Anyone can become a victim of online dating scam. It does not depend on your income level or your IQ. To swallow a gudgeon of scammers you just have to be looking for love, that makes you more vulnerable than usual. And love is the tool scammers use to hack your bank account and strip you of your assets.
A romance scam or dating scam is an online fraud involving pretended romantic intentions towards a prey. A romance scammer play on emotional triggers to get you to provide money, gifts or personal details.
Online dating scammers usually target people older than themselves. In the case of a male scammer, they often target middle aged women in their 50’s to 60’s. They believe these people to be ideal targets as they are usually richer and more vulnerable.
Dating scammers hunt their victims on legitimate dating websites by creating fake profiles. Once you are in contact with a scammer, they will express strong emotions for you in a relatively short period of time and will suggest you move the relationship away from the website, to phone, email and/or instant messaging.
They will go to great lengths to gain your interest and trust, such as sharing personal information and even sending you gifts. Once they have won your trust they will ask you for gifts, money or your banking/credit card details.They will pretend to need these for a variety of reasons. For example, they may claim to be in the depths of despair due to financial hardship or an ill family member. Or they may ask you to pay travel expenses to visit you.
Anyway, regardless of a legend, you can you can lose a lot of money. The funds you send to scammers is almost always impossible to recover and in addition, you may feel long-lasting emotional betrayal at the hands of someone who you thought loved you and was trustworthy.
- If someone new or unfamiliar asks you to send them money via wire transfer or through the bank — or if, soon after the relationship develops, they suddenly have an emergency situation and ask for financial help.
- If someone asks to communicate outside of the dating site or email, or requests your address to send flowers or gifts (never give out your address or personal information).
- Be wary if someone refers to the relationship as “destiny” or “fate.” Or, if they claim they live in Canada or the U.S. but are currently travelling abroad.
- You meet someone on an internet dating website and their profile picture or photograph looks different to their description or like it’s from a magazine. Do a photo check. Save a copy of their profile picture. Use Google image search. Check the results. Are they already marked up as scammers or is the return illegitimate in some way? Report to the dating site giving the evidence, including any website links.
- After just a few contacts they profess strong feelings for you and suggest moving the conversation away from the website preferring email, instant messaging and/or phone instead.
- They continue to ask you for money, but never actually visit you.