A Virginia woman said she was scammed out of $170,000 by a doctor she met on an online dating website.
Cassandra Drummond said she connected with Andrew Logan who portrayed himself as a doctor on BLK, a dating app marketed for Black singles in July 2021. She thought she found a potential partner but ended up falling victim to a phishing scam instead.
“I just took a chance thinking he was a doctor. Maybe this was real,” Drummond told ABC 7 News.
Scammers often use phishing schemes to disguise themselves as reputable companies through emails, other digital messages and websites to obtain sensitive information or things they shouldn’t have access to, according to the FBI.
Drummond said she lost much of her life savings because of the scheme.
“Dr. Logan” told Drummond he was working at a medical camp in Yemen for the summer but lived in Michigan. He had pictures on his BLK profile with a stethoscope and other photos of his family, she told Atlanta Black Star.
While talking on the phone and messaging for three months, he asked her to pay to ship personal items and cash to her home in Springfield, Virginia, and he would reimburse the costs when he returned to the states.
Logan used Elegant Freight and Courier LTD to send the package, he told Drummond, but the package never arrived.
For over two months, the shipping website showed that the package was delayed. Drummond had to continuously dish out money to clear the package in Yemen, Sudan, Portugal and Mexico, she told reporters.
She sent $52,000 to someone in Miami and thousands of dollars to a bank account in Charlotte, North Carolina.
At first glance, the website for Elegant Freight and Courier is full of glaring grammatical errors and incomplete sentences. Many of the website pages are blank including its landing and “Contact Us” page.
Drummond told ABC 7 News that the online chat worked and that’s where she complained about the delayed package. The local TV station said the company’s full address is also missing from the website and its phone number does not work.
“If I could get my hands on him, I would just choke the crap out of him,” Drummond said.
Drummond said when it was time for Logan to return to Michigan, he ghosted her. She now plans to file a complaint with the FBI. She reported Logan’s profile to BLK, but it’s unclear what the app has done to address the issue.
“There are some people in this world you can trust and like the one, I ran into online you can’t, and I just made a big mistake,” Drummond said.
The top three cybercrimes reported to the FBI in 2021 were phishing scams, non-payment/non-delivery scams and personal data breaches, according to the bureau. The FBI received 847,376 complaints of suspected internet crime in 2021 resulting in more than $6.9 billion in losses.
“Cybercriminals are constantly coming up with new ways to rip off unsuspecting consumers,” said Joseph R. Bonavolonta, special agent in charge of the FBI Boston Division in a recent bulletin.