Avoid online dating scams

How to spot and avoid online dating scams and what to do if a scammer contacts you

Avoid online dating scams

Online dating can be a great way to meet that special someone, but buyer beware, your online honey might be the face of a nasty scam.

Online dating scams cost Australians almost $25 million in 2013 and approximately one in ten dating profiles posted online are considered to be a scam.

So, how can you avoid being scammed? A good rule of thumb is; if you haven’t met the person face-to-face, don’t send them money for any reason. According to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), most criminal groups use a variation of the same scam to target online daters. “Scammers spend time grooming their victims with techniques such as professing their emotional commitment or love and sharing false personal stories” an ACCC spokeswoman said.

It is common for a scammer to organise a meeting with you, only to send a message at the last minute claiming an accident or illness and asking you to send money to help. Another trick might be to ask you to send money for a plane ticket to facilitate a meeting. Whatever the request is, don’t agree to it.

So how can you spot a dating scam? Look for messages which are a little generic or with English which seems ‘off’. You should also be wary of people who profess strong feelings very early on, or who simply seem too good to be true.

You can also try copying and pasting passages from the original message into Google. Common scam messages will be posted on forums online and if large chunks of your message match one of these scam messages then you can feel confident in reporting the user as a scammer.

If you think that you have been contacted by a scammer, or have fallen victim to a scam, you should report it to the Australasian Consumer Task Force website SCAMwatch. You should also report the user to the dating site administrator, along with any evidence that you may have found during a Google search. Both of these actions will help to ensure that the scammers are caught and that others do not fall victim to that particular scam. 

To find out more about online dating and romance scams, visit the SCAMwatch website. 





    COMMENTS

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    Oars
    29th Dec 2014
    11:15am
    This online dating thing is another extension of the "pub checkin' 'em out" scam. In the old days, you got full as a bull, then staggered over to a sheilla and blerted out some pseudo romantic rubbish- AND they liked that. At least they got a good look at yer body. It was hell trying to stand up straight, hold in yer gut, and try to sound intelligent. But the pain was worth it. We all got what we went for- a larf.
    particolor
    29th Dec 2014
    12:01pm
    Who Wansh a KISS !!... HIC !!
    particolor
    29th Dec 2014
    1:01pm
    A Hour Later ... " OO WANCHA KISH ?? "
    Precious 1
    1st Jan 2015
    2:54pm
    Never went for the Pubs in WA...The large Hotels used to be the dancing venues after the Ballrooms faded away etc...I loved the Maison de Danse in UK prior to here......many married there I found one out......
    particolor
    1st Jan 2015
    9:39pm
    Karma will get Him !!
    HOLA
    29th Dec 2014
    1:08pm
    I used to go with my girlfriends to the Trocadero every Saturday night. Frankie Coglan was the conductor, and what a band. The men outnumbered the women so we had a pick of the bunch. They were very well behaved and any hint of drunkenness were quickly shown the front door. My husband said when he went to dances as a young bloke they used to buy a bottle of rough red and share it to give them courage to ask the girls for a dance. Ah, the good old days.
    Precious 1
    1st Jan 2015
    3:00pm
    Yep the men used to out number the women in the 50s in UK...OMG I had more offers to dance than I could manage lololol...the drunks were soon taken care off and out......The bands were terrific too Johnny Dankworth, etc..lololol sometimes a female crooner who hit the heights in the later years...gosh what times were they and I always arrived back home on the last bus which left the city at 11.00pm....and yet etter always a date for the cinema on Sunday afternoons........Happy Days.....xx
    Precious 1
    29th Dec 2014
    7:15pm
    I was intrigued oncew when approaching these site and engaging to enrol lol that so many were without a photo...when I went back the newxt day after paying said fee these people were unavailable...So I checked with mythinking cap on and came to the conclusion that these without photos were unreal and never existed in the first place.....scam to get ur money in as I never ever met anyone and the ones I did met appeared to be enrolling for a lark...I can un derstand NOW years later that they were scamming..I could write a few stories re ones I followed thru who only had a distant image..so funny indeed one even came to Perth I never ever met him but once when I rang him..o yes he gave me a number..it was on board a ship I bet a million dollars was out in the Indian Ocean as I could make out the Indonesian lingo, laughing and probably a fishing boat....lolol that was the start of me looking into some of these sites and wow what I came across no one would willingly believe......
    Pandora's Box
    29th Dec 2014
    7:17pm
    My my Oars, you sound like someone I'd want to meet - not.
    Precious 1
    29th Dec 2014
    7:19pm
    Don't whatever you do send any money to enrol....there may be one or two in Oz who may be genuine but you can imagine yourself these sites are not going to get money rolling in everyday every week so out come the scammers with all sorts of ruses to get women in and men as well I cam across a man who went dancing with us years ago said he'd spent $6,000 to meet someone...of course he never met anyone at all and eventually married a lady outside his house walking her doggy.....funny that ...lol
    particolor
    1st Jan 2015
    2:30pm
    And the Scammers in Uganda said ..Thank You Very Much for the Donation !!..
    HAPPY NEW YEAR !!
    Precious 1
    1st Jan 2015
    2:52pm
    Particolour yes you right....I have often over the years sent small subscriptions to these sites...and they use your photo with no intention of running it all cleanly......anyway I don`t oft go on any anymore ..I did three weeks ago and found several of my friends on there and we all contacted each other home (decent men) and they all had the same story...I think is a sad world...every one of us needs a partner even just to gringe to sometimes.....its not a death sentence,,,and can make your life happier

    Happy New Year to each and all on YLC....Health import tooxx the rest follows on....

    1st Jan 2015
    4:28pm
    I could not be bothered one iota in online dating.
    Why would you bother once you get to a certain age?
    I would never remarry or live with someone but quite happy to have a male friend who has his place and I have mine.
    Friend of mine went on two dates...on the second the guy brought her a load of washing....hence he is no more.
    Precious 1
    1st Jan 2015
    7:02pm
    Hahaha well at least she /he knew where they stood.....I ve never had this sort of thing as never lived with another only hubby first time married and only.....it was a great pleasure to do his washing as he was a lovely soul, gentle and loving family minded etc.....the next longtime was 26 years of friendship and happiness with inbetween 6 years relationship who thought I wasn't ealthy en ough to marry me...lol a diamond ring came after he knew he`d hurt me but too late I moved on the ring as well,...I have handled things as best as I know how to but overall I have had a wonderful life and produced successful nest gens grandies as well all working and all know where they want to be.......sad when things become nasty.......
    Precious 1
    1st Jan 2015
    7:07pm
    PS wasn't wealthy enough,,,,,,,
    particolor
    1st Jan 2015
    9:42pm
    Please send Picture of Ring !!
    Precious 1
    6th Jan 2015
    1:12pm
    Radish....I m emailing a friend at moment who did tell me he had a load of ironing to be done...I`m keeping it all friendly etc and backed off the ironing etc now as pot plants and cultivating from cuttings is far more in my line...........Also the scammer has disappeared now........lololoolol
    Precious 1
    1st Jan 2015
    10:24pm
    The ring went back to sender.............
    Precious 1
    1st Jan 2015
    10:56pm
    I have a question for anyone to give me feedback..don`t be judgemental .....yet lol
    Some months ago a man sent me a message asking if I would be a friend etc online from the biggest (I think) media cover.....he had a membership of this cover but no photo and saying where he lived but no other details.....only age and d.o.b....I exchanged many emails on a daily basis since almost and over Xmas/New Year...we have antiques in common in my case not all that many only inherited etc, op shops , walking etc etc and so forth he had five children of course grown, lived in the Phillipines for many years and was supposed to be going back there for a couple weeks this Jan.....he still won`t show me his photo, or where he lives(the area) or what he did over Xmas/New Year but sent me a email as to where I live and could I book himself into a Hotel and he would come over here for a stay.....I tried to keep it all light and easy......but occasionally tried to pursue the photo , and what he did all day after all he was born so he says in 1938..seems very literate, very secretive, and said he didn't like to converse online on his membership of said cover......(Cover is free) he found my cellfone on my cover and rang me couple of times and also NYE and NYD......I am beginning to think he being silly, is it dementia starting, is he secretive re photo cos he married...??He keeps saying it fun to chat (email) what color is he.....(I had a small roasting from my younger daughter over this) then today he mentions I love God and I cannot see him and whats the difference......I would love to hear from anyone who could give me some really good opinions.......
    Precious 1
    1st Jan 2015
    10:58pm
    I can give more details here for the above..it transpires that he doesn't live where he says online.......and I found his online name doesn't match the name on his Cellfone number.....
    Anonymous
    1st Jan 2015
    11:07pm
    I can sense you are uneasy about this man and he seems to know a lot about you and yet he won't give you many answers.

    If it was me I would be disconnecting from this man.


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