The online dating scene has become commonplace for singles looking for romance. However, it is easy for scammers to hide behind screens and trick unsuspecting victims into falling for the. Better Business Bureau of Central New England has tips to help singles find love instead of headaches when online dating.
While the internet and social media has made dating and find other singles easer. It has also made it easier for scammers to lure victims and trick them into thinking their rouse is a legitimate romance. “Catphishing has become a common term in the dating scene, it is when a scammer pretends to be someone they are not to trick their victims into falling for them,” said Nancy B. Cahalen, President and CEO of the Better Business Bureau of Central New England. “With convincing back-stories and a multitude of excuses, catphishers string their victims along and after persuade them to send money or complete other favors, leaving the victim at a loss.” Better Business Bureau of Central New England is warning singles to know the warning signs of “catfishing,” or romance scams. Be wary of anyone who:
Quickly asks to talk or chat on an outside email or messaging service. Often times, this allows fraudsters to carry out scams without the dating site having a record of the encounter. Remember that scammers play on emotion… and romance is certainly a strong emotion. Anytime people are vulnerable, fraudsters find opportunity.
Claims to be from this country but is currently traveling, living or working abroad. Scammers come up with all kinds of excuses why they can’t meet in person just yet. Be cautious of online daters who claim to be called away suddenly, or to be in the military and stationed overseas.
Asks you for money or credit card information. In some cases the scammer will claim an emergency like a sick relative or stolen wallet, and will ask you to wire money. The first wire transfer is small but the requests keep coming and growing. Or they may ask for airfare to come for a visit. The payback promises are empty; the money’s gone, and so is your match.
Sends you emails containing questionable links to third-party websites. Third-party links can contain malware that’s designed to steal personal information off your computer. Scammers may use third party links that look credible, but in reality, they only link to viruses that can lead to identity theft.
For more on romance scams: http://www.bbb.org/romancescam