The online dating world has its fair share of con artists who prey upon the innocent, gullible, and unwary.
So it shouldn’t come as any surprise to you that scammers will try and trick you to “part” you from your money.
It’s easy to be tricked if you’re not vigilant or if you’re unaware of these dating scams.
Immediate red flags for internet dating scams include:
1. Poor or unusual grammar.
2. A request for your email address or Skype or home phone number even though he just “met” you online and you don’t know anything about him.
3. Inability to or taking too long to answer simple questions about themselves.
4. Evasive answers that don’t tell you anything.
5. Facebook friend requests from strangers.
Here are three internet dating scams or “Romance Scams” to be on the look out for:
1. The “Cam” Romance Scam
He’s hot. He’s handsome. He’s enticing. And he’s looking for someone just like you.
At least that’s what he says in his dating profile.
In reality, you could be his next victim. Because he’s not looking for a relationship, he’s looking to separate you from some of your hard earned money.
Here’s how the cam scam works…
He initiates contact with you or he responds to your email.
You’re flattered with the attention – especially since he’s so handsome.
He’s so charming you’re dazzled.
Of course, you’re falling in love with him.
And eventually – when you’ve shared lots of personal details – he asks you to turn on your cam and let him see you.
Since you’re “in love” with him you want to share some intimate time with him – even though it can’t be in person.
First he asks you to wave to him.
Then he asks you to blow him a kiss.
Then he asks you to be flirty and tantalize him.
Before you know it, and feeling quite adventurous, you start taking off your clothes to show the love of your life what you look like naked.
Little do you know, he’s filming all of this and then making photos of you naked.
And naturally, when he asks to be your friend on Facebook you readily agree.
After all, you want to show all of your friends your “new guy.”
Next thing you know he’s threatening to use your cam shots and show them to other people – even your friends and family on Facebook – because by this time you’ve shared a lot of information with him.
He might even know where you work.
It could be embarrassing to say the least, or even worse, lead to your dismissal at work if your employer saw your video/photos.
Of course, he says that if you pay him money you’ll be safe and he won’t distribute the video or photos.
In a word: it’s blackmail.
So, if you’re looking for a wonderful man to have a relationship with…then this is one “hot number” you’ll definitely want to cross off your list.
Internet Dating Scams – Tip #1: Camming can be dangerous to your reputation and even your job.
You can be the victim of blackmail or even identity theft.
Avoid at all costs strangers asking you to go on cam and taking your clothes off. (If your grandmother wouldn’t approve, you know it’s wrong.)
2. “Send Me Money” Romance Scam
Every day, unsuspecting women are conned into sending money to strangers they “met” and “fell in love with” online through a dating web site.
They’ve never met these strangers and they never will.
Because these men pose as someone else and are con artists.
They’re inventive with their stories. They post phony pictures. And they go by several names.
They could be from Nigeria…Africa…England…France…or any other country in the world.
They could even be from your own state or province.
Their tale of woe goes something like this…
“My mother needs urgent surgery…”
“My child is sick and needs an urgent operation or medical attention…”
“I’m in hospital and I need money…”
“I’ve been stranded overseas and I don’t have enough money to get home…”
“I don’t have enough money for a passport…”
“I want to come and visit you because I’m so in love with you but I can’t afford the plane ticket…”
“I desperately need your help…”
It doesn’t matter how urgent the plea…how pitiful or heartbreaking the story…how convincing the promises…or how sincere their expressions of love seem…if you get a request for money from someone you’ve “met” online or through an online dating web site, it’s time to walk away immediately and block that person from contacting you again.
No matter how you rationalize it…you’re being set up to be a victim of fraud.
Remember…the photos they send aren’t theirs. Their stories aren’t true. The promises they make are false.
And they’re pros at what they do. That’s why they do it – because they’ve been successful in fleecing lonely, desperate, trusting, innocent women of their money with false stories and promises.
They’re not in love with you…and never will be. They are not your “soul mate” no matter how much they sound like it. There is no “connection” or “chemistry.” They are simply telling you what you want to hear. And your situation is no different from that of any of their other victims.
These people are not a part of your life – they are a part of your imagination. There’s no reason to feel guilty that you can’t help them. They are simply preying on your emotions. They’re appealing to your kind nature. And their only goal is to bilk you of your money.
So step away from the fantasy world that they have created, come back to your senses, and rejoin the real world. All they want is your money. And the moment you send them money they’ll ask for more. And when you’re unable to send more they’ll disappear into thin air.
Your situation is no different from the hundreds of other stories from people who have been victimized. So don’t be the next victim.
One final thought and reality check: If they need money that desperately, they’re not the type of person you’re looking for anyway.
Internet Dating Scams – Tip #2: If they ask for money, walk away from them immediately and discontinue all communication with them. No second chances. No making excuses. No rationalizing your actions. No, “But my situation is different.” No, “But I’m in love with him.”
3. “I’ll Send You My Check” Romance Scam
If you thought being conned out of your money was bad enough, this scam could very well land you in jail!
Your online “sweetheart” is so busy he can’t get to the bank to deposit his pay checks. But he trusts you because he “loves” you.
He wants to arrange to send you “his” checks (or money orders) to you so you can cash them for him.
All you have to do is send him his money.
Sounds simple enough, right? No harm in helping out your “sweetheart,” right?
It turns out those “pay checks” or “money orders” (or any other type of “check”) are phony. And if you negotiate them you’ll have committed a criminal offense and be charged with a crime.
And guess what?
Your “sweetheart” won’t be around to help you. He’ll just move onto the next victim.
And you’ll be left with a criminal record and a ruined life.
Internet Dating Scams – Tip #3: Don’t cash a stranger’s check. If he’s too busy to get his own money then there’s something wrong and he should be avoided at all costs.
Meeting someone from an online dating web site can be a wonderful and rewarding experience that leads to finding your true love.
But online dating has its own particular hazards that you should be aware of.
As with any dealings with strangers – especially on the internet – use common sense…take a few simple precautions…check things out…and listen to your intuition and instincts. Don’t let your heart and imagination override your common sense.
If you do come across any of these online dating scammers, block their profile immediately, report them to the online dating service, and consider blocking international profiles since they are probably of no interest to you anyway.
By being aware of these internet dating scams you’ll be much more likely to enjoy your online dating experience instead of being the next online dating romance scam victim.
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IMAGE CREDIT: Lovers Dawn by SailorJohn at http://www.sxc.hu/browse.phtml?f=view&id=737156