How to Avoid Dating and Romance Scams?
Romance scams might sound made up, but they exist. Frauds deceive the victims into a false relationship to steal their identity or money. These scams are usually perpetrated by criminals that create fake profiles to deceive people to this extent. Dating websites and apps are the hunting grounds for these fraudsters. We are here today to tackle Romance scams. We'll help you identify the signs that you are being scammed, and also provide you with ways to avoid becoming a part of these scams.
What are the Signs Of Romance Scams?
These fraudsters are very skilled in making stories. They lure victims into fake relationships. These people, however, are too good to be true and can give us signs that they are not genuine. We have shared some of the signs below.
Reverse Image Search: When you do a reverse search on their profile picture, you'll discover that it belongs to someone else.
Personal Questions: They'll want to know a lot of personal things about you. They'll ask a lot of questions. At the same time, they'll deny you the answers you seek. They'll never give you details about themselves. Or they might share made-up details. One way to identify them easily is to match their education to their grammar.
Move the conversations to other platforms: They are quite adamant about moving away from that platform you met on. They'll suggest that you should communicate via text messages, phone calls, or instant messaging.
Try to establish a bond: Even though you have just met the person, they'll claim that you are different, unique, or special. They'll make you believe that you have formed a bond and that you have this special connection.
Yet to meet them in person: When you try to set a meeting, or even when the promise to meet you, they'll always make up excuses. Most of the excuses might involve financial issues.
How to Avoid Falling Prey To Romance Scams
Romance scams usually originate via dating apps and websites. It's one of the ways to seek out potential romantic interests but also opens doors for such scammers. Here are a few ways you can avoid falling prey to romance scams.
Say no to sharing of personal information
Personal details shouldn't be shared online with anyone. Many fraudsters lie in wait for such information. A fraud who executes these romance scams would use this information to swindle money. Even if you have met the person before, it can be hard to verify the scammer is not impersonating someone you know to get personal information. Avoid using personal details in your username. Don't pair your location with your name. Also, avoid sharing any contact information. Report the person on the dating website.
These fraudsters will try to feed emotional stories to you. And beg you to help them online. Don't send any money to people you have never met. Meet the person, find out if they are genuine, and only then help them out. Avoid sending money to people you rarely meet. If you know the person contact them and set up a meeting to validate their online story.
Use authentic Dating websites and Apps
These fraudsters mostly troll vulnerable dating websites and apps that have no security measures in place. Make sure the dating website and app you are using are authentic. And don't move on to other communication methods unless you are sure they aren't scammers. The reason they are so adamant about taking the conversation to other media is that they don't want these websites to carry the proof of their deceit. On other media, they have more freedom to cover up their tracks.
The use of webcam has brought people closer but it also has negative aspects. These fraudsters can use your video footage for their advantage. So, be careful with the webcam. Use them over a secure network and only with people that you are confident about.
Don't Ignore your Instincts
Your instincts lead you in the right direction. So, listen to the warning bells in your mind. Investigate these people.