WhatsApp conversation between MTR commuter and “African lover” goes viral 


29th November 2023 – (Hong Kong) A recent incident on the Hong Kong subway has sparked a heated online debate after a commuter secretly observed a woman engrossed in a WhatsApp conversation, suspected to involve a potential romance scam. While the act of surreptitious filming drew criticism from netizens, the screenshots captured during the incident have become the focal point of discussion.

Under the title “MTR Lady Suspected of Falling Victim to Romance Scam,” a netizen shared the incident on the popular forum, LIHKG. Although the netizen’s act of secretly filming was heavily condemned, the screenshots they captured have become a topic of intense scrutiny.

A netizen spotted a woman on the Hong Kong MTR engrossed in a WhatsApp conversation. The netizen discreetly glanced at the dialogue, suspecting an ongoing romance scam. From the conversation screenshots, the love interest’s phone number begins with “+234.”
“+234” is a phone code associated with Nigeria. In the conversation, the woman affectionately tells her “lover,” “…I love you, baby.” +26 Netizens criticize the invasion of privacy through secret filming.

The following are excerpts from the “flirty” conversation that caught netizens’ attention. Observant netizens noticed that the woman’s “love interest” hails from Africa, prompting an intriguing discussion on the delicate dynamics of scamming. One netizen described the dialogue as “something even primary school kids wouldn’t say,” suggesting that the exchange appeared to be generated by Google Translate.

The netizen who secretly filmed the conversation faced severe criticism for invading someone’s privacy, with accusations of potential privacy infringement. Netizens pointed out that phone numbers starting with the “+” symbol are often associated with scam calls, urging caution when receiving such calls.

Another netizen shared a similar encounter on a bus, where they overheard a woman engaging in a WhatsApp conversation with her “lover” at a stage where they were about to meet, which they suspected to be a potential romance scam. The netizen immediately warned the woman of the possibility.