When you start to realize that your love interest on the internet might not be who you thought they were, it might be hard to process this. The person that you were able to talk to everyday about anything and their pictures were all fake, just because they wanted to scam you out of your money. When this happens, we might think who can we go and talk to? There are a range of emotions that might be preventing you from getting the type of help you need. However, it is important to be able to have someone to talk to and to know how to report a scam when you figure out you’re talking to a scammer.
What Types of Scams Do People Go Through?
The scams that someone can go through vary, and while there are many scams to watch out for, there are three major scams that most people go through.
Most of the time, people get scammed out of romance scams which is when someone catfishes their victims and forms a romantic relationship with them. After a few months of building their victim’s trust, they start asking for money for various things until the victim goes bankrupt. They then block that victim and move on to the next one.
There are also phishing scams that could lead to identity theft, where scammers text or email their victims links to click on. The excuses about what these links are vary, from the scammer claiming the victim won something, or tracking a package that you didn’t receive. Once you click on the link, it sends you to a form where you need to fill out your personal or financial information to receive the promised item. However, the information is then used to the scammer’s advantage where they can commit identity fraud in your name. There is also malware that can download onto your device without you even knowing stealing the personal information that you didn’t put on the form.
One other scam to watch out for are robocall scams. This is when the scammer calls pretending to be a call center of some sort and asks if you want to purchase something or sign up for something. Once you agree to buy something or sign up for something, they ask for your personal and financial information. They can then use this information to commit identity fraud, drain your bank accounts, and apply for credit cards. A popular example of this type of scam is the IRS scam, where scammers pretend to be the IRS as they attempt to steal your information.
How to Tell if I’m Going Through a Scam
Social Catfish can help you figure out if you are going through a scam by using our reverse search platform to see who it is you’ve really been talking to. Our reverse search platform can help you find out more information about your scammer if you know just a little bit of information. All you need is their name, email address, phone number, address, social media username, or image to see who it is you’ve really been talking to.
Why Might it Be Hard to Reach Out to Someone for Help?
It might be hard to reach out to someone for help because of the feelings you might feel after going through a scam. These emotions range from shame, anxiety, depression, guilt, anger, embarrassment, fear, loss of trust in people, loss of security, and grief. Even though you might not feel like you can reach out to anyone, the facts are that your loved ones are there to help you through whatever you are going through. Most of the time, they want the best for you and want to know how to help you if you’ve been scammed. If you still don’t feel like you can reach out to them, there are plenty of people and resources you can access to make sure you get the help you deserve when you are figuring out how to report a scam.
Who Should You Talk To if You Are Being Scammed?
One important thing to realize is that you are not alone and you will not be judged if you reach out for the help you need. Here are some people you can talk to if you feel like you are being scammed.
- Therapist/Counselor: It is always important to seek professional help while healing to make sure you know how to properly cope with the emotions you are dealing with over time.
- Friends and Family: Your friends and family can give you advice and insight as to how to better help your situation.
- Law enforcement: If you can track where your money went, then the police might be able to get your money back for you.
- Financial institution: If the financial institution you sent your money through knows where you sent the money, they might be able to get it back for you.
How to Report a Scam Using These Resources
- FTC (Federal Trade Commission): With the FTC, you can report the scam you were a victim of and how it happened. Then, the FTC provides you with next steps on how to protect yourself. Finally, your report can help law enforcement with upcoming investigations through the FTC.
- FBI (Federal Bureau of Investigation)/IC3 (Internet Crime Complaint Center): You enter the details of what happened in your scam and submit it through a report to the IC3. From there, trained analysts look at your report then research the information so that they can figure out if they should forward your case to federal, state, local, or international law enforcement. Then, law enforcement reviews your case and decides what to do from there.
- National Center for Disaster Fraud: You can either report your scam to their hotline 1-866-720-5721 or submit it through their web complaint form. This complaint center specifically focuses on criminal activity relating to natural and man-made disasters, hoarding or price gouging for medical items, or fraud relating to federal financial assistance programs. However, by visiting their website, they list resources for you to visit if you’ve encountered another scam.
- SCF Seekers Facebook Group: This is Social Catfish’s exclusive Facebook group that you can join if you’ve signed up for any of our memberships. In this community, people come together to provide stories about their experiences, tips to watch out for when talking to someone online, and pictures of who their scammers said they were so that people can identify who they really are. The Social Catfish team also provides videos, articles, and tips from time to time to help our audience heal and watch out from romance scams.
Social Catfish is Here to Help When Learning How to Report a Scam!
At Social Catfish, we care about what our audience is going through. We want to do everything in our power to make sure everyone has the resources they need when figuring out the identity of their scammers. That’s why we offer reverse search platforms that allow you to find out more information on someone, as long as you have only a tiny bit of information about them. All you need is their name, email address, phone number, social media username, address, or image to see who it is you’ve really been talking to.