Online Dating Scams: Things You Need to Know & How to Avoid Them

August 3, 2021
Online Dating Scams: Things You Need to Know & How to Avoid Them

While we'd like to think every member of the dating sites in Leeds is authentic, and the free dating Birmingham members are all good guys, the unfortunate reality is that dating scams exist - and they're sometimes pretty smart.

We're not talking here about your random email from a "Nigerian prince" who desperately needs your help to wire $1 trillion to the UK; we're talking about subtle scams from fraudsters who play the long game.

The Best10Dating team has compiled this guide to help you spot opportunistic criminals among the love struck matches and help you avoid any dating scams that could leave you worse off than with a dented ego.

Catfishing Online Scams

We'll start with the typical things you've probably heard of (but still need to be mindful about whenever you're online!).

In a nutshell, catfishing is where someone creates an online profile that isn't them - or it's kind of them, but ten years ago. 

You get the idea; it's passing yourself off as someone or something you're not.

There are some terrifying stories about this, ranging from:

  • Antonio, the ridiculously hot Italian guy who needs €100 for his plane ticket to come and sweep you off your feet. But he's actually Kevin, a 67-year-old scammer from Bolton.
  • Stephie, a striking teen who spends hours on young dating platforms writing songs with her sweetheart. Except she's Lukas, a 26-year-old con artist in the Czech Republic, conning thousands of love-struck teens out of their hard earned cash.
  • Pete, the relaxed young guy who's just looking for someone to make him happy - but he's a predator 30 years older who gets his kicks scamming young women.

These are extreme examples, but never lose sight of the potential to put yourself at needless risk if you aren't taking the necessary precautions.

Use Google reverse image search, and you'll instantly see if this profile picture has been stolen from elsewhere. Check out this person on other social media sites, and don't hesitate to back away (quickly!) if you've got any clue they're not who they say.

The Long-Distance Dating Trick

Next up, we'll talk about those people who can't possibly meet you in person because they're (*delete as appropriate):

  • Working on an oil rig
  • Saving orphans in Africa
  • In the military
  • Flying with Doctors without borders

Yep, sure thing. The long-distance scam is set up right from the start, and there is zero opportunity to meet them, so you'll probably have a more challenging time verifying if the profile is authentic.

Invariably, the conversation will sooner or later lead to a message asking you to wire money or pay some cash onto a gift card or MoneyPak card.

Here are some of the most common reasons:

  • They need to pay for travel expenses to come and marry you.
  • It's a medical emergency, and their insurance isn't paying out.
  • Customs is demanding a hefty payment to collect their next paycheck.
  • The visa costs to travel are too high to cover on their salary.

It seems so obvious when you look at it like this, but the issue is that even on the most popular dating apps Boston, people go to great lengths to establish a rapport before they spring you for the cash.

Never, ever, EVER send anybody money online, no matter how plausible, no matter how much you believe it's authentic.

Also Read: Which are the Most Popular Platforms for Online Dating in 2021?

ID Fraud on Online Dating Sites

Our next scam is ID fraud, and it's a severe problem that can cause no end of chaos, grief and upset.

Again - you need to know the signs! 

While all the Best10Dating recommendations are fantastic dating sites in Leeds or other popular UK cities, you also need to know that the dating platform is sometimes scamming you, not necessarily an individual profile.

We'd strongly advise selecting your choice of free dating Birmingham apps from our suggestions or otherwise looking out for:

  • Excessive requests for personal information.
  • Credit card details, even though your account is meant to be free.
  • Inappropriate questions, like your mother's maiden name, first pet, or street you grew up on.

A legit dating site won't ever ask for those things, and you'll be able to choose whatever password you like without needing to provide reams of personal details.

The Pusher Posing as a Dater

Now, if you haven't seen this before, you'd be forgiven for thinking it's a bit far fetched. But, believe us, it happens a LOT more than you probably think!

Here's how the scam works:

  1. The dealer sets up a decent profile on the most popular dating apps Boston - its authentic, real pictures, the works.
  2. They start up a tonne of private chats, being charming, friendly, kind, and perhaps sending match requests to people that are a lot older than them, or maybe that you wouldn't expect them to be interested in (flattery works, we're only human!).
  3. Next up, they'll keep chatting about their business. Now, it might not be drugs. It could be a rubbish MLM scheme, or a local service, or knock-off counterfeit t-shirts. It's something you don't want and have no interest in buying.
  4. To seal the deal, they'll beg you to come to a little party, a date, let them cook you dinner, and you'll find yourself in a high-pressure situation to buy things, including illegal merchandise, all in the name of love.

Anybody who starts chatting about their 'business' (in the loosest sense of the term) probably isn't there for dating.

It can also be tricky to find yourself in a position where you've been duped, as well as a tad embarrassing that you've fallen for the scam to trick you into thinking you're heading for a romantic date when it's something far less exciting.

Dating sites are not sales platforms.

If you ever get messages that feel off, pushy, uncomfortable or plain inappropriate, you need to block the account, report it to site admin, and consider it a lucky break that you knew what to look out for!

Lauren Edwards-Fowle
Lauren Edwards-Fowle
Lauren is a freelance writer passionate about how we develop rewarding experiences, and overcoming the barriers we face to living our best lives. Lauren writes regularly about the modern world of dating, relationships, parenthood, and social dynamics.

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