By then, Morrison knew she was dealing with a scammer.

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Budgyk knows this from experience: A Nigerian scammer lifted photos from Budgyk's profile. Their photographs are also likely of someone else, and that would be tough to explain in person. He sent heart-wrenching photos of a young girl, who appeared to be his daughter's age, hooked to a raft of medical monitors.

He found out when he discovered his photos were on a romance scam site warning about the same Nigerian crook who had stolen his photos. If a profile indicates your match has a college degree, but he or she can't string a sentence together, you have reason to be suspicious. Commonly, when the victim proposes an in-person meeting, they'll come up with some excuse for why it can't happen: They're traveling, stationed overseas or have some long-distance emergency. Uncertain of whether she should believe the man, Kipps Googled "photos of sick children." And of course, the photographs she'd been getting via text message were public images posted online.

Most commonly, the excuse is "My membership on this site is almost up.

How about if we text or communicate though our personal phone/email?

Let's leave the site: Online dating sites have the ability to monitor and boot members who exhibit problematic behavior or are perpetrating scams, so con artists want to quickly move their victims elsewhere.

Beth Kipps, who has experimented with several dating sites, says the men who have attempted to con her almost always have a reason why they shouldn't continue to communicate via or e Harmony.

"He said he was going to pay me back double," she laughs.

Though the amounts and details of the scam vary from victim to victim, when it comes to romance scams, the con is almost always the same: The crook wants to get a besotted victim to wire money or provide access to a credit card.

Then the daughter became ill and had to be hospitalized.

When Morrison suggested that her suitor put his daughter on a plane to get better medical attention at home -- and even offered to pick the girl up at the airport -- a new crisis struck.

If the victim doesn't figure out the con after the first request for cash, the crook will keep milking the relationship for as much as he or she can get.