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And there are dozens of other fraud games being played out on Twitter and other platforms.
I've been gathering anecdotal data from a number of such accounts as they've attempted to prepare me for a lure.
This suggests that there's a high level of sophistication to this latest wave of fakers. I get about three direct message requests per week that start off with a simple "hi" or the more come-hither "hi honey." Sometimes, these messages are from individual accounts (or maybe groups) who claim to be women who "just want to chat and make friends." Often, these are slow-moving affairs—probably because the people on the other end are involved in trying to reel in multiple fish.
The approach used by the fraudster varies with the target.
Although flirting is more common, others are more direct.
In the case above, "she" claimed to be from Michigan and, when pressed for more details, said she was originally from "Newcastle UK." "She" could not provide coherent details about either location.
The accounts sometimes use the same name as the person from whom they've harvested images.
Other times, they use some variant of it to throw off people who might do some surface-level investigating, making it look like they've just set up a secondary account.
But they apparently do well enough to support a very large-scale operation.
They follow the same MO as "Robin Sage:" harvesting images from various social media and Web sources to create a persona that is believable to the type of victims they stalk—gullible men and women susceptible to flattery from an apparently attractive stranger in need.