Scammers now taking advantage of the national day of love. Romance scams have become a huge part of online corruption. According to the Federal Trade Commission, victims lost $143 million in romance schemes last year.
Plenty of people are looking for love online like on popular apps like Tinder. Stephen Inks recently used the app and thought he’d made a good match.
But, things started getting a little suspicious. “She started to ask me for my confirmation number to see if my page was legit. And I never got a confirmation number before with Tinder,” says Inks.
Ink’s match sent him a third-party site to verify his account. It asked him for his credit card information saying there would be no charge.
Luckily, he quickly realized the scammer’s intentions and forfeited his quest for love. But, Danielle Hale with the Better Business Bureau, says people fall for these so-called “romance scams” more often than you’d think.
“About half of the victims fall for this scam and they’re losing of upwards of $2,000,” says Hale.
And sometimes the scams don’t stop there. “We’ve seen them send them money not just once but two or three times because they feel very attached to this person. And, they feel like they know this person,” Hale added.
Hale says there are some ways to protect yourself. “Do a little investigating. Get the person to video chat with you or get them on the phone. If they are avoiding you, that’s a big red flag.”
Their biggest tip against this one that can go for many scams is following your gut; usually, if it seems too good to be true- it is.
And if you are worried about something you found online you can always call your local BBB for more information.