In this article, I am going to be discussing romance scams and why many people are still falling prey to these criminals, I am also going to give you tips that will help you avoid these hurtful and terrible experience. I am going to be sharing with you very valuable information that if you take it to heart, it can save you a lot of shame, heartache, and lots of money. This is how to avoid romance scams
So sit back and relax, as we learn how to avoid romance scams. Let me start by saying that if you are a victim of this horrible crime, I am so sorry for the pain you must be going through, I should also say that I have encountered a lot of these criminals during my online dating journey, and even though I did not lose money (although they really tried) I did suffer a lot of heartache and pain as a result of being abused emotionally by these heartless criminals who have no better things to do but prey on innocent hard-working people.
Last Updated on 31st of May 2020, I am updating this article because I have come across more information that will help you avoid romance scams. I have also written a new article about the Ukrainian romance scam. I had to write it as an article because adding all that info here would have made this article too long
If You Are A Victim Of A Romance Scam, You Are Not Alone
If you are a victim of this heartless act, let me tell you that you are not alone, research shows that in 2018 a total of $80million was lost in romance scams in the US alone and in the UK the story is not any different. People have lost millions of pounds to these kinds of scams.
But why are people still falling to these traps? there is information everywhere about these scams yet people are still losing their life savings to romance scams, and actually all dating sites do warn people about scams and they do have advice on how to avoid them, and they even go further to tell their members to never send money to someone you have only met online.
And the most strange thing is in most if not all cases, of romance scams, the victim has never seen the person not even on a video call. So you ask yourself why would one send money to a person they haven’t even seen on skype or face time? the thing is, by the time the person sends the money, they don’t even have time to think of what they are doing because it’s usually an emergency and at this point, the scammer has already gained your trust because they do take time before they ask for money.
After Sending The First Amount Of Money No Matter How Small, It’s Downhill From There
Once the initial amount is transferred, then it’s downhill from there because there will be emergency one after another, the popular age group that falls into these kinds of traps are from 40 years onwards, and it’s usually people who are emotionally vulnerable, widows, and widowers, as well as divorcees.
But again how do these innocent people fall for this lies? The truth is its a very long process and the scammer takes time to manipulate the victim and play mind games by telling you how much they love you and how you have made their life better by being with them and basically they make you feel like the most loved person in the world.
well, how do they know what to say to you, and what words to use? You are the one who will provide them with the information they need, in other words, they will use your own information that they will gather from you to manipulate you. And the way they will do this is by asking you questions about yourself.
Be Careful If They Are Only Interested In Learning More About You
Tip number one, be very suspicious of a person who is always asking you questions about yourself but offering very little information about themselves. Or someone who will mirror most or everything you say, for example, let’s say you are a widow, they will also say that their wife died of cancer a few years back, or let’s say you are divorced, they are divorced too with kids.
Let’s say, you divorced because your spouse was cheating on you then they will say their spouse did the same, all this is done to make you have things in common and to show that the scammer understands your pain and you have painful experiences in common, that speeds up the trust.
The truth is that it’s very hard for an outsider to understand the kind of manipulation and emotional abuse that the victims of romance scams go through, the thing is when one is joining a dating site, they are looking for love, for someone who will care for them and love them, in other words, there is a void and that void is what the scammer takes advantage of.
Some People Even Think Its Witchcraft
I have heard some people say that maybe there is witchcraft involved in these scams, that there is no way a person would spend all their life savings and even go as far as selling their house to send money to a stranger unless there was a supernatural force involved. I don’t know about witchcraft but I will say this, love is a powerful thing, and love has made people do many strange things.
And besides these victims are not really thinking that they are losing money, they are usually made to believe that they are helping their partner get out of a foreign county and collect his diamonds so he can come home and get married. So tip number two, if you are involved with someone who claims to have a box full of gold and diamonds and he wants you to help him ship it or collect it, run for your life because you are in big trouble.
This Tip On Its Own Will Help You Avoid Romance Scam Please Try It
Now I am going to request you to do one thing and this is tip number 3 if you are communicating with someone online whether it’s on a dating site or dating app, I want you to stop what you are doing and contact that person and tell them to get on skype, tell them this is a make or break, either they get on skype or you are done. If they love you as they keep saying they do why are they not interested in seeing you in real-time? I will wait, go on contact that prince or princess charming right now.
You see when I was doing my online dating I came across a very attractive guy and he was very sweet to me, and I have to admit he told me all the right things, but because I am the kind of person who likes reading and watching documentaries, I was always reading about online dating, but I was more interested in the success stories although occasionally I would click on an article about scams and I would read it.
So one day I read an article that said I should always insist on skype, which I did and my prince charming gave lots of excuses as to why he cannot get on skype, I had been talking to this person for 3 months and so I entertained his excuses for a while until one day I told him either you get on skype and let me see you or I am done, at this point he started sending me small videos, but he would not get on skype.
Be Careful Of Someone Who Only Sends You Pre-recorded Videos
May I also add that the small recordings were just general things like someone walking and recording the streets there were just random things that had nothing to do with me or the relationship I thought I had with this person, the video would have a caption saying this is me on my way to work or this was me yesterday, etc.
When I told him I do not want to see those rubbish recordings and that I want to see him face to face in real-time, he started getting very rude and he sent me a very long email with all kinds of insults, and that was that my so-called prince charming was gone.
Now it’s very important and this is my tip number 4 do not be so quick to move the communication from the dating site, the reason for this is the dating sites have a software that will scan some keywords in emails to see if they have been used in scam emails and this is why the scammer will push you to move your communication to your personal email and phone. Because they don’t want the dating website to have enough time to scan the emails.
Have Had An Email Or Text That Doesn’t Make Sense? That’s Because It Was Probably Sent By a Different Person
Keep in mind that these scammers work in groups so they have a way of writing and actually most of the emails and texts they send are pre-written so all they do is to add your name and maybe a couple of lines, so it could be that you haven’t even been speaking to the same person, have you had an email that doesn’t make sense or it doesn’t follow the thread of your conversation? well, it could be that it was sent by a different person and not the person you were talking to earlier.
Notice in many emails and texts they will not use your name, they will say, baby, darling, sweetheart, wife/husband that’s because they are sending that same message to so many people. But sometimes they will put some effort and use your name. I had that problem of baby, honey, sweetheart, and to be honest up to today as I am writing this, I really don’t like to be called honey, sweetheart and all those things(I have shared this with my husband but he doesn’t get it)
Ok I know that sometimes it’s really hard to turn someone down especially when you’ve been speaking and sharing so much with someone and believing they love you, also and this is something that unless you’ve gone through it you will not understand, it is very possible to fall in love with someone even if you’ve not met in person, actually the fact that you’ve not met makes the feelings very intense.
Please Speak To Your Bank First, They Probably Have Delt With A Case Like Yours Before
So the point I want to make here is, if you must send money( which I do not recommend at all) do it through your bank and don’t do it yourself, go to your bank and speak to your bank manager or a representative of the bank, someone with authority to do account tracing, the reason why I say this, its because banks can see if the account you are sending money to, if it has been receiving money from other customers and also they can see the movement of the money something that you will not be able to do.
So don’t be ashamed just explain the estuation to your bank and they should be able to help you, I will, however, say it again, you should never send money to someone you’ve only met online, and also there is something you should know before you send that money. It doesn’t matter if it’s a small amount, you should know once you send the first amount, the scammers will spread your information to the whole network because now they know they got you, and now you will be in their list of easy prey. Remember this is an international organized cybercrime network.
Don’t Keep Things To Yourself, Speak To Someone
Please before you send that money, speak to someone, don’t keep things to yourself, by sharing things with another person, maybe a friend could help you see things in a different light especially if you are having doubts, and especially if the person you met online has started asking you for money. There will always be that small voice that will tell you to be careful, listen to it.
Tip number 5 don’t trust phone calls, just because someone sounds like American or British, or whatever accent they have, these days there are apps and equipment, and software that people are using to alter voices and accents, so again, it comes down to meeting them in person or at least have a live video call, and remember to make them do random things when you are on video call just to make sure you are not talking to a recording.
Let me give you an idea of how are a real online relationship should go, you meet and start talking, within the first week of meeting you should see each other on skype, and then from there you should plan how many times a week you gonna be skyping and then from there since you have established that both of you are real people, then you can decide how you wanna do things moving forward.
If Its Visa Fees, The Embassy Will Inform You What Is Required And What It Will Cost
There should be no pressure to send money to each other, you can send each other love notes and cards but not money. That being said, there are instances where you might start the visa process and at that time you might have to put your finances together in order to pay for the process, but that is straightforward because the embassy will inform you about the cost if you would like to learn about the K1 visa process please read this article that I did just recently about the process.
Before I conclude this article I would like to say that, If you are a victim of this crime, don’t be ashamed and please seek some counseling if you need to, I was reading just recently about a man who took his own life after he lost everything he owned to a romance scam, now I understand the loss and the pain and the shame but nothing is worth losing your life over.
Money, wealth, property, those are just things but there is one thing that is very precious and once lost can never be brought back and that is your life, seek help and remember it’s not because you are stupid, its because you’ve been manipulated, emotionally abused, lied to and conned. Also, remember that these people are experts at what they do you just happened to be the unlucky one.
If you would like to get more tips on how to avoid these kinds of scams, I also have another article that gives you basic tips, and I think you might find it useful and helpful, its called how to spot a scammer, I give you some tips that are crucial for safe online dating. please check it out here
Romance scams are increasing especially now that more and more people are opting to use dating sites to find love, the vulnerable people especially those who are over 40 are at risk and especially the lonely people who have perhaps lost their spouse maybe by, passing away or by divorce, it’s my advice that you be very careful.
Just because you are chatting to someone on the computer and in privacy and safety of your home, that does not mean you are not in danger, you could’ve invited the thief right into your home and you are having a lovely conversation with them on your computer with all the doors locked.
well, I have come to the end of this article, I hope you have found it helpful and I also hope that you will take the necessary safety measures while searching for love online. I do wish you success in your quest to find love and happiness. please leave me a comment about this article and your thoughts.
And if you would like to make me smile, please share this article on your social media.
Thank you for your time