For some, Valentine's Day means they might be lonely. I've been there, and I know many who are there now. That loneliness can distort your perspective in a way that trumps common sense. This leads people to make badly considered decisions that only worsen their circumstances. Unfortunately, scammers use this raw emotion as leverage on online dating websites and social media.
These scammers are like loneliness relief valves. In a way, they provide a different perspective by making baseless promises that they never intend to fulfill. In the end, victims end up emptying their bank accounts.
The key to be safe and secure is awareness of yourself and your emotions and the intentions of others who contact you.
Don't be an online dating statistic. Follow these tips:
- Look for red flags. If you are contacted online and they make no reference to you or your name, it may be a "broadcast" scam going to others.
- If they immediately start talking about marriage and love and showing immediate affection, run really fast.
- Anyone asking for money for any reason is a con-man. Never under any circumstances wire money, send checks, cash etc.
- When communicating with someone online and it seems it takes days for them to respond, this may be a sign they are married.
- When communicating with a potential mate via online dating or even in the physical world, please do not give up any information to them until you are entirely sure they are "good."