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Ask An Army Spouse: Dating a Soldier Online Scam

These scams where you believe you are dating a soldier are becoming more and more common. They seem to come up with new ways to run the scam on a daily basis. If the person you are speaking to requests money in any form, cut off all communication. Here are some more signs you’re involved in a dating scam.

Scam: Form Letter to Request Time Off

Hi.. i have a .. I found a soldier online.. We have been talking for quite sometime and he says he loves me.. Well I just found out that he was courting two women. Myself and another women.. I mean he was playing us both. He was even writing us the same letters.. Like a cut an paste thing.. Well us girls found out about each other and busted him.. Well to make things short.. He ended up picking me.. I am leery about everything he says now.. I don’t know if he is really in love with me or just playing me to get some time off.. See he wants to marry me he says.. He wants me to write a letter to the army requesting time off so we CAN get married.. I am not sure if this is a scam that the guys pull, to keep themselves busy..He doesn’t want to talk about where we will go when he gets back.. My house or his house.. Just keeps saying we can talk about if and when he gets leave time.. Do you think I am being paranoid or now that he has made his decision and picked me. Is he sincere.. He isn’t going to use me for time off and then blow me off when he gets back to the states.. I need some advice.. I really like him and I want to trust him.. But need to know if this is what the men do for amusement.. Up for any suggestions and advice.. Thanks Michelle

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The entire thing would make me very leery, personally. The thing that sticks out most to me is him asking you to write to request time off for him so he can get married. This is simply not how the Army works. The Army does not process requests for time off from the girlfriend (or wife for that matter) of a soldier. It is up to him to put in a request for time off. Some units will not even allow individual time off and the soldier can only have leave when the unit as a whole takes it.

You didn’t mention if he is deployed, but I’m willing to bet that after you request his leave time, he will then request money to be able to take the leave. Nearly every scam I’ve been informed of in the past few months has included this.

He should also be willing to tell you where he is, where he is stationed, where you would both live after getting married, etc. Do you know what unit he is assigned to? Has he given you an AKO email address (his name @ us.army.mil)? I would definitely ask more questions. And if he asks you for money, you should cut off contact with him.

Good luck!

Scam: Sending Email to Request Phone Line and Paying For It

I have been chatting with a man who said he is in the Army and is in Iraq. he would like to talk on the phone and said there is protocol to follow. I am to send a e-mail requesting to get connected with him, he said there is a fee and then all calls are free.  He also mentioned something about registering and then I can request for him to get leave. This is the first time I have ever done anything like this and I am not sure its real. Is there a way to find out if this person is really in the Army? Any suggestions would be great. Thank you.

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I am afraid this is most likely a scam. When soldiers are overseas, there is no reason for other people to be paying for their communication. They make more money when they are deployed than when they are stateside and generally have less expenses. Also, almost every post in Iraq and Afghanistan has MWR phone lines available where the soldiers can call home at no charge.

There is also no reason for you to request for him to get leave. This is something that he has to do. The Army is not going to recognize a leave request from a civilian. In other cases that I have been informed of, the request is typically granted and then an outrageous amount of money (in the thousands) is requested to purchase a flight. This is a scam as well as soldiers do not have to pay for their flights in or out of Iraq or Afghanistan.

I’m sorry he has tried to scam you.

Scam: Paying for an Internet Connection Overseas

I have met a soldier online,  seems nice. We have beem talking for quite sometime now and he says he’s deployed to Afghanistan and will be going to iraq for 3months so he will not be able to chat online. He told me to write to ts2militarycall. They wrote back saying I should subscribe with a fee of 524. What I want to know is are there no internet connections in Iraq and is there a cheaper way to call? He says he’s a sergeant. Is this another scam?

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Yes, this is a scam. In almost all cases, he has access to the internet as well as phones through the MWR in both Iraq and Afghanistan. Depending on where he is, he may not be able to call very often but it would be very unlikely for it to be completely impossible. There’s also no reason why YOU should be paying for it. He makes more money as a deployed soldier than he makes when he is stateside. If he wants additional communication capabilities, he can easily afford the cost to do it.

I’m sorry.

Scam: Paying for His Leave from Overseas

I have a few concerns and i need to know if my gut instinct is telling me the right thing, before someone i care for ends up seerioulsy hurt or scammed for money she doesn’t have. My sister has been speaking with a guy who is in the army and is apparently a sargent. He has been telling her that he will be coming to see her when he can get a leave. Also, she should be getting a verification number shortly from the base , and then she will be gettting his leave money as he has put her down as his next of kin. this money will not be in a cheque form as the army has to be careful of fraud. therefore they will be using western union for the transaction. I have tried to tell my sister this all sounds like a hoax, but she is falling for this MIKE guy fast. He apparently has 2 children who attend a boarding school. I can not for the life of me , see how this so called sargent would want to give up his life long ambition in the army to be the boyfriend of a woman who he has never personally met. Do you have any insight to this concern. if my thoughts are true, how do i break this news to her.
Look forward to hearing from you SOON.

*****
This is a scam. There is no transfer of funds when they go on leave. The Army pays for their leave during a deployment. They will pay for them to travel to any destination they choose. The only requirement is that they fly back to the combat zone from the same location. I’m sorry.

Scam: Completing Leave Forms to Return from Deployment

I met a girl online. For two months she seemed nice. Then she said I could request leave on her behalf and she gave me an email address. I wrote to it. They answered immediately asking me to fill out 1 form. I did it. The next day they asked me to Western Union $2350 to her replacement in Ecuador and she would be granted leave within 12 hrs. After this, since I had been skeptical for a while, I called her on it and she erupted. The forms have two other “officers” names on them. The forms were so bogus. They listed the Dept of Defense at an address not in the Pentagon, but at Washington DC, WA. Since I called her on the scam, she said I better be careful before I get myself in trouble and that she knows where I live and my child’s name. Is this a common scam? Should I be worried? I have all the forms and documentation and IP address. Help me.

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This is becoming a very common scam. First, the military does not ask civilians (relatives or otherwise) to write to request leave for a soldier. This is all handled by the soldier. Secondly, there would not be an exchange of money involved with it.

Quite a few that have contacted me about similar scams have said they and their families were threatened when they refused to send money (or refused to send more money). If I were in your shoes, I would contact the authorities in your area. You may also contact a CID (Criminal Investigation Division) for the branch of service she was claiming to be.

About the author: Stacey is an Army wife of a soldier who joined in 2003. He has since been medically retired but she continues to provide information to Army wives and families to make their adjustment to the Army lifestyle easier. Connect with Stacey: Facebook Twitter Pinterest

{ 262 comments… add one }
  • Sonia December 15, 2016, 7:37 pm

    Does anybody heard of Steve Frank Rock, who supposed to be stationed in Yemen. Has two kids, boy & girl in Washington DC. We been texting for a year and a half and never asked me for money, until now that he asked me for BTA money or airline won’t let him get on the plane. Do soldiers have to pay BTA , when they flying back to the USA when they retiring? Now he says he will comit suicide so that the Taliban will kill him. I told him if he loved his kuds, he wouldn’t hurt them. He is passed cause I don’t believe him about the BTA. Do they have to pay that when going back to the U.S?

  • Karen Inman May 9, 2017, 2:02 am

    What dose the United Nation have to do with the United States Army

  • Shelly May 10, 2017, 2:57 pm

    Been talking with someone who says hes in Afghanistan.. But when I ask for a picture and his division or rank he says he is not allowed to give it out or he will lose his job. Is this true?

  • Joy May 11, 2017, 6:07 am

    How about this one..he told me to write a letter to this Gmail acct.usmilitary deployed branch. ..at Gmail. .is it true?help me for this..

  • lex May 17, 2017, 9:40 am

    scam??
    stay in contact with sgt Jessica Jones and want that i fill a form to become her next of kin ???!!!

  • Sally May 28, 2017, 1:53 pm

    Scammed but no money given. Deployed secret mission. Request me to ask Army for leave to states. Researched this and realized it was scam. Really angry

  • ana June 3, 2017, 11:23 am

    I meet a guy he said his name sgt William Barnett now he is in Egypt. He work as Navy officer in US.

    Is this person exist?? Just know him for two days and he want to meet me. He need a vacation leave so that he can meet me, he said i need to send an email to his commander Evan Bowens and send an email to Militaryzone1usa@gmail.com

    How should i react? Please let me know
    Thank you

  • Julie Carmean June 5, 2017, 9:00 am

    I have been talking to several so called military men claiming to love me and want to be with me. the minute they ask for money I stop talking to them. has anyone heard if these so called military men sgt. Carmen SmSgt. major Dennis Williams or Dennis Porter are these men scammers . I got scammed before won’t let it happen again. please let me know if you have dealt with these men

  • Kimberly June 6, 2017, 1:10 am

    OK I have always thought that Haas Dolphin was scamming me then all of the sudden he says that some of the army went to Nigeria to help them learn how to fight. Well anyways there is a money gram in my name with 1000 dollars on it and Haas says that I need to send the money to Nigeria for the RED CROSS. Now I am not be leaving this 100% But what about the money order. I mean really this man calls me and everything else. I just want to know if it is a scammer or is it a real soldier. Please help me

  • Miel June 9, 2017, 2:40 pm

    Hi, I have met this guy named Andy Qulgley Johnson via Facebook. He told me he is already 42 yrs old and a widow. he said he is a captain and was deployed in West Africa. He took vows of his love to me and would like to marry me despite of me having 2 kids already. after having conversation/connection with him for the past week. He ask me that he would like to visit me here in Philippines. However he is asking for $100 to pay off the leave request and that i should talk to his commandant about this. When i ask why there is a payment, he said about registering me as his wife and for him to be traceable when he visited me and of course it is because he has a high rank and he needed to end the deployment as early as possible as it is supposed to be 6months special training. good thing i have found this website and never have sent money to him yet. do you happen to know this person is really in US army? please let me know thank you i need your help

  • Angelie June 12, 2017, 1:13 am

    Hi sir,can i ask if the person claiming for being army or military is necessary ask to write letter for his superior to get leave form because im chatting with so-called military guy asking me to write his superior for leave form im very confused about it.he told me he is major sergeant rank8 i need advice.

  • Dana June 13, 2017, 1:51 am

    Have you heard of a sge6 staff sargeant named, Dave Pacheco? I am currently talking to him. He claimed that he is a real soldier on deployment to Cameroon, Nigeria. He asked me to lend him money because he’s starving since he couldn’t eat the food there and the food gave him stomach ache. He said his debit card doesn’t work there .

    Please help ASAP. Thank You!

  • Aline ness June 19, 2017, 2:42 pm

    I met this army guy online and then he was shipped out to Allepo, Syria about month ago and now we have decided we want to be together and he talked with his CC officer told him to have me write and ask personal leave , so I did and supposedly it was approved. I have text to verify all this, . Then he and his CC officer got price for one way ticket to my home state which was 1700$ and then was told I needed to send a money gran to a certain address with the receipt and l was to let them know when he arrived ! He says the reason I need to pay is because he doesn’t have enough time over there for army to fly him out !! I’m thinking this Don’t make sense plus all emails I sent went to a .com address . I would think army would be .gov. This is just not adding up but wanted a second opinion!! Thank you for any help you can give me ! Sincerely Aline

    • Lisa ray July 29, 2017, 7:19 am

      What’s his name

  • Lori Walden July 3, 2017, 11:14 am

    I have been talking to a guy who says he’s stationed in Iraq and from North Carolina. Says his name is Michael Higgenbothem and he’s a sargent in the army. After taking for a couple weeks on a “DoD” phone he has asked me to empty my credit card and give him the number, that he would keep it safe. He is trying to have the army financier wire money so I can help his ailing mother. We have talked for hours and he has expressed his love to me. After having just gotten out of an abusive marriage I’m feeling sick that this is probably a scam and he’s been playing with me. I got on to look up the security he reassured me there was on his phone if I send my card info. Something didn’t sit right with me. Please tell me if my suspicions are right. I hoped it was legitimate, that id found an amazing guy. Shame on these people! Yesterday we even got in an argument about trust and he’d said it hurt him. That was my first red flag. Enough time has passed now since we started talking that I’ve been really falling in love with him! He too like others here has never said where he’d live when he’s out. Only that he’s trying as soon as he can to be released from service to care for his mother, daughter, and me. I REALLY didn’t want this to be a scam 🙁

  • Heather July 10, 2017, 8:25 am

    I meant a guy who says I need to send 500 to the Un so he could get a EEPC DR. ANTHONY Williams James in Tel Bide Base in Syria he has even sent pics I need to know the truth if it is him or not?? Thanks

    • Joe joe July 30, 2017, 5:08 pm

      Hello to keep this short I meet a guy name Dr. Anthony Leo Whealth in syria. We haven’t been talking long but we have been talking about beening together and he was telling me that the only way we could was for me to fill out a farm called vacation with the US .HE SENT ME PICTURES just as well and I wanted to see if it was the same guy that has been talking to you

  • Michelle July 11, 2017, 1:14 am

    I met a guy named Alex Wayne and he says he is army. He has been in Army for almost 35 years. He says he is a 2 star major general. He is asking me to fill out a vacation form for him as his wife. Can I do that? How can I find out if he is lying?

  • Ann Lowes July 11, 2017, 3:16 am

    I recieved a green army wife form for cory michael bristol its an 80a form hes a marine at patterson camp ohio.. It says pay §268 to a gonzalez

  • Lala July 12, 2017, 6:18 pm

    Meet a guy on the internet ..chatted back and forth for a long long time..
    Now he tells me I need to register as his girlfriend in order for us to talk on the phone..is that true? Sounds fishy..i asked why he said security clearance..
    Somebody please shed some light on this..
    Thank you.
    Sincerely….
    Suspicious

  • criselda July 17, 2017, 2:20 am

    i met a guy on online he wantS to request me for him vacation but he said i need to pay $100 for fiancee form this is true ? that for request of fiancee form have fee

    • cris July 29, 2017, 2:34 am

      my man ask me $250. for fiancè form…..too bad. is it true

  • Raven Simmons July 21, 2017, 5:29 am

    So I’ve been talking to this guy James D. kingsley for a few weeks. Seems like a nice guy. But lately he has asked me to open a bank account so he can transfer money into it, to access his deployment pay. This doesnt sound right. Don’t they get access to all pay while there? Says he’s a E-6 staff sergeant. Which is fine and dandy, stationed over seas. Could this be a legit? He hasn’t asked me for money, nor to fill out any kind of papers for him. What do you think????

    • Stacey Abler July 27, 2017, 10:54 pm

      He has access to his bank account regardless of where he is.

  • Jennifer VanBuren July 23, 2017, 9:18 am

    Are fiance forms, military wife id and leave forms real. I am asked alot lately to request for leave form. Its 1000$ i will not sendbas i know im probably being scammed as i have sent money in the past. I guess i just need to hear it from someone else so hard to believe these guys are good and i fell in love and i know im not alone

    • Stacey Abler July 27, 2017, 10:52 pm

      There’s no fiancee form and there’s no such thing as paying for leave.

  • Carole holland July 23, 2017, 9:25 am

    please I need to know if a Johnny Badell a E5 Sergeant in the US Army stationed in Iraq is he for real yes I have sent him money and I know it’s probably a scam I need to know if this guy is real or not talk about an old fool please I need to know the truth

  • Carole holland July 23, 2017, 9:28 am

    He said that he is sending a package to me I have already pay $16,000. still owe 6,000 he claims he is paying 3,000 and I pay the other 3,000

    • Stacey Abler July 27, 2017, 10:52 pm

      Oh my goodness, please don’t send any more money. This is a scam! I’m so sorry you’re out so much money. 🙁

  • Sandra July 24, 2017, 7:46 pm

    I was concerned after the first three days of texting back and forth. He wanted me to get on kik to text him and get off tinder all together. We were going to talk on the phone one night but he said he was unable
    To get a international phone card. First red flag. Then said I’d I wanted to be able to talk to him I would have to get one. I told him that wasn’t happening. So we continued texting on kik. Due to time differences and texting we texted in intervals. He said he was Nathan Fair 3 tour in Chad Republic. The only other information I was able to get was he said his birth date is 9/10/1966 and a E6 Staff Sargent over 12 men originally from Hanford California. Conversation went ok but he started to talk about wanting to take leave and us being to tether forever. Another red flag. I played him for a while to see was this real or not but told him I would in no way do anything that would require me using my personal information. Then the trust issue was dealt with. Then he changed subjects keeping conversation light. And he kept coming back to leave having to be now. And I needed to get not one but two prepaid debit cards for him to transfer his money to so in hold send it to a agent and he could come home. I told him I needed find out and educate myself about them and bought time
    To research more about the army. I had dated military in my younger days and have retired military friends, who I had not a asked them
    Anything yet. I was able to find and read a lot of the information posted so when he wouldn’t say where he did basic training and said they didn’t have a post office available for me to mail him a birthday surprise I knew he was a scam and advised him that I lived near a large base with friends and I was going to block him until they could get me some information to confirm you are real or not. Yea that didn’t go over to well and I repeated him and reported him to both tinder and kik. I would like to know if this soilder is even alive. I would like to put him on my prayer list if he is. The last text I sent to who ever was you don’t even know the God I serve and the one you so readily use his words in his book to hurt our American soidlers and the people who care about them. You better get to know him and ask him in your life bc I have a have prayed a prayer for all of you that are doing this to stop and my Jesus won’t stop till he’s will is done. There isn’t a place you can go to hide from him. You better start ducking. Yes I am a prayer warrior and believe I had this experience so I could pray about this situation. But like I said I would like to know about the soilder whom he claimed to be and if alive keep him in my prayers.

  • Belinda July 25, 2017, 11:27 am

    I have been talking to a captain in Afghanistan. He wants to come home to be with me. He said I had to send a request for fiance request form for him to get his leave. It costs 1000 for the form. Is this true. I already sent 200 dollars.do I send the rest????

    • Belinda July 25, 2017, 11:44 am

      Does it cost 1000 dollars for a fiance request form for a deployed soldier to come home?

      • Stacey Abler July 27, 2017, 10:49 pm

        No, there’s no such thing as even making that request.

        • Lind August 7, 2017, 1:20 pm

          Pls I need ur help I been talking with this guy since January and I know I make the mistake to send him money over $2000 he said he wanna be with me and married me but this is the 2nd time he said he got the air flight ticket and never maid it to Los Angeles, CA. He said his in Africa but he never show he always said excuses pls help to find out if this is scam his name is Henry Costello pls let me know I really need ur help thanks

          • Stacey Abler August 11, 2017, 11:59 am

            Please quit sending him money. This is a scam. He’ll continue to create excuses as long as he thinks you’re going to send money.

  • May July 25, 2017, 5:09 pm

    I’ve been talking to a army for a couple weeks now. He recently asked for a itunes card. He said he needs it to complete an assignment. He has never asked for money and said he never will. He has sent me pics of him in uniform. Does the military use itune apps for assignments?

  • Adriane July 26, 2017, 11:27 pm

    I met a man on line about 2months ago. Griffin James Cockrell Roberts a 46y/o D.O.B August 10th who states that lives in San Jose, California. He claims he has a 7 year old son name Hunters who is in military school. Griffin mentioned his wife died from colon cancer. His both parents are deseased. He is stationed in Turkey, Islam R-6 sergeant we faced time but I wasn’t able to see him only his Facebook picture he also calls me with a different voice he says he’s protecting himself. He asked me to email his general I did, got a response to summit an identification number So, I did and got a response to pay $1290.00 he also send me a video of himself training some soldiers and him rock climbing and a picture of his bank account from Bank of America. Is this a scam??

  • Deborah VanderWal July 31, 2017, 6:28 pm

    I’m talking to a guy who wants to retire from the army…he says for me to help and say that I am his wife…do I have to help fill out this form…he’s waiting for me to get started…

  • Helena August 4, 2017, 7:10 am

    Hello,
    I met this guy on Tinder and he told me he was in Syria, fighting war. After a few months he mentioned we wanted to get released but it wasn’t easy, since a request to the department has to be made and if it gets approved, he will be released. For that I would have to be the person to pick him up at the nearest airport to me, I would be charge some admin fee though it will be refunded back in due time, I would be asked some questions about him and he would answer some questions about me… I am not sure whetther I should trust this. Am I being catfished? Thanks a lot!!

  • Diana Lincoln August 4, 2017, 7:41 am

    I have been taken to an army general John Johnson he has a girl she is in Africa he’s in Syria and she has been in hospital she is in the hospital needs a blood transfusion he’s saying that has to pay 300$for her to get it and the un won’t grant him leave that cost is 3000.00 they won’t give him emergency leave is this a scam

  • Rosa August 7, 2017, 2:45 am

    Has any one dealt. With Phillip wentz

  • Dawn Castro August 14, 2017, 9:07 pm

    I started talking to someone on line. we have been talking for a long time now. he gave me his full name. Rank and serial number. he is a Staff Sergeant. And he also gave me the base where he is stationed at. He even sent a pic of him in uniform. And he gave me the email for the U,S ARMY. But he said that I need to write the U,S Authorities to request a leave. so he can come and see me. he said he wants us to get married. But I have been lied to in the past. I would just like to know if this is real. he is bast out of New Jergsey so I caled that office and left a message as well. to try and find out what i can. and if you can help me thank you and God bless

  • Dawn Castro August 16, 2017, 2:26 pm

    I had been talking to different guys that side there in the Army and will be retiring soon. they all say they want to get married. I asked them to go on skype so that I could see them and hear their voice, but they said that they are not allowed to skype. they could lose their job’s. is this a lie or is it real? I did see one guy one time.but his mouth did not move. and he said it was just a bad connection, yet I could see him move around. Please tell me. are Army men allowed to go on skype and talk. or is this a lie. thank you kindly for your time.

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