Protecting dating widows
Millions of Americans visit online dating websites every year hoping to find a companion or even a soulmate.
But as Valentine’s Day gets closer, the FBI wants to warn you that criminals use these sites, too, looking to turn the lonely and vulnerable into fast money through a variety of scams..
Recognizing an Online Dating Scam Artist Your online “date” may only be interested in your money if he or she: Do not send money through any wire transfer service to someone you met online.
The chances of recovering your money are very slim.
In addition to losing your money to someone who had no intention of ever visiting you, you may also have unknowingly taken part in a money laundering scheme by cashing phony checks and sending the money overseas and by shipping stolen merchandise (the forwarded package).
In another recently reported dating extortion scam, victims usually met someone on an online dating site and then were asked to move the conversation to a particular social networking site, where the talk often turned intimate.
After a while, though, I realised that eventually I would have to try to fill the gaping hole and I began to think about another aspect of my situation – being single again after 14 years of marriage. One day, my daughter asked me if I was going to get a girlfriend. After a pause, she asked with a hint of excitement: "Will we get a baby brother or sister?
So you send money..rest assured the requests won’t stop there.
These criminals—who also troll social media sites and chat rooms in search of romantic victims—usually claim to be Americans traveling or working abroad. While their most common targets are women over 40 who are divorced, widowed, and/or disabled, but every age group and demographic is at risk. You’re contacted online by someone who appears interested in you.
He or she may have a profile you can read or a picture that is e-mailed to you.
"I want you to find someone else, but only if they are good for the children," she told me.
I got married very young, at aged 22, back in 1999, when people met their partners the old-fashioned way – down the pub or at parties.
The pictures you were sent were most likely phony lifted from other websites.