Many romance scammers set up phony profiles to lure their victims. To protect yourself, make sure to report any romance scams you come across online. Scammers use emotional hold to lure victims into a series of crimes. These crimes may include turning the victims into accomplices in other scams.
Reporting online dating scams
Reporting online dating scams is an important step to protect yourself from romance scammers. Often, scammers are able to trick people into providing personal information or sending money. Be suspicious of emails with a sense of urgency or multiple grammar mistakes, and always mark suspicious emails as spam. Online dating scams can cost victims thousands of dollars, so you should never send money without first being completely sure about the person’s identity.
If you believe you have been scammed, you should contact your bank or credit card provider to stop any money transfers. They may be able to trace your information and reverse the transaction. It may also be necessary to file a police report. Sadly, up to 10% of online dating profiles are fake. But if you know how to spot the fake profiles, you can avoid falling prey to scammers.
Scammers often use stolen photos and false information in their profiles. You can spot a scammer by comparing their profile with the person’s real identity. Often, they will ask for money for emergency expenses, such as car repairs or travel expenses. They may even ask for money in the form of gift cards.
The best way to protect yourself from romance scammers is to report them. Doing so can make you feel empowered and prevent future victims from being ripped off.
Avoiding romance scams
Many people have been victims of romance scams. In fact, the Federal Trade Commission received more than twenty thousand reports of romance scams in 2018 alone. Seniors, especially, are the most vulnerable victims. They are lonely and may be looking for companionship in an online environment. They may not be as tech-savvy as younger people and may not recognize warning signs of a scam until it is too late.
Most romance scammers are based outside the United States. In fact, the vast majority originate in West African countries, such as Ghana and Nigeria. While some are professional criminals, the majority are college students with very low incomes. In Nigeria, they are known as “Yahoo boys,” and many of them have become rich by using the internet to scam other people.
To avoid romance scams, make sure to check out your new love interest’s background. Some scammers isolate their victims from family and friends and may pressure them to make rash decisions. It is important to remember that scammers usually use convincing stories to gain the trust of their victims. Some may even ask for money. If you do send money to someone you are not familiar with, it will likely never be returned.
Another tell-tale sign of a romance scam is the lack of personal details. The scammer may be pretending to live in another country. Their excuses may include being deployed overseas, working for an international organization, or even on an oil rig. In addition, it is possible that they might not be able to contact you on the phone. They may also promise to visit you, but then abruptly cancel.
Because teens are particularly vulnerable to these scams, it’s important that you educate your children on how to spot scams. In addition to not sending money, teens should never give out personal information to a stranger. You can also educate them on the dangers of romance scams and how to protect themselves from them.