Dating Scam

 

A dating scam is predominantly found on the internet where you are looking to meet people and possibly develop a relationship.

The internet has become a very popular way to meet people due to the cost effectiveness of being able to reach so many people from around the country or around the world.

Sadly however, there is a dark side to online dating. If you place a personal advertisement on the internet you are a potential victim for professional con artists and internet predators who entice unsuspecting hearts into a web of deception.

The internet offers you the opportunity to be anonymous when looking to meet people, however that also offers online predators the opportunity to be a wolf in sheep's clothing! They can use any photo they wish in their profile, and use all the appropriate words to come across as a wonderful catch.

Their goal is your money, but by the time they get that, they have your heart also, so the loss is not just financial - it is usually a heartbreak as well!

How Does a Dating Scam Work?

  • A person registers on an online dating site and then creates a profile and may include a photo
  • A scammer contacts the person and expresses an interest in getting to know them better
  • The victim and scammer correspond and usually the scammer encourages the victim to move off the dating site contact system and continue via email so that the dating site can't monitor the scammer
  • The scammer builds up trust with the victim and photos are exchanged. The scammer has stolen photos from other internet sites so the photos the victims sees are not that of the scammer
  • Once the relationship has been progressing a few weeks [usually 2-6 weeks] the scammer will 'fall in love' with the victim
  • Then the scammer will ask for money for a variety of reasons: Passport, visa, air tickets and travel insurance Emergency medical expenses for her or her family due to illness or accidents Internet cafe expenses, cell phone
  • If the victim sends money, the scammer will continue to invent reasons for more money until the victim has no more money, or realizes what is going on and stops communicating
  • The scammer deletes the email address used with the victim and continues with their other victims they are stringing along at the same time
  • A variation to the internet dating scams is when the scammer sets up a profile and waits for the victims to contact them. They usually use a photo of a very attractive young woman as its guaranteed to get hundreds of replies from men!
  • The scammers also stalk chat rooms and begin a conversation there.

What to do for a Dating Scam

dating scam
  • Once the scammer has asked for money, stop further communications with them
  • Report them to the dating site
  • No matter how trustworthy they may seem, DO NOT SEND THEM MONEY
  • If you have sent them money, your chances of getting it back are really zero, but you should report it to the Police, Western Union [if it was used] or Moneygram [if it was used]
  • If you are from the US, you can also visit the Internet Fraud Complaint Center hosted by the FBI at http://www.ic3.gov in order to file a complaint.
  • See advice for the most popular dating scam

Advice for a Dating Scam

  • Enjoy the relationship, but DON'T SEND THEM MONEY OR CREDIT CARD OR BANK DETAILS!!! and then all you will lose is your heart!
  • If you are a US citizen, the Fraud Prevention Unit can verify the authenticity of any U.S. visa via e-mail at FPMM@state.gov. In addition, complete and authoritative information on applying for a U.S. visa is available on the Department of State’s webpage on Visa Information for Temporary Visitors.



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