Along with the rise in dating website use, there comes a rise in online dating scams. Scammers create fake profiles, build relationships with individuals through the dating site, and then attempt to steal their money and disappear.
You can spot a con artist quickly by recognizing a few red flags: They might propose chatting offline or profess their feelings for you before getting to know you. They may offer to visit if you can help cover travel costs using gift cards or money transfers, then cancel those plans to visit because of a phony reason such as their “wallet was stolen.”
Be very careful what you share with people you don’t know! You can report online dating scams to the site you are using, the Federal Trade Commission, the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center, and your state’s Attorney General. Be a fraud fighter! If you can spot a scam, you can stop a scam.
Visit the AARP Fraud Watch Network at www.aarp.org/fraudwatchnetwork or call AARP Fraud Watch Helpline at 1-877-908-3360 and speak to a volunteer specially trained in spotting scams.