The number of victims of online dating scammers is growing, and the total amount of cash losses each year is estimated in millions of dollars. Cheating schemes are also being improved, and now, scammers are increasingly implementing long-term scripts instead of simply sending phishing emails.
If you are a regular visitor to online dating services, and your interlocutor has met one or more of the below-provided criteria, you should beware at least and reduce or stop communication at all.
Target Audience for Online Dating Scammers
Typically, the target audience is people belonging to different demographic groups and on almost all the platforms, although there are some exceptions. Thus, you will not run into romancecompass scams since the service has a great security system. However, nobody is immune to this type of scam on other dating platforms. Well, besides, there is a tendency that retirees are catfished more often, as well as those who are prone to increased susceptibility or appear rarely in public. Especially a lot of scammers are present on the services that are popular all over the world. Moreover, the number of potential victims is growing with the popularity of dating applications, and many stages of the process of luring victims are automated with the help of bots.
1. Specific profile. When studying the profile of your interlocutor, there are several signs that you should pay special attention to.
- There are very few photos, or there are pics with a glamorous or model appearance.
- A person is looking for a partner in your area, but they are living in another country.
- Many scammers claim to be on a business trip to another country.
When using applications, scammers and bots add very little information to the profile and only one or two photos. Also, the profile, as a rule, is not linked to Instagram and other accounts on social networks.
2. Attempts to continue communication on some other sites. An online dating scammer will quickly offer to continue your communication outside the site where you’ve met.
Often, scammers prefer to communicate via text messages, for example, Skype or Facebook. However, it can also be an instant messenger like WhatsApp. You should be especially careful with people you are not familiar with in real life, who want to communicate on another platform.
3. A prompt manifestation of feelings
Scammers tend to move quickly to emotional conversations. After a short period, they may confess love or deep affection. This trick is a part of the emotional manipulation that is often used by cybercriminals when dating on the Internet. That is why sensitive people with a secluded lifestyle are especially desirable targets since they crave new connections. You should pay attention to interlocutors who begin to show their feelings at the very beginning of communication if you have not met in real life yet.
4. Different circumstances hampering the meeting
The most common strategy is when a scammer wants to meet with you, but there are always unforeseen reasons that prevent you from the meeting.
Since the fraudster is not the person for whom they claim to be, it’s obvious that they do not want to meet in person at all. It is for this reason that many dating scammers say that they are working in another country or are on a business trip because it’s the most effective excuse in this case. Many male scammers upload profile photos in which they wear military uniforms.
The reasons hampering the meeting may be an occasion to ask for money from you first, for example, to buy a ticket. Sometimes, scammers claim to be detained at the border and need money to get free.