I was talking to a friend of mine who was going on and on about a guy she called Rico, whom she was dating. She was actually head over heels for this guy and even introduced him to her kids. Recently, however, I got a pretty frantic phone call from her. She said her identity had been used in several transactions involving the buying of expensive furniture and most recently, plastic surgery! Thousands of dollars. I sat down with her and went through everyone who could have recently gotten access to her personal information. She was pretty guarded with her personal information, but then she quickly mentioned “Rico,” and just as quickly dismissed the possibility of him being someone of interest in this credit card fraud. She was unsure of his last name because he had mentioned two last names, explaining he had been adopted as a teenager and sometimes used his old last name. As I pushed for more information, she kept denying that it could be him. I asked why. She gave me a long story about how their relationship had to end because he had been promoted and sent to Asia. I asked if she had heard from him since, and her answer was no, not to my surprise. That was the red flag that led me to dig deep enough into her story to find out Rico simply did not exist. I ran a check on him with the information she gave me and none of the details fit. Not either of his last names nor the company he said he worked with. As it turns out, my friend had been tricked into giving “Rico” her social security number a few weeks before he disappeared, because he told her she would add her to his credit card so that she can go shopping on his bill! She tried reaching Rico and the number was disconnected. She tried emailing him, and the email was sent back unrecognizable. He had left without a trace!
Rico robbed her identity by operating very smoothly under a pseudonym. How could she have prevented this?? First of all, nicknames and different last names are always a red flag. Ladies, when you come across a man who has a weird nickname like, the Joker, or M&M, or CJ, please call me so I can run a background check on him. I can quickly resolve whether this guy is real, says who he says he is, expose any criminal charges, or even find out if he is married! A simple background check will save you not just heartache, but financial ruin like in the case of my friend. It may take years for her to restore her credit. There are men out there stealing from women by charming them and taking them for fools. Don’t be fooled! If you are dating someone whom you know little about because he says he lives out of town, or travels and just has a nickname, let me run a background check on him before you get in too deep. Give me a call at 214-823-5600.
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