The rationale is that this type of person is likely to be more desperate, gullible and financially stable.
They then post ads with fake profiles on online dating sites .
Some of the sophisticated scammers send cheap presents such as flowers or candy [from stolen credit cards] to capture the hearts of lonely women. They either advise that their employer pays them with Money Orders and they can't cash them in Nigeria or are having trouble cashing them.
Then they convince their soul mates to bank them into their bank account and then wire them the money via Western Union.
Often the scammers use attractive female photo profiles because lots of men will respond to an attractive woman's personal ad based on the photo alone.
They also tend to target middle-aged people looking for stable relationships.
The scammers choose chat rooms and dating sites because the person in love offers the chance of the biggest payoffs.
The Nigerian dating scams are often not easy to detect as the scammers are often highly educated, have exceptional patience and they do their homework!
However sooner or later, the vulnerable hearts receive requests that will ultimately lead to financial losses and heartbreak.
He supposedly was from Orlando (though his profile said he went to school in Miami), …
James Edmund, DOB 12/9/1978, Dutch, Mechanical Engineer Oil Rig Miami Tries to groom you to start off with followed by trying to induce empathy because he cannot cash a cheque for his two weeks job on an oil rig as his work …
They often pretend to be foreign specialists [from the US, UK or Canada, but can be any European country]temporarily working in Nigeria or other African country.
A slight twist is is when the scammer pretends to live in the same country as the victim, and once a relationship has developed, then advise they are required to go to a west African country on an assignment.
The scammers start by stealing a photo from an internet site.