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Swipe right for $28.6m in scams

By Cameron Micallef · February 10 2020
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egg

Save

Swipe right for $28.6m in scams

By Cameron Micallef
February 10 2020
Reading:
egg
Tinder app

Swipe right for $28.6m in scams

author image
By Cameron Micallef · February 10 2020
Reading:
egg
Tinder app

With Valentine’s Day fast approaching, Aussies looking for love have been given a timely reminder that one in five scams is related to dating.

According to the ACCC, there were almost 4,000 dating and romance scams in 2019, with losses of more than $28.6 million, and these numbers will be just the tip of the iceberg. Around 37.5 per cent of reports resulted in a loss, with an average loss of more than $19,000.

“We’ve seen an increase in reports from people who did not originally seek an online relationship but have been caught up in a dating and romance scam,” ACCC deputy chair Delia Rickard said.

“Romance scams are particularly devastating because not only are there financial losses, but there is also an emotional toll for the victim, which can have lasting psychological impacts on people.”

The ACCC warned that scammers try to make their victims fall in love with a persona they have created and quickly profess their love for the victim.

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They will normally weave complicated stories about why they can’t meet in person and ask the victim to send money or provide financial aid so they can travel to meet them.

If the person sends money, the scammer will ask for more, and if they don’t, the scammer may become aggressive or use guilt to manipulate their victim.

“If you’re interacting with someone online, it’s important to be alert and consider the possibility that the approach may be a scam,” Ms Rickard said.

“Don’t give out personal information, including your financial details, to anybody you haven’t met in person, no matter who they say they are, and don’t share intimate photos or use webcams in an intimate setting.”

A new trend emerging in 2019 was scammers increasingly turning to apps like Google Hangouts, or online games such as Words with Friends and Scrabble, to con their victims.

“No longer are dating websites the only contact method for dating and romance scams, with an increasing number of reports coming from these emerging websites and apps,” Ms Rickard concluded.

Swipe right for $28.6m in scams
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About the author

Cameron is a journalist for Momentum Media's nestegg and Smart Property Investment. He enjoys giving Aussies practical financial tips and tricks to help grow their wealth and achieve financial independence. As a self-confessed finance nerd, Cameron enjoys chatting with industry experts and commentators to leverage their insights to grow your portfolio.

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About the author

Cameron is a journalist for Momentum Media's nestegg and Smart Property Investment. He enjoys giving Aussies practical financial tips and tricks to help grow their wealth and achieve financial independence. As a self-confessed finance nerd, Cameron enjoys chatting with industry experts and commentators to leverage their insights to grow your portfolio.

Join The Nest Egg community

We Translate Complicated Financial Jargon Into Easy-To-Understand Information For Australians

Your email address will be shared with nestegg and subject to our Privacy Policy

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