonants. So I went to a gal pal of mine. Yeah, who is if you can believe this a growing up from college, but she became the country's, like, online dating expert. I wonder how she got into that. She just kept dating. Oh, and just kept going. She was on morning shows. And she's on the television this week talking about Tinder swindler. I'm like, I gotta get Julie spire on this. So she's gonna join us? Yeah, because I want her to speak to like, Who Who are these women? This has been particular women in the tinder swindler who got convinced to give up millions of dollars to this incredible, horrible person. Like I actually asked her or the other idiots, right? I'm sorry. I mean, you know, you have to be an idiot to do this. And she said, No, what she said, What'd she say? No. It's usually very bright people. Because they're the ones with the money. Oh,

Julie Spire 2:55

yes. Sometimes they are the smartest women because the smartest woman had the access to the funds. And the smarter the woman, the easier they're going to con you see these on these nighttime TV shows, and dateline and several others. And what happens is, I think, you know, I'm was reading on the FTC people 70, not to report at the highest median loss at about $9,000. Of course, in the film, there was one woman who parted with $250,000 that she didn't have, she actually took out a line of credit. So so. So it's not for someone that's naive. In fact, it could be a sophisticated business person who's so focused on work, but they're lonely, and their boyfriend broke up with them, or their husband met them for someone else. Or in many cases, they're widowed women, who, you know, who are just lonely, and when they meet someone, and they have another chance at love with someone who says, I love you very quickly, and they contact them constantly through chat, you suddenly have this connection with someone that you didn't think it would happen again. So no, the naive ones aren't the ones with the big wallet.

Debbie Nigro 4:08

So let's talk about men, Charlie. Yeah. Do you think men get scammed as much as or as often as women?

Charlie Ponger 4:16

Well, I don't know about, you know, I've never talked to a guy like about that stuff. Because maybe they're embarrassed, but I can tell you what happens to me. Okay. Even on Twitter, and Facebook, mostly, these women will connect with you, right? Want to be your friend, they'll post something on your page, because I'm a public page for our official teenager stuff. And all except, and then the next thing you know, one leads things leads to another and they're starting to figure out sort of like if you have money or not, Oh, really. And I say things like, hey, you know, I'll kind of somehow figure in a way to say like you went to I have been trained by the FBI is

Unknown Speaker 4:57

where you're a little bit out The dating sites little bit.

Charlie Ponger 5:01

Well, you convinced me to be on? I think you should on that one dating site. It's a big mistake for me. I'm not Oh, no,

Debbie Nigro 5:07

no, no, I'm gonna tell you why good. It's not a big mistake. It's still a very good way to meet people. We're in a weird place in the world, this has become very commonplace. And there are really good people who want to connect. And what you need to do in order to have it work is you need to let that other person know that you are a real person, they can check you out. Who doesn't Google somebody?

Charlie Ponger 5:26

Well, I'm, I'm an open book on on that dating site, right? Oh, yeah, for sure. Okay, like, I'll talk to people and you know, if they want my phone number, I'll give it to them. And the whole deal. Oh, the whole thing. And I'll give them my last name and the whole thing. Yeah,

Debbie Nigro 5:39

I, you know, what? I don't haven't seen your page. But say if I only have

Charlie Ponger 5:43

one pet one photo? And what photo is it? It's the photo of us? That's wrong. It's like the one photo I don't really have, you know,

Unknown Speaker 5:51

what do you mean? Is that you put us no, no,

Unknown Speaker 5:54

no, it's just a picture of me that we

Charlie Ponger 5:56

refresh. But, um, one of the signs that somebody might be a scammer if we're guy, for example, is that, you know, they tend to pretend they have all this stuff. They posed front of the plane. I got cars and fancy this, when you don't have any of that. Yes.

charlie ponger 6:14

So yes, there are some No, there are some women that will post the fancy car and the and the, and, you know, being in St. Barts and all this sort of stuff, right? Oh, yeah. And they'll say they just want true love and all that sort of stuff. And a lot you

Unknown Speaker 6:30

should put up there if you want to attract a woman that heated toilet. In my bathroom,

Debbie Nigro 6:36

with the remote, spray, whatever. Yeah. Come on over. Yeah. So the man let's go back to man. Yeah. So guys do get ripped off as we do

Charlie Ponger 6:46

guys get ripped off? A lot. I mean,

Debbie Nigro 6:50

you don't really and girls who set up guys, I think who have money. It's play him. I hear

Charlie Ponger 6:55

the story. You know, we never guys never really talk about it. Because in part, they're totally embarrassed about it.

Debbie Nigro 7:00

romance scams don't have to happen online. They happen in bars across all over the place. Yeah. And then everybody wants to believe that somebody really thinks they're the tickets, you

Charlie Ponger 7:11

know, right. Yeah. You know, Marilyn Monroe said it right. By the way. She goes, You know, there's a trade off. Men want pretty women and women want men that have a lot of money. And that's like, almost like a barter deal or something. I don't know.

Debbie Nigro 7:31

I want to give another scam warning here because Julie's fire was very, very clear. There are some red flags man. And I'm so glad that the married people listening to this like I'm so glad we're

Charlie Ponger 7:41

not dealing with I'm actually trained in this truly so flags. Yeah.

Debbie Nigro 7:44

Okay. One red flag, as a romance scam is when you meet somebody online, and they try and quickly move you off to another like site like WhatsApp or something problems. So Julie spyera, who's the dating, online dating expert in the country had something to say about that? Oh, let's listen.

Julie Spire 8:03

It is a sign, not a fact. If someone sends you a message, and immediately they say, I'd like to chat with you at this Yahoo account, or let's chat on WhatsApp. Don't do it. There's a reason we have all of these safety measures in these dating apps. And they make it very easy to report suspicious profiles. Keep your communications with somebody you don't know, within the dating app, because that's where they have the chat features. And that's where it's easy to sort of track the communication history. In the case of Simon Yes, he was on WhatsApp for for phone calls for texts or videos, everything audio messages. So he he ran off to WhatsApp and I'm not saying don't use WhatsApp. But WhatsApp is usually a sign if somebody says Let's get off match and go on WhatsApp. Say no, like I'd rather continue to chat here.

Debbie Nigro 8:55

In the continuing pointing out some of the red flags for romance scams. One of the things is if you're talking to somebody online, and you keep trying to make plans but you never quite figure out how to meet the person in person that's intentional on their part. You don't know that. Like I and I'm embarrassed to tell you that back when was a long time ago. I so loud, it gives me the creepiest telling you the story. Well, there was a guy and you're holding your boobs out of my chest chest pains thinking about this bastard. Anyway, he got you know, it was like I was I was in a dark place and I was hopeful that maybe this was something and then we go to meet now a tree fell down this fell down wires it down to a storm here or there. So finally after like, I don't know how many times of not meeting we were going to meet a Grand Central Station. Okay. And this is what happened to me true story I can't even talk about I'm gonna take the train down. Maybe it was nervous. I was nervous. And I got there and we were going to meet it. I was, I don't know, I was texting about what train I was on. So it's kind of going on till I got there. And I'm looking around looking around looking around and there never was a human. Nobody ever showed up. Even after all the way texting on down your like he said he was coming on his way that boy yeah, meet you that whatever it was I stood there and I got so freaked out that somebody was staring at me from somewhere. And then stones on then saw me and thought, Oh, gross. And now I hate myself. And now I hate this person. And I didn't know what to do with myself. And I thought maybe I'm missing Mr. Misunderstood. Your stutter. And then I started getting Rayji like, Oh, I am going to flip out and then I was embarrassed and I was humiliated and all these things. And then I finally I called him because I had his number. Yeah. And he acted like, it was like no big deal. I was there. But I had something crazy. And I were I remember what cam is stalking you. You're something crazy. You felt it? Yeah, I felt it. But believe it. And it was horrible. And then I thought, oh, then I was wild woman in Manhattan all by myself. Like what am I doing with this? Yeah, how do we do it this and then you got on the train. We came back home. Six Now had I went to have a couple of drinks first. Ring, you know, for you. Right. So that whole story about who you meet at the bar is when you by yourself? Yeah. So we'll do another show on that.

Charlie Ponger:

Right. So I we will I first of all, in the wintertime I'm a bit of a hermit right. Secondly, our show keeps us surprisingly very busy. Keeps me very, very busy. So I I am very interested in meeting a couple of people that I met on that dating app for fun. And I always say look, you know, I don't know. But right now, I'm so busy. It's so cold, if you want to meet me, and I hope that you know. And I guess now that you say this, it sounds like a put off based on what you're telling me. But I shouldn't have been on that dating app. And

Debbie Nigro:

well, you think the thing is if you are ready. And you're honorable? Yeah, much, which so many people are right. I really do help you don't give up on finding the right connection. And it's very hard to find it just like at the supermarket or just walking down as well. That

Charlie Ponger:

was on the TV on the on the documentary. A woman said it's hard to meet someone at the grocery store or wherever else the bar, whatever. Yeah, but that's like, the only place I'm really comfortable in terms of like being online and trying to do this thing.

Debbie Nigro:

Yeah, I have to take you on tour because I'm a good wing girl. Yeah, maybe maybe something like that. And my love of my life in the in a dive bar. How dive bars are friggin best. Okay, let's get away. I want to talk to other people red flag, Julie spire had something very important to say about the fact that, you know, it happens that people, you know, obviously you're busy. But when somebody says they're too busy to get together after you've tried to connect on an online dating tip on some warnings, you should you should be terrible person. So let's see what you have to say.

Julie Spire:

Yes, so when a too busy to get together, it's usually because they aren't who they say they are. And if anyone's watched the TV show catfish, you can see that there's constant chat with someone. And not only are they too busy to get together, they'll make plans, and then they'll cancel them. And then they'll put plans again and get you all excited about finally meeting for the first time. And then they'll use their demanding work schedule as as a reason to have to postpone getting together of which they never had any intention of getting together. If it gets your money, they basically pull their profile down and then move on to another target.

Charlie Ponger:

So Deb, your friend Julie since seems like a really cool egg, you know?

Debbie Nigro:

Well, it's funny, we didn't we weren't like hanging around in college, but we're in the communication school together that Ithaca College so we just had fondness for each other and friendship. And I always supported her and every time I saw on TV or in the news, I'm like, wow, yeah, you know, and, you know, I share on your social media that I'm a proud friend. That's great. So I asked her to be on the show when I thought it was important. I think romance scams need to be discussed. And again it's you know, it's really smart people usually who are vulnerable and hoping for the better of things

It's a scary world it was so much easier back then so very

simply do not give anybody money ever give anybody money if they ask you not give anybody money don't offer the money right and then you know to vet somebody you know if somebody's willing to give you a last name and where they work you can you can find and check them out. That's lovely. It's honorable give somebody the other person a chance to really check you out that you're a real person unless you don't want to give your last name which case she said maybe do a zoom do a video scope. meeting somebody on a video date is really a great first way to that hey to while she said it if they don't want to do it then that's your example of a prime example

Charlie Ponger:

of I shouldn't I shouldn't even think about dating this is ridiculous okay,

Debbie Nigro:

you're gonna have this everybody who hears your voice goes Oh, is Charlie single I was matter of fact he is. And so yeah, your friends. A lot of people have heard you like he's think like, Oh, yes, he is. And he's a lovely person. I'll introduce you.

Charlie Ponger:

You don't say I'm nice looking? You

Debbie Nigro:

just say he's a little i Come on. I give A lot of I tell them a lot of things. I can't tell you every Okay, I just can't. That's it for today's C major deficiency. Yeah, by the way, we're gonna be having correspondents. Yeah. Every state in the country official funny

Charlie Ponger:

people agree with I can't wait. That's gonna be fun. Yeah, and let's do a little promo for ourselves at the end, right? We're almost in. We're almost now we almost have listeners in every state in the United States. Thank you, everyone so much for that. We really appreciate it. Go to our website, read our blogs.

Debbie Nigro:

Oh, yeah. And by the way, it's really about having some fun and laughing Yeah, that things we can't control because we are in a stage of life where, hey, we're still here. Yeah. And we're trying to pretend like hey, we're gonna be here forever and no, that's not the case. So let's have as much fun as possible, without hurting ourselves until we can

Charlie Ponger:

and share share if you know how to do this because we are seeing pictures. If you can just share this and pass it on to someone else who you think might enjoy my phone

Julie Spira is an author and media personality on the subjects of online dating, social media, mobile dating, and netiquette. She wrote The Perils of Cyber-Dating: Confessions of a Hopeful Romantic Looking for Love Online. Spira has written about the intersection of love and technology for numerous publications.