Your All-In-One Guide To Romance Scams With Statistics
What is a romance scam?
Depending on how you look at it, there couldn’t be a worse or more opportunistic time for romance scams to occur – especially in the last year. We’ve all been hunkered down in some place around the world due to lockdowns, and this has had a huge effect on the way we live; for some, in unimaginable ways. Something most people can agree on is that interacting with people hasn’t been a possibility for a while now. Speaking to strangers beyond supermarket cashiers just hasn’t been on the cards. And we’re not all lucky enough to have people at home to keep us sane – whether that’s family, friends, or someone we’re in a relationship with.
For most of us, finding love isn’t easy at the best of times. During a pandemic? Anyone looking to find their life partner is forced to turn to dating apps, and not all of them are reliable or as legitimate as the big names (we all know what they are). I’m sure we can all imagine that this can lead to some really unfortunate situations. While some of us are more privy to the ways of internet dating and online romance scams than others, the same can’t be said for everyone; especially those that are new to the online dating game and are slightly more desperate than others.
I mean, when you consider that those over 200 million dollars were lost to romance scams in 2019 alone, you start to realize just how much love scams are a real thing. Look at Australia – of the 83 million AUD lost in 2019 to these scams, 33% of those took place on social media. So you don’t even have to be operating on dating apps.
How Can You Tell if Someone is a Romance Scammer?
This is likely one of the most saddening online scams – people that get stung are simply looking for companionship, and have a lot of affection to give. They have so much affection to give that they’re prepared to ignore the obvious signs that come with sharing huge amounts of cash – or any amount of cash for that matter – with people they can’t verify to be legitimate and have never even met. In order to avoid these scams, you need to know what to look for. Besides the obvious – like not allowing your need for love to skew your better judgment and part with your savings – there are various signs to consider. How well a person can speak the local language of a country they pertain to be from is a huge one, for example.
Anyway, look out for the telltale signs; they exist. They might be more obvious to some readers, but each one is important to include. Read on to see what they are.
Love Is In The Air (Too Quickly): If someone’s professing their love for you quickly, keep your wits about you. This is an obvious sign of an internet love scam. You think you’re the only person they’re trying to get money from? They’re trying to wrap things up as quickly as possible, and if they don’t succeed with you, they’re onto the next sorry soul.
Incomplete Profiles: It’s true, some of us prefer to have as little information as possible on our profiles, and that’s okay. But if the person you’re talking to has a couple of sketchy, bad-quality images, and doesn’t have localized information – like schools or places of work you’re familiar with, stay away.
There’s An Emergency: This is all-to-common across all online scams, especially internet romance scams. The pleasantries of getting to properly know one another are out the window because low and behold, they have a family emergency. Hospital bills; fear of eviction; travel: these are just some of the excuses you can expect, and you’ll hear them far sooner than you should feel comfortable with. Don’t ignore your instinct.
How To Outsmart A Romantic Scammer
Honestly, outsmarting them entirely depends on how aware you are of their practices. The key tip here isn’t just knowing how romance scammers operate, but how your average online scammer will try and separate you from your money too. Whether it’s a Nigerian prince scam or anything similar, you’ll do yourself a huge favor by getting to grips with the obvious signs of any scammer.
Something you’ll notice is that the approaches used in these types of scams are remarkably similar; those that involve a scammer actually interacting with you, that is. Why? Because they’re relying on you. Ultimately, it’s you that has to give up your cash; it’s you that has to go along with it and feel guilty about the circumstances they’re telling you. It doesn’t have to be love – most romance scammers don’t wait long enough for you to start feeling any emotions. Feelings of loneliness, desperation, the need for human contact – this is what they’re counting on.
They rely entirely on you to be desperate for love and not wise to their ways. The best thing you can do is familiarize yourself with the telltale signs of how these scammers operate and don’t act with your heart; use your head. Never send anyone money you don’t know, especially when you can’t verify their existence and their profile clearly looks shady. We all know what a real profile looks like; and, let’s be honest, no real person on these apps is gonna ask for your money anyway.
The real way to outsmart them, though, is by protecting other users. Don’t just move on – report any profile you see to be acting this way. There’s no doubt that they operate a massive number of profiles, but any profile you can get banned means associated email addresses, phone numbers, and social media profiles can’t be used anymore.
What Information Does A Romance Scammer Need?
Truth be told, scammers don’t need a lot of information from you. What they really need is for you to go well out your way to send them money. They don’t need your bank account details for this, nor do they need any personal information.
Actually, two of the most common methods you’ll come across are sending gift card codes to the person requesting them and making direct wire transfers via Western Union Bank. Both are entirely unsolvable, so be wary when sending anyone money or credit of any kind via these methods that you’ve never met. That isn’t to say that every instance is a scam, it’s just that if anyone is asking you to send money via these methods, especially so soon after matching on dating apps, you’re really unlikely to ever see that money back.
The person you’re speaking to, who’s asking you to hand over money during this scam, in 99% of cases, isn’t the person you’re looking to help anyway. Having their Western Union details won’t help you, either, since it doesn’t act like a real bank. A person can withdraw this money as soon as you send it and never action that account again.
Now, if you get access to a real bank account, there’s a solid chance you can redeem these funds, and that’s where Payback LTD comes in.
Reporting A Romance Scam and Getting Your Money Back!
Just because being scammed involves romance – doesn’t mean you should be too embarrassed to say anything about it. In fact, there are companies, like us, that might actually be able to get your money back, and we don’t judge! We don’t care how you got scammed or why you handed the money over – all we care about is doing what we can to get your money back
At Payback LTD, we’ve helped countless people in your exact position get their money back. But, as stated above, it’ll really help us take swift action with your case if you’ve done this through bank accounts, as opposed to gift card deposits and Western Union. There’s a good chance that we can also retrieve any cryptocurrency you’ve sent to scammers too. Get in touch with us right away and don’t delay.