Russia Has Weaponized Romance Scams To Gather Intelligence Against Ukraine – Honey Pot Scams!
We have just heard from a Ukraine romance scamScam A Scam is a confidence trick - a crime - is an attempt to defraud a person or group after first gaining their trust through deception. Scams or confidence tricks exploit victims using their credulity, naïveté, compassion, vanity, irresponsibility, or greed and exploiting that. Researchers have defined confidence tricks as "a distinctive species of fraudulent conduct ... intending to further voluntary exchanges that are not mutually beneficial", as they "benefit con operators ('con men' - criminals) at the expense of their victims (the 'marks')". A scam is a crime even if no money was lost. victim who discovered that not only was she involved in a romance or honey pot scam, but that it was a Russian Honey Pot Scam!
Did You Know?
Did you know that Russian scammers are using Romance Scams to convert Ukraine citizens into unknowing spies through these honey pot sccams?
They are pretending to be people (impersonating) from all around the world – Asians, Americans, Europeans, and more. They engage in all the standard romance scam techniques – that includes: groomingGrooming Grooming is a form of setting up a victim for a scam or other crime by befriending and establishing an emotional connection with the victim, and sometimes the family, to lower the victim's inhibitions with the objective of the scam or criminal activity. Grooming includes the development of a trust relationship between the criminal and the victim, getting the victims to the point where they can be more completely manipulated. , manipulation, and control. This is so that Ukrainian women and men are led into relationships for the purpose of obtaining information (intelligence) that the Russian military can use.
The victim we spoke with lives in Eastern Ukraine, and the honey pot scammerScammer A Scammer or Fraudster is someone that engages in deception to obtain money or achieve another objective. They are criminals that attempt to deceive a victim into sending more or performing some other activity that benefits the scammer. was constantly asking about her life there, military movements, and family member deployments. Even small bits of information about daily life can confirm information that can be useful to an enemy.
As always, all victims need to exercise extreme care, especially if they are in places of conflict or in jobs where security is critical. The techniques of romance scams are nothing new – though these forms of honey pot scams are someone unexpected – but these are all old-school Soviet-era spycraft! Romance has always been used to turn loyalists into moles, mules, and embedded spies.
IF YOU LIVE IN UKRAINE AVOID ALL ONLINE RELATIONSHIPS WITH STRANGERS!
Honey Pot Scams
In espionage terminology, a honey pot scam or honeypot or honey trap are terms for an operational practice involving the use of a covert agent (usually female), to create a sexual or romantic relationship to compromise a (usually male) target.
The operator may be a government spy service or organized crime syndicate and the target, or victim, can unwittingly provide intelligence or perform other services for the operator. These situations are a very common trope in spy fiction and media portrayals of female espionage. Variations include same-sex relationships and complications may involve the covert agent falling in love with the target.
In deciding whether to recruit a prospect, there needs to be a process to make sure that the person is not actively working for the adversary’s counterintelligence, is under surveillance by them, or presents other risks that may not make recruitment wise. The assessment process applies both to targeted recruits, but additional assessment needs to apply to the walk-in, who is most likely to be someone sent by a counterintelligence service.
With the advent of the Internet and social media, recruiting is a much simpler process since operators only need to look at the social media presence of a target to know if they are generally suitable for recruitment or exploitation. Most people overexpose their information on social media, especially their locations, and this can help operatives to decide if they might be of value!
The History of the Honey Trap or Honey Pot Scam Approach
The trade name for this type of spying is the “honey trap.” And it turns out that both men and women are equally adept at setting one — and equally vulnerable to tumbling in. Spies use sex, intelligence, and the thrill of a secret life as bait. Cleverness, training, character, and patriotism are often no defense against a well-set honey trap. And as in normal life, no planning can take into account that a romance begun in deceit might actually turn into a genuine, passionate affair. In fact, when an East German honey trap was exposed in 1997, one of the women involved refused to believe she had been deceived, even when presented with the evidence. “No, that’s not true,” she insisted. “He really loved me.”
Those who aim to perfect the art of the honey trap in the future, as well as those who seek to insulate themselves, would do well to learn from honey trap history. Of course, there are far too many stories — too many dramas, too many rumpled bedsheets, rattled spouses, purloined letters, and ruined lives — to do that history justice here. Yet one could begin with five famous stories and the lessons they offer for honey-trappers, and honey-trappees (honey pot scam victims), everywhere.
The art of seducing was employed centuries ago, but the term “honeypot” or “honey pot” became popular during the Cold War. It described the Soviet activities which were targeting the West and especially the United States. The KGB, the Soviet Security Agency, used to identify women with the term “swallow”, and men with “raven”. The term “kompromat” stood for “compromising material”.
During the Civil War, in Tennessee, two sisters, Ginnie and Lottie Moon, also called “the Moon Sister Spies”, used their seduction skills to gain information from Union soldiers and spy for the Confederates. They were so talented and successful that at one point they were engaged to 38 soldiers between them.
In 2009, the MI5 circulated a 14-page document named “The Threat from Chinese Espionage” to British businesses and banks. It warned these businesses that the Chinese intelligence was trying to use a “honey trap”. The Chinese wanted to put pressure on individuals and convince them to cooperate with them.
In the past ten years, China tried to use honey pot scams in Western countries in order to steal secrets. Chinese agents, active in the UK, offer Western agents, scientists, engineers, and businessmen money and sex to gain valuable information. These agents often use social media, such as Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn, to connect with their targets and to lure them into their traps. An example of a Chinese honey pot scam is Fang Fang, or Christine Fang. She lived in the US from 2011 to 2015. In those years, she had relationships with Democratic politicians and two US mayors. In that period, she was able to observe the social networks, preferences, and habits of government officials. Fang Fang took part in Eric Swalwell’s re-election campaign and helped one intern to be part of Swalwell’s office. However, in 2015, the FBIFBI FBI - Federal Bureau of Investigation The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) is the domestic intelligence and security service of the United States and its principal federal law enforcement agency. Operating under the jurisdiction of the United States Department of Justice, the FBI is also a member of the U.S. Intelligence Community and reports to both the Attorney General and the Director of National Intelligence. A leading U.S. counter-terrorism, counterintelligence, and criminal investigative organization, the FBI has jurisdiction over violations of more than 200 categories of federal crimes, including financial fraud. was investigating Fang and gave Swalwell a defensive briefing. The FBI alerted him on Fang’s activities and behaviorBehavior Behavior / Behavioral Actions Otherwise known as habits, behavior or behavioral actions are strategies to help prevent online exploitation that target behavior, such as social engineering of victims. Changing your behavior is the ONLY effective means to reduce or prevent scams.. Swalwell cut off the ties with Fang and she immediately left the country.
It Is Not Surprising
It is not surprising that the Russians are engaged in these honey pot scams. It is only surprising that this is the first we have been hearing of them!
What is equally surprising is that we are not hearing of more use of this technique by other scammers to exploit victims through honey pot scams, blackmail and other means. Although, in a manner of speaking a Sextortion scam is also a honey pot scam!
Do You Need Support?
Get It Now!
SCARS provides the leading Support & Recovery program for relationship scamRelationship Scam A Relationship Scam is a one-to-one criminal act that involves a trust relationship and uses deception & manipulation to get a victim to give to the criminal something of value, such as money! Click here to learn more: What Is A Relationship Scam? victims – completely FREE!
Our managed peer supportPeer support Peer support occurs when people provide knowledge, experience, emotional, social or practical help to each other. It commonly refers to an initiative consisting of trained supporters and can take a number of forms such as peer mentoring, reflective listening (reflecting content and/or feelings), or in a support group. Peer support is also used to refer to initiatives where colleagues, members of self-help organizations and others meet, in person or online, to give each other connection and support on a reciprocal basis. Peer support is distinct from other forms of social support in that the source of support is a peer, a person who is similar in fundamental ways to the recipient of the support; their relationship is one of equality. A peer is in a position to offer support by virtue of relevant experience: he or she has "been there, done that" and can relate to others who are now in a similar situation. Trained peer support workers such as SCARS Volunteers receive special training and may be required to obtain Continuing Education Units, similar to clinical staff. Some other trained peer support workers may also be law-enforcement personnel and firefighters as well as emergency medical responders. groups allow victims to talk to other survivorsSurvivor A Scam Survivor is a victim who has been able to fully accept the reality of their situation. That they were the victim of a crime and are not to blame. They are working on their emotional recovery and reduction of any trauma either on their own, through a qualified support organization, or through counseling or therapy. And has done their duty and reported the crime to their local police, national police, and on Anyscam.com and recover in the most experienced environment possible, for as long as they need. Recovery takes as long as it takes – we put no limits on our support!
SCARS is the most trusted support & education provider in the world. Our team is certified in trauma-informedTrauma-Informed Trauma-informed care shifts the focus from “What’s wrong with you?” to “What happened to you?” A trauma-informed approach to care acknowledges that health care needs to have a complete picture of a patient’s life situation — past and present — in order to provide effective care services with a healing orientation. Adopting trauma-informed practices can potentially improve patient engagement, treatment adherence, and health outcomes. care, grief counselingCounseling Counseling is the professional guidance of the individual by utilizing psychological methods especially in collecting case history data, using various techniques of the personal interview, and testing interests and aptitudes. A mental health counselor (MHC), or counselor, is a person who works with individuals and groups to promote optimum mental and emotional health. Such persons may help individuals deal with issues associated with addiction and substance abuse; family, parenting, and marital problems; stress management; self-esteem; and aging. They may also work with "Social Workers", "Psychiatrists", and "Psychologists". SCARS does not provide mental health counseling., and so much more!
To apply to join our groups visit support.AgainstScams.org
We also offer separate support groupsSupport Groups In a support group, members provide each other with various types of help, usually nonprofessional and nonmaterial, for a particular shared, usually burdensome, characteristic, such as romance scams. Members with the same issues can come together for sharing coping strategies, to feel more empowered and for a sense of community. The help may take the form of providing and evaluating relevant information, relating personal experiences, listening to and accepting others' experiences, providing sympathetic understanding and establishing social networks. A support group may also work to inform the public or engage in advocacy. They can be supervised or not. SCARS support groups are moderated by the SCARS Team and or volunteers. for family & friends too.
SCARS STAR™ Member
SCARS offers memberships in our STAR program, which includes many benefits for a very low annual membership fee!
SCARS STAR Membership benefits include:
- FREE Counseling or Therapy Benefit from our partner BetterHelp.com
- Exclusive members-only content & publications
- Discounts on SCARS Self-Help Books Save
- And more!
To learn more about the SCARS STAR Membership visit membership.AgainstScams.org
To become a SCARS STAR Member right now visit join.AgainstScams.org
To Learn More Also Look At Our Article Catalogs
Essential Tools For Every Scam SurvivorSurvivor A Scam Survivor is a victim who has been able to fully accept the reality of their situation. That they were the victim of a crime and are not to blame. They are working on their emotional recovery and reduction of any trauma either on their own, through a qualified support organization, or through counseling or therapy. And has done their duty and reported the crime to their local police, national police, and on Anyscam.com From SCARS Publishing
Each is based on our SCARS Team’s 32 plus years of experience.
SCARS Website Visitors get an Extra 10% Discount
Use Discount Code “romanacescamsnow” at Checkout
SCARS GREEN BOOK
Self-Help Self-Paced Recovery Program Guide
LEARN HOW TO RECOVER ON YOUR OWN
This program is designed to help scam victims struggling to recover on their own and for those who want to understand the overall process. You can be using other resources, such as traumaTrauma Emotional and psychological trauma is the result of extraordinarily stressful events that shatter your sense of security, making you feel helpless in a dangerous world. Psychological trauma can leave you struggling with upsetting emotions, memories, and anxiety that won’t go away. It can also leave you feeling numb, disconnected, and unable to trust other people. Traumatic experiences often involve a threat to life or safety or other emotional shocks, but any situation that leaves you feeling overwhelmed and isolated can result in trauma, even if it doesn’t involve physical harm. It’s not the objective circumstances that determine whether an event is traumatic, but your subjective emotional experience of the event. The more frightened and helpless you feel, the more likely you are to be traumatized. Trauma requires treatment, either through counseling or therapy or through trauma-oriented support programs, such as those offered by SCARS. counseling or therapy, qualified support groups, or completely independent – on your own!
The SCARS Steps program is a complete program and is provided for the purpose of helping scam victims to overcome this experience. Throughout this SCARS Steps Program, we speak about issues and challenges that a victim may have and help guide them through their recovery. But each person is different and it is important to understand your own reasons for being vulnerable to being scammed.
After the trauma of being scammed, you need to take steps to recover and move on. This may be an alternative to counseling in the short term, but we still encourage you to seek out professional help & support. Throughout this SCARS Steps Program, we speak about issues, challenges, defects, or problems that a victim may have in a generalized way.
The SCARS GREEN BOOK will help you recover from your scam offline and it will always be there when you need it!
SCARS SLATE BOOK – Let Us Explain What Happened!
A Guide For Families & Friends Of Scam Victims
HOW TO HELP ROMANCE SCAM VICTIMS FOR FAMILIES & FRIENDS OF SCAM VICTIMS
This SCARS Publishing book represents a complete guide to help the families and friends understand how these scams work and how to help the victim.
The SCARS Slate Book should be purchased by family and friends to better understand what happened to the victim and the traumatic impact on them. But it can also be shared by the victim so that they do not have to explain to family and friends about the scam. This publication is to help others to help Scam Victims to make it through this traumatic experience and recover.
Each person is different and it is important to understand how relationship scamsRelationship Scam A Relationship Scam is a one-to-one criminal act that involves a trust relationship and uses deception & manipulation to get a victim to give to the criminal something of value, such as money! Click here to learn more: What Is A Relationship Scam? work and why people are vulnerable; to being scammed, how they were lured in, then groomed and manipulated. This understanding is essential in helping them through the process of ending the scam and then on to recovery. The SCARS Slate Book will provide the information necessary to help support a victim through this process.
SCARS RED BOOK
Your Personal Scam Evidence & Crime Record Organizer
ORGANIZE YOUR INFORMATION TO MAKE THE REPORTING PROCESS SIMPLE!
Helps you get and stay organized. This publication is to help Scam Victims organize their crime information. Complete this information before reporting to the police then bring this book with you
Before or after reporting to the police the RED BOOK gives you a dedicated tool to record all the essential facts of this crime. The Victim, the Scammers, the Money, and your Police interactions. Everything that really matters can be easily recorded for your immediate use and for the future!
As we have seen, money recovery/repayment programs can become available years after the scam ends and you need to keep all the details of this crime in case it is needed. We have also seen scammers being extradited to the U.S. and other countries, this will help in the event you testify or give statements, Additionally, this helps you have your information ready to qualify for victims’ benefits, compensation, or aid.
The Official SCARS RED BOOK is your way of recording all the important facts of this crime so that you do not lose essential information, Complete the RED BOOK then put it away with the confidence that you will have it if or when it is needed.
100% of all profit goes to help SCARS help more scam victims worldwide.
Your generous purchase allows us to maintain our scam avoidance, support, and recovery services. Please help SCARS and stand proud.
PLEASE SHARE OUR ARTICLES WITH YOUR FRIENDS & FAMILY
HELP OTHERS STAY SAFE ONLINE – YOUR KNOWLEDGE CAN MAKE THE DIFFERENCE!
THE NEXT VICTIM MIGHT BE YOUR OWN FAMILY MEMBER OR BEST FRIEND!
By the Society of Citizens Against Relationship ScamsSCARS SCARS - Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc. A government registered crime victims' assistance & crime prevention nonprofit organization based in Miami, Florida, U.S.A. SCARS supports the victims of scams worldwide and through its partners in more than 60 countries around the world. Incorporated in 2015, its team has 30 years of continuous experience educating and supporting scam victims. Visit www.AgainstScams.org to learn more about SCARS. Inc.
A Worldwide Crime Victims Assistance & Crime Prevention Nonprofit Organization Headquartered In Miami Florida USA & Monterrey NL Mexico, with Partners In More Than 60 Countries
To Learn More, Volunteer, or Donate Visit: www.AgainstScams.org
To see Scammer Photos visit www.ScammerPhotos.com
Contact Us: Contact@AgainstScams.org
Leave A Comment