In a USA.gov article the federal government posted some useful tips to help consumers beware of the That fraudster targeting lonely hearts. Fraudsters prey upon people who have a need, says fraud expert Linda Webb, aka the Fraud Dog. Fraudsters know that people who are looking for love online  are easy victims.

Here are a few tips from the USA.gov article that are important to know to avoid being scammed

The State Department offers these tips on how to recognize sweetheart scams:

  • The scammer and the victim meet online – often through Internet dating or employment sites.
  • The scammer asks for money to get out of a bad situation or to provide a service.
  • Photographs that the scammer sends of “him/herself” show a very attractive person. The photo appears to have been taken at a professional modeling agency or photographic studio.
  • The scammer has incredibly bad luck— often getting into car crashes, arrested, mugged, beaten, or hospitalized — usually all within the course of a couple of months. They often claim that their key family members (parents and siblings) are dead. Sometimes, the scammer claims to have an accompanying child overseas who is very sick or has been in an accident.
  • The scammer claims to be a native-born American citizen, but uses poor grammar indicative of a non-native English speaker. Sometimes the scammer will use eloquent romantic language that is plagiarized from the Internet.

FBI also offers additional advice on dealing with sweetheart scams. You can report Internet scams to www.ic3.gov.

 

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