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Over-50s are the main victims of internet dating fraud

Wednesday 16 January 2013

People over the age of 50 are most likely to be the targets of dating site-based cyber criminals, RTL news reports on Wednesday.

A special police website set up to help victims of on and off-line fraud reports up to 90% of victims are older than 50. Women make up the bulk of the victims, especially those who are ‘rather desperate’, the broadcaster said.

Criminals target women seeking a new relationship by putting together photos and a profile using information gleaned from social media sites such as Facebook. Once a prospective victim has been hooked, they are asked for cash. This often first occurs following a cancelled visit. The fraudster then asks for larger and larger sums.

The police estimate dating site fraudsters netted at least €8m last year. ‘But this is likely to be the tip of the iceberg because many victims are too embarrassed to say they have been conned,’ the police say.

People from all walks of life have fallen victim to dating fraud. In one case, an accountant killed himself after handing over €165,000 to a woman who did not exist, RTL said.

Have you been a victim? Share your experiences using the comment form below.

© DutchNews.nl

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Readers' comments (3)

More awareness needs to be created to educate people about dating fraud. Maybe putting up posters on buses and trains?

By ufo | January 16, 2013 2:49 PM

I started communicating with this "romantic" guy we emailed for a month as he was in Malasia on "oil & gas business" then a part of the rig broke down and would cost 20K to fix,..after sending me depressing emails he finally "reluctantly" asked me for money,..ofcourse I was on to him inmediatly,..and said no,..then he kept lowering the amount right down to 500..afterwich he send me the most nastiest emails I ever received,...Now I can spot them a mile away

By Christina | January 17, 2013 4:34 PM

Take this as a tip:

They build up a relationship online until you cannot think about anyone else.. then you become emotionally involved. Next step is to let you know they have no money for internet costs, so you send via Western Union & more - ouch!

It's a game based on emotions, emotions can override logic, be very careful, I know a lot about internet scams, it works the same way as advertising, some people will spend months to get your money, be warned!

(Even web cam is no guarantee, some people are good at acting and fooling others, try to keep it real & NEVER send money to a person you have never met, no matter what!!)

By The visitor | January 17, 2013 10:40 PM

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