PHOENIX -- 3 On Your Side has exposed an Internet scam which uses our military personnel to bait victims. This one is really going to make you angry.
Our military men and women serving overseas have plenty to be concerned about, but now they have to worry about scammers using their identities in order to rip them off.
"I don't really meet a lot of people that I really want to go out with and I really don't have a lot of guys running their grocery carts into mine," Lisa Kiser said.
Kiser said the dating world is tough so she decided to take a new chance at love.
“Back in March of this year I decided for my birthday I was gonna sign up for Match.com and take a chance and try to meet somebody new,” Kiser explained.
Kiser said the website did help her find someone new, a guy by the name of Jimmy.
“He indicated he was in the United States Army and was stationed in Afghanistan,” stated Kiser.
Jimmy even sent Lisa photos of himself in uniform and out of uniform. During their emails, Kiser said Jimmy was a real Romeo and even sent her poems and songs.
“It was a really special song so that really got my heart tugging," Kiser said.
And after all that tugging, Jimmy took it one step further by saying he wanted to visit her.
But after he sent Kiser some kind of military link which required her to input some of her personal information, she became suspicious and alerted 3 On Your Side.
“Now these scammers are using not only these matchmaking websites but they're using the military photos and their identities to scam men and women and that's really scary," Kiser said.
Match.com tells 3 On Your Side they have blocked Jimmy from their site due to several other complaints they received about him.
And it turns out there is a real Jimmy in the Army, just not the one who contacted Kiser.
These days, scammers cut and paste photographs of legitimate military personnel like Jimmy and use their pictures and background to scam women like Kiser.
The United States Army even sent out this warning telling people about the Online Romance Scam and that the scammers are usually are from African counties using untraceable email addresses and bank accounts.
Kiser said she's glad didn't fall any further for Jimmy because it could have been costly.
“They're taking their time to meet women on these websites, get a relationship established learning more about them, learning what their weaknesses are and then preying on those weaknesses," Kiser added.
3 On Your Side tried contacting the man believed to be the real Jimmy via Facebook to let him know someone is using his picture and background to scam women, but he has yet to respond.
STATEMENT FROM MATCH.COM:
“While only a small number of our millions of subscribers have been scammed by the sophisticated criminals who prey on individuals in every corner of the web, we take this issue very seriously and we diligently address it on the site by tracking, monitoring and preventing fraud at every step of the way. It is also very important that people exercise common sense and prudence with individuals they have just met, whether through an online dating service or any other means, and we educate our customers and put tools in their hands to protect themselves and report any concerns.”-match.com