Online Dating Scams: Top 4 Signs of a Romance Scammer [Infographic]

In the lead-up to and wind-down from Valentine’s Day, romance — no matter how much we love or hate it — is pretty much everywhere. But something that’s less discussed surrounding this holiday is heartbreak, including from romance scammers who prey on people’s vulnerable hearts online.

Signs of a Romance Scammer

This ever-growing cybersecurity threat has become an all-too-real reality, especially as we continue to work, socialize, and find love online.

In case you’re unfamiliar, romance scammers — also considered online dating scammers — are cybercriminals who fool an online love interest into believing they’re embarking on a long-lasting relationship. In fact, they’re using a false name and even false social media profiles to gain a victim’s trust and, ideally, their money.

Once the romance scammer gets what they want, they oftentimes are never heard from again, abandoning their victim and sometimes leaving them penniless. As sad as it is, the statistics indicate just this.

According to the FTC, in 2020, people have reported having lost nearly $117 million to online dating scams that began on social media. Also according to the commission, the median individual loss to online dating scams is $2,600, and the commission reports that consumers lost nearly $201 million in 2019 alone to romance scams.

Online Dating Scams: Top 4 Signs of a Romance Scammer

These figures considered, and it’s worth recognizing some of the red flags of a romance scammer.

1. They love hard and fast

The first sign of a romance scam is an online love interest professing their love quickly.

2. They’re unreachable

If someone you meet online has an unbelievable backstory that places them out of the country, this could be a sign they don’t want to be found.

3. They insist you communicate off of a dating site

Another sign of a romance scam is when an online lover insists you take your relationship away from a dating site you met on. (They don’t want your communications tracked).

4. They need money

Finally, the most sure-fire sign of a romance scammer is that they ask you for money. Never give someone you haven’t met a penny.

These warning signs might not necessarily come in this order, but if you know what to look for, it can help you outsmart a romance scammer.

And in the unfortunate event that you or a friend become a victim of an online dating scam, it’s worth underscoring that you should report it immediately, beginning with any place you left a digital footprint during your relationship, including your bank, if you sent money, and a dating site, if you met on one.

In addition, file a police report, as well as complaints to the FTC and FBI to ensure scammers don’t go breaking others’ hearts—and banks.

Finally, consider more facts and figures about romance scams in 2021 and also tips to prevent yourself from being scammed, courtesy of Norton.

Online Dating Scams Infographic

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TechGlobeX: Online Dating Scams: Top 4 Signs of a Romance Scammer [Infographic]
Online Dating Scams: Top 4 Signs of a Romance Scammer [Infographic]
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