The prospect of finding love online seems enticing. After the pandemic, many people prefer to explore dating sites to find potential love interests. However, with the substantial rise in the popularity of online dating, crimes on dating sites have also increased. It is given that people from all generations try dating sites to find love these days. But due to this increase in the use of dating sites, cybercriminals and scammers have started to flock to these websites.
ExpressVPN’s guide reveals that online love scams have significantly increased in recent years. With millions of users accessing online dating sites, it becomes difficult for users to separate fake profiles from real accounts. This is why users need to be more aware of the dangers of online dating to protect themselves against scammers.
What Are Dating Scams
Online dating scams are a way for cybercriminals to lure in victims on dating sites so that they can get money or other gains for them. Usually, such criminals try to trap victims by making them emotionally invested in their online relationships. Eventually, they can ask their victims for monetary gains under the ruse of an emergency. Financial scams are the most common scams on dating sites. However, there have been cases of catfishing, extortion, and blackmail as well.
Red Flags to Look Out for on Dating Sites
Most people who are heavily involved in the online dating culture know about the dangers of online dating apps. However, older generations are more prone to falling for such traps as they do not have very good knowledge of technology. Usually, such people are targeted heavily by cybercriminals as they are more likely to benefit from them. Here are six red flags that users should look for if they use online dating sites.
- The person you have been talking to for quite some time avoids meeting you. Even if you plan a meeting, they cancel due to an emergency.
- Are they also reluctant to share their social media or video chat with you? If so, chances are they are not who they claim to be, and you could be a victim of catfishing.
- If someone asks for your personal information immediately, you should block them instantly. Private information like phone numbers or email addresses can leave you vulnerable to data breaches.
- If someone has a perfect profile, it could be a too-good-to-be-true situation. If you encounter an ideal profile, and the person does not have a flaw at all, even when you are talking to them, chances are a group of scammers are operating the account. This usually works on the emotionally vulnerable as they get easily attached to someone. After all, the idea of a fairy tale love is enticing.
- Are you the only one answering questions? Well, if the other person evades all questions and does not want to indulge any information related to them, you need to be wary. Even though no one will answer invasive questions, unwillingness to share anything is a definite red flag.
- Are they not respecting your boundaries? If someone does not respect your boundaries and keeps pushing you to share personal information, you must immediately block them. Further, do not meet someone during the initial phases of a conversation. Also, avoid sending explicit images to people, as it can lead to extortion.
In Conclusion, Be Aware of Scams
There is a huge variety of scams that happen on online dating sites, and people need to be made aware of these scams. More often than not, we hear cases of people falling victim to online dating scams. Users need to be vigilant on such sites so that they can recognize the red flags.
Dating scams are not restricted to financial scams only; there have also been cases of extortion and robbing. The responsibility to be aware of these dangers falls on the users that are active on such sites so that they can protect themselves.