Online Romance scams are sweeping the country. Why go out and mingle when you can just go to your computer? Unfortunately, romance scams are growing even faster. Internet dating websites provide the perfect forum for con-artists and manipulators.
This is how it happens:
- An attractive photo: Your new romantic interest sends you a picture that looks more like a model from a fashion magazine.
- Moving quickly: The romantic interest quickly wants to communicate with you through email or instant messaging on not on the online dating site.
- Love bombing: You will get bombarded with attention through constant communication whether its texting or email or on the phone.
- Promises promises: Promises to meet in person that never take place. There’s always an excuse.
- Financial problem: Often, the next step is a they need money for some good reason and only you can help.
How can you avoid this?
- Take it slowly: Ask your romantic interest a lot of questions, and watch for inconsistencies.
- Watch out for love bombing. Love bombing is when its too much too fast. Overly complimenting emails. Real relationships evolve slowly.
- Do not overshare: Revealing too much personal information to a con-artist will only be used against you later. Never share intimate photos. Don’t expose yourself to identity theft.
- Search on Google: search for their name, their photo or even the messages you are being sent on your computer browser. It may lead you to good information on whether this may be a scam.
- Never give them money of any kind: you will never get it back. People who are really interested in you will never ask you for money.
- Scammers are online fishing and you are the bate: It does not matter that you initiated contact.
- No contact: Once you form suspicions or even completely expose it for a scam, stop communicating immediately. Don’t give them an opportunity to talk you out of it. Manipulators excel at this.
- Notify the dating App: They need to know what is happening so they can prevent future scams.
Finally, scammers are everywhere and not just online. Just remember the red flags: Too good to be true, moving fast, love bombing, sharing intimacy quickly, broken promises, asking for money. Remember, moving quickly is not a sign of love. Empower yourself. Here are some websites to learn more: https://www.huffpost.com/entry/tips-to-protect-against-online-romance-scams_n_594a90f9e4b01cdedeff861c; https://www.supereasy.com/how-to-recognize-online-dating-scams/; https://www.seniorsafetyreviews.com/how-to-protect-yourself-from-online-dating-scams/