He's hunting through chat rooms, dating sites and social networking sites searching for victims, looking to cash in on romance.
If you are over 40, recently divorced, a widow, elderly or disabled then all the better in his eyes.
If paid, the scammer may make up new fees that require payment before you can receive your reward.
They will keep asking for more money as long as you are willing to part with it.
The scammer may contact you by email, letter, text message or social networking message.
The stories may range from a businessman having an accident while in Nigeria for work to a helpless woman being stranded in Ghana; from asking for charity donations for Africa to a family member having a brain hemorrhage while in Africa.
Armed with their fake identity, the scammer proceeds to forge a bond with you.
They often communicate with you for weeks and months so you think you are getting to know them better while it is actually all part of their master plan.
You or someone you know may be dating this person online right now. No matter how good they sound, things aren't what they appear to be.
In reality you're talking to a criminal sitting in a cybercafé with a well-rehearsed script he's used many times before.