Over the past few days the media has been dominated by reports of the sharp increase in internet dating scam victims and the financial and emotional cost it brings.This article looks at how to spot the signs of an internet dating scam, how to protect yourself from internet dating scams and most importantly, how to avoid internet dating scams.With recent government figures saying that some 40,000 people have been victims of online dating scams, Insight Investigations can confirm that this is now becoming a major problem as our increasing client list proves.Insight have taken on many such cases and, on occasions, have been able to reunite the client with some or all of their money.Action Fraud’s advice is that people should never agree to send money to someone they’ve met on a dating site or app, or share financial details with them.They also suggest a raft of other self-protection measures, such as keeping one’s personal information secret, and communicating only through the dating platform—scammers will often try to move conversations quickly to other messaging services, email, or phone calls.
Over the last two years there was also a 134 per cent increase in Londoners falling for regular payment fraud – which is where scammers pretend to be a company the victim may pay regularly like an energy or mobile phone company.
By pulling data from these profiles, they have created the average male and female scammer profiles - including everything from their age to their hair, job, eye colour and posture.
They found the most common female profile, set up for romance scamming purposes, is a brunette in her twenties (29 was the most common age) with blue eyes.
They may have arranged to visit you, but need money to pay for the flight or visa.
They may tell you everything has been booked but their ticket has been stolen, and you need to send money quickly to get them on the next flight.