The statistics of online dating fraud
Avoid any arrangement with a stranger that asks for up-front payment via money order, wire transfer, international funds transfer, pre-loaded card or electronic currency, like Bitcoin. If someone is keen to take their contact off the dating site very quickly, this could be a sign that they have something to hide. They often claim to be from Australia or another western country, but travelling or working overseas. Wait until you feel comfortable with an individual before telling them things like your phone number, place of work or address. Do not post personal information, such as phone numbers, on dating sites. They start asking you to send them money using a number of different scenarios such as:
Be wary of requests for money. Be very careful about how much personal information you share on social network sites. Plus, if there are any immediate doubts, speak to a family member or friend to get a second, more objective opinion. For example, they may claim to have a severely ill family member who requires immediate medical attention such as an expensive operation, or they may claim financial hardship due to an unfortunate run of bad luck such as a failed business or mugging in the street. For further advice on how to stay safe online go to www. Please include details of the scam contact you received, for example, email or screenshot. This helps us to warn people about current scams, monitor trends and disrupt scams where possible. Often the fraudster will not ask directly for money, preferring to bide their time and build a bond with their victim before ultimately inventing a reason why they urgently need money transferred into their account. Avoid any arrangement with a stranger that asks for up-front payment via money order, wire transfer, international funds transfer, pre-loaded card or electronic currency, like Bitcoin. They may use a fictional name, or falsely take on the identities of real, trusted people such as military personnel, aid workers or professionals working abroad. Action Fraud is not responsible for the content on external websites. However, the actual number of crimes is thought to be considerably higher, with victims not reporting them owing to embarrassment. If you think you have been scammed, report it to the website, app, or social media site where the scammer first approached you. If you think you have provided your account details to a scammer, contact your bank or financial institution immediately. If you met on a dating site they will try and move you away from the site and communicate via chat or email. Pick a user name that does not include any personal information. Scammers can use your information and pictures to create a fake identity or to target you with a scam. Tell-tale signs your online date may be a fraudster: They often claim to be from Australia or another western country, but travelling or working overseas. They want to communicate with you through instant messaging and texts, rather than through the dating website or chat room where you met. You might even be asked to accept money into your bank account and then transfer it to someone else. Their messages are often poorly written, vague and escalate quickly from introduction to love. A joint partnership between the Government, the National Crime Agency NCA , Ofcom, law enforcement bodies and private sector sponsors from the worlds of technology, communication, retail and finance, the initiative continues to educate, inform and raise awareness of internet security issues to encourage confident, safe use of the internet. Will you be loved up? Fraudsters favour money transfers The figures also demonstrate exactly how and where fraudsters are choosing to exploit their victims.
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