If you’re suspicious, turn to Google: search their name and “dating scam” or do a Google image search to see whether they’ve taken someone else’s picture or one that’s easily available online.
If you find the picture is a fake, report the profile to the dating site immediately.
Free Online dating sites are becoming more and more popular. We’ve done a huge research and picked the safe and virus free sites. Plenty of Fish True to its word, POF has the highest number of users in this list. You get the full package for free but like other free sites, there are a plethora of premium packages that you can buy such as seeing when other users read your messages.
According to statistics, one third of all married couples in the US met online. POF was among the first online dating sites and as such, they have been able to refine the site to up user experience. Like POF, the site is free with added features for premium members (otherwise referred to as A-list members).
And a lot of the time, you’re not just talking to one person behind each profile - you could be exchanging messages with a circle of fraudsters acting together, according to KIS Finance.
They're in West Africa, Eastern Europe and it's very difficult for British law enforcement to take action against them in those jurisdictions,” Steve Profitt, Deputy Head of Action Fraud explains.
Watch out for inconsistencies and repetition too - if you’re talking to a team of scammers, they’re bound to forget what’s previously been said and slip-up occasionally.
After reporting the profile to the dating site, stop all contact and get in touch with Action Fraud on 03.
One of the most common techniques is to build up trust with the person by messaging for weeks or even months before suddenly having an emergency - the fake person being mugged but their daughter needing urgent surgery, for example - and asking for money.
But then they suddenly need money for rent too, then food, then medical fees, and it can quickly escalate.