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Scammers take advantage of people looking for romantic partners, often via dating websites, apps or social media by pretending to be prospective companions.


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The embrace of online dating services, such as dating apps or virtual places to meet people, is a phenomenon that has occurred worldwide.

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Fake profiles and scams rampant on dating websites

A failed relationship could give you a broken heart, but it shouldn't leave you out of pocket. Scammers are drawn to dating sites because they know that the people on there are looking to make a personal connection, and they can use this to their advantage.

The catfishing from the original documentary started on Facebookbut you can also be catfished on dating apps like Tinder, in chatrooms or even through fake video chats on Skype. If you come across a fake profile you should report it to the dating site or social network wherever possible. Where catfishing can become illegal is if the scammer uses the fake profile to trick you into sending them money.

This is fraud, and it is against the law. A common tactic of dating scammers is to ask you to talk ontext or Whatsapp, in case the dating site or app gets wise to their scam.

When love becomes a nightmare: online dating scams

Scam victims frequently report being asked to send money internationally to pay for an alleged visa, only never to hear from them again. Or do they make it clear that they have a great job, are very wealthy or charitable?

These are common tactics of dating scammers. It sounds cynical, but scammers will often tell you that they are recently bereaved or that they or someone they are close to is seriously ill to make you feel sorry for them. If you right click on their picture on Chrome it should come up with the option to search Google for this image, or copy the photo and paste it into Google Images to see whether the picture is being used elsewhere online.

If you think you might have shared your bank or credit card details with a scammer then let your bank or credit card company know as soon as possible. They might be able to block your card or hold any unusual transactions before the scammer can access your money.

They could catch the scammer and stop somebody else falling victim to them later down the line. Check out our full commenting guidelines. By clicking on 'Post Comment', you're agreeing to our Commenting Policy.

Tags Scams. How to spot and avoid online dating scams A failed relationship could give you a broken heart, but it shouldn't leave you out of pocket. What is catfishing on the internet?

Is there a law against catfishing online? Asking you to move your chat off the dating site A common tactic of dating scammers is to ask you to talk ontext or Whatsapp, in case the dating site or app gets wise to their scam.

How to spot and avoid online dating scams

Tell your bank If you think you might have shared your bank or credit card details with a scammer then let your bank or credit card company know as soon as possible. How to report a scam or fraud.

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