Tips for Avoiding Online Dating Scams

Courtesy of the American Bankers Association

The American Bankers Association Foundation, in collaboration with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC),is warning consumers about growing threat of online dating scams. According to the FBI, over $220 million was lost in 2016 to online romance scam artists.

Social media networks and dating websites have become increasingly popular tools for meeting and communicating. Unfortunately, fraudsters have capitalized on this trend and often create fake profiles to lure in victims, establish romantic relationships and eventually, extort money. Older Americans in particular have been targeted by this type of scam.

The infographic to the right identifies common signs of an online dating scam, and offers consumers advice on how to avoid falling victim. If you’re concerned that you or a loved one are being scammed, the ABA Foundation and FTC recommend taking the following precautions:

  • Slow down – and talk to someone you trust. Don’t let a scammer rush you.
  • Never wire money, put money on a gift or cash reload card, or send cash to an online love interest. You won’t get it back.
  • Contact your bank right away if you think you’ve sent money to a scammer.
  • Report your experience to: