Here are some warning signs that an online love interest might be a fake.They ask you to: Did you know you can do an image search of your love interest’s photo in your favorite search engine?Not everyone on Internet dating sites is looking for love; some may be hoping to scam their next potential victim. Phil says there are typical ways in which online dating con artists work.
In mid December the Department of Justice announced that seven men—six from Nigeria and one from South Africa—pled guilty to conning tens of millions of dollars from Americans via online dating sites.
According to the Consumer Reports 2016 Online Dating Survey of more than 114,000 subscribers, among the respondents who were considering online dating but were hesitant, 46 percent said they were concerned about being scammed. “Typically the scammer builds trust by writing long letters over weeks or months and crafting a whole persona for their victims,” says Unit Chief David Farquhar from the Financial Crimes Section of the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) who specializes in cyber-related crimes.
“That big investment gives victims a false sense that the relationship must be real.” Eventually a pitch for money comes.
While the case was remarkable for its magnitude, when it comes to so-called “romance scams,” it still represents just the tip of the iceberg.
According to the FBI, romance scams and similar confidence scams cost consumers more money than any other kind of Internet fraud.