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Experts say online daters are always wise to be skeptical regarding what someone they've met online, and not in the flesh, tells them.Most dating websites—even ones that cost money—don't vet the people who sign up.Run a search: Copy the images your online correspondent has posted to his or her profile, then run them through a reverse-image search engine, such as Tin Eye or Google Images.If they come up associated to a person with another name or who lives in a different city, you have good reason to suspect they were stolen from someone else’s profile.It wasn’t until the relationship came to an end that Adie found out her boyfriend was in fact a transsexual and had been born Christine Wilson. Originally from Surrey, she has studied Communication and Media at Bournemouth University and The University of Central Florida.My Online Nightmare continues next Wednesday 19th April, and episode two will look at “stories of romances that started online but ended in deception, fraud and bigamy”. She enjoys socialising with friends, exploring new places and can often be found with her nose in a book.According to the FBI, romance scams and similar confidence scams cost consumers more money than any other kind of Internet fraud.
To recognize and avoid romance scams, follow these tips.In mid December the Department of Justice announced that seven men—six from Nigeria and one from South Africa—pled guilty to conning tens of millions of dollars from Americans via online dating sites.While the case was remarkable for its magnitude, when it comes to so-called “romance scams,” it still represents just the tip of the iceberg.(It is estimated that only 15 percent of fraud victims report their losses to law enforcement, so the real numbers are probably higher.) As one result, fear of a horrible first date is just one of the things a would-be online dater has to worry about. “Most people think the victims are middle-aged women who can't get a date, but I have worked with men and women of all ages—doctors and lawyers, CEOs of companies, people from the entertainment industry—who you’d never think in a million years would fall for these scams but do,” says Barb Sluppick, who runs romancescams.org, a watchdog site and online support group.
According to the Consumer Reports 2016 Online Dating Survey of more than 114,000 subscribers, among the respondents who were considering online dating but were hesitant, 46 percent said they were concerned about being scammed. “Typically the scammer builds trust by writing long letters over weeks or months and crafting a whole persona for their victims,” says Unit Chief David Farquhar from the Financial Crimes Section of the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) who specializes in cyber-related crimes.
Almost all promise to take care of their new love interest.