How to Avoid a Romance Scam When Using Online Dating Sites

Not everyone using online dating sites is looking for love. Scammers create fake online profiles using photos of other people — even stolen pictures of real military personnel. They profess their love quickly. And they tug at your heartstrings with made-up stories about how they need money — for emergencies, hospital bills, or travel. Why all of the tricks? The scammers transfer stolen money into the new account, and then tell their victims to wire the money out of the country. Here are some warning signs that an online love interest might be a fake.

Catfishing victim speaks out after being caught in online dating scam

Oftentimes, the con artists convince their marks to open bank accounts under the guise of sending or receiving funds. The story may be spun further, and the scammer will ultimately convince the victim to open the account in their name or register a limited liability company and allow money transfers to flow into the account. In reality, however, the fraudsters transfer stolen money into the account and instruct their unsuspecting crime accomplices into forwarding the money to accounts controlled by the fraudsters.

Common catfishing/romance scams may involve a person or group making a fake profile on a popular dating site (OKCupid or Plenty of Fish.

Sidney Ochouba, 40, and Busayo Oladapo, 38, catfished their victims by using fake names and pretending to be aid workers stranded in Syria without cash. Two crooks who preyed on vulnerable women in a online dating scam have been jailed for a total of five and a half years. Sidney Ochouba, 40, and Busayo Oladapo, 38, used bogus names to con seven victims between and The duo had earlier been convicted of being involved in the fraud as well as acquiring criminal property.

Ochouba – a former architect graduate – was locked up for 30 months while toilet attendant Oladapo was sentenced to three years. There were emails, even a story, but he caught me at a very vulnerable state. I cared for him for five years. I was not in the best place at the time. She recalled: “I felt stupid that someone got one over me this way and I get angry that someone could to this to me.

There’s Plenty of Fish in the Sea… Including scammers: The Dangers of Online Dating Scams

Never seen anything like it in my life. I lost track the times I saw chubsters saying if they didn’t reply its because they didn’t feel a connection or spark!!! Oh the irony. You couldn’t make it up. It beggers belief they act like they do.

plenty of fish scam videos and latest news articles; your source for the latest news on plenty of fish scam.

The woman who contacted us at PIX11 Investigates said she wanted others to learn from her mistake and agreed to be interviewed, though she wanted her identity withheld. Many people have found their match on internet dating sites, but there is clearly potential danger involved when you reveal personal information to strangers. It is one of many sites that are free, with no strings attached.

POF claims to have over 10,, members worldwide. Like most dating sites, POF does not do background checks. One of the men who contacted her was using the name Big Daddy is Here. He said his real name was Kevin Brown. Brown, it later turned out, was catfishing, meaning he used a made up profile to lure people on dating sites into a relationship, sometimes for the purpose of fraud. He exchanged texts, phone calls and pictures with the woman who contacted PIX11 for two weeks.

They agreed to meet for a date on a jazz river cruise near Newark. The pair met at Penn Station during the late afternoon.

Police warn of dating scam where man poses as underage girl’s father, demands money

Navigating the world of Internet dating can be an exciting and fun way to meet potential partners. However, you might quickly discover that some things are not what they seem on certain sites and profiles. Though it is one of the fastest-growing ways for singles to meet each other and form lasting relationships, there are definitely those who use the sites for dishonest purposes.

These red flags may refer to clues that the person on the other end of a profile might be untrustworthy, or that the website itself might not be truthful about its intended purpose. All dating websites will ask for a certain amount of information in order to match you successfully with people who will hold your interest.

Many of the profiles on dating sites are scams, fake profiles people put up as a tool to get to know people they then trick into giving them money.

Scammers take advantage of people looking for romantic partners, often via dating websites, apps or social media by pretending to be prospective companions. They play on emotional triggers to get you to provide money, gifts or personal details. How this scam works Warning signs Protect yourself Have you been scammed? More information. Dating and romance scams often take place through online dating websites, but scammers may also use social media or email to make contact.

They have even been known to telephone their victims as a first introduction. They may use a fictional name, or falsely take on the identities of real, trusted people such as military personnel, aid workers or professionals working abroad. Dating and romance scammers will express strong emotions for you in a relatively short period of time, and will suggest you move the relationship away from the website to a more private channel, such as phone, email or instant messaging.

They often claim to be from Australia or another western country, but travelling or working overseas. They may take months to build what may feel like the romance of a lifetime and may even pretend to book flights to visit you, but never actually come. They may also ask you to send pictures or videos of yourself, possibly of an intimate nature. Often the scammer will pretend to need the money for some sort of personal emergency. For example, they may claim to have a severely ill family member who requires immediate medical attention such as an expensive operation, or they may claim financial hardship due to an unfortunate run of bad luck such as a failed business or mugging in the street.

The scammer may also claim they want to travel to visit you, but cannot afford it unless you are able to lend them money to cover flights or other travel expenses.

N.J. couple charged in $6M dating site scam that bilked at least 33 victims

A South Jersey man who allegedly helped scam dozens of people out of millions of dollars in an online-dating scheme was arrested Wednesday, federal authorities said. Rubbin Sarpong, 35, of Millville, was charged with one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud. District Court in Camden.

Agents found profiles allegedly used in the scam on sites including, eHarmony.​com, and Plenty of Fish, documents show. The.

Sh’reen Morrison had been on an online dating site for only a few weeks before she realized that something was seriously wrong with the man who had been actively pursuing her by text message and email. They’d hit it off right away, and he said he lived just outside of Phoenix, which seemed relatively proximate to a woman in remote Yuma, Ariz. But meeting in person was always a problem. First, he was traveling through India with his daughter.

Then the daughter became ill and had to be hospitalized. When Morrison suggested that her suitor put his daughter on a plane to get better medical attention at home — and even offered to pick the girl up at the airport — a new crisis struck. By then, Morrison knew she was dealing with a scammer.

What You Need to Know About Romance Scams

That may come as no surprise since tens of millions of U. In fact, the Identity Theft Resource Center, which I lead, has received calls from victims of online dating scams. In one instance, a male victim met someone through an online dating service. Here are two of the highest profile scams that have directly affected online dating participants:. Horror stories about romance scammers who use sweet talk to steal money from their victims are all too common.

It is alleged in Court documents that beginning in May , victims were contacted by scammers via online dating sites such as Plenty of Fish.

Martins Friday Inalegwu, 31, and Steincy Mathieu, 24, a husband and wife from Maple Shade, face charges of conspiracy to commit wire and mail fraud, according to the New Jersey U. Authorities arrested Inalegwu while Mathieu remained at large. The married couple and their conspirators, including some in Nigeria, carried out the con from October through last month, according to documents in the case.

In all, federal investigators identified 33 victims who were scammed around the country. Authorities alleged the scammers reached their victims through dating websites and social media, and pretended to strike up a romantic relationship with their targets. Agents found profiles allegedly used in the scam on sites including, eHarmony. The conspirators bilked their supposed online romantic interests out of money using false emergencies, according to investigators.

Some of the claims included customs fees, taxes, medical and travel expenses. Court documents show the victims wired the money or mailed checks to the scammers, who used the fake online personas. In one case, a victim was duped by a profile claiming to be a Kentucky-native and widower who purported to be in South Africa for work, according to a criminal complaint.

Woman duped out of $37K in ‘romance scam’ through Plenty of Fish

Many Americans are turning to the internet in order to search for love. Online dating and dating apps are the new wave of the future for both younger generations and older generations alike. And sadly the surge in online dating has also created a potential for scammers to target people looking for love.

Hello Nick Stone Thanks for posting to Hangouts. Scam- This should tell you all you need to know.

One valley woman decided to try one out. Marna Daugherty was happily married for 20 years and without any notice, her husband passed away. As a result, she’ll be the first to tell you that the grief has been unbearable. She says trying to get over the sudden and unexpected death of her husband a year and a half ago is nearly impossible. Daugherty found that “someone else” on the Internet by using a website called Plenty of Fish.

It’s here, she says, she fell for a man with a romantic sounding name. Along with photographs, this so-called Gary Andreas shared with Daugherty online, he also told her he was 58 years old, divorced and traveled the world as a civil engineer. I have 75 pages, every single day written by like a romance novelist or a poet. Oh and this poet didn’t stop with love letters.

Why Plenty of Fish is Terrible