Romance cons are big business, costing an average loss of more than $10,000 per victim in the U.S. Scammers know how to make a connection, tailoring their sweet talk to their victim’s responses.
- First comes instalove: Your new friend immediately moves the conversation to email or instant messaging — and just as quickly falls in love.
- Long distance romance: They say they’re from your town, but are currently out of the country. Emergencies keep you apart when making plans to meet in person.
- Money, honey: Then come the asks for help with travel fees; a child or other relative’s hospital bills; expenses while a big business deal comes through; or recovery from a temporary setback.
- Do some digging, including an image search of the profile photo used on the dating site, and consider a background check if you aren’t finding any information.
- Don’t mix friends and finance. Do not give credit card or financial account details, or personal identifying information (e.g., Social Security number) to anyone you don’t know and trust.
- Break off contact immediately.
- Do not send any more money.
- Report to: