When people scroll on their social media apps and dating profiles, they are usually looking to befriend someone and potentially fall in love. However, scammers know that there are people looking to meet their significant other online and want to take advantage of their bank accounts. They pretend to fall in love with their victims and gain their trust just to trick them out of their hard-earned money. This is why this is important to know how to tell if someone is scamming you online.
How to Tell if Someone is Scamming You Online
They Won’t Video Chat With You or Meet You in Person
Romance scammers don’t want you to see that the face in their photo doesn’t match the photo you’re used to. They want you to think that the person in the photo is the person who is talking to you. However, the reality is that you’re talking to someone who is not in the photo. Because of this, they will come up with every lie and excuse that they can as to why they can’t video chat with you or meet you in person.
There are many excuses that romance scammers come up with. Some excuses include a slow signal, no Wi-Fi, no money to go fly out to see you, their job won’t let them see you, and more. If you continue to bug them about wanting to video chat with them, chances are they will come up with a way to fake a video chat. However, it’s easy to tell that it’s fake since it will be very laggy and their voice won’t match their lip movements.
They Keep Asking You For Money For Emergency Reasons
Scammers ask for money on the Internet, but no one else will if they aren’t catfish. Scammers will come up with any excuse they can to get their hands on your money.
While some excuses are just as innocent as needing some groceries, we have seen emergency excuses that range from their life being on the line, needing to go back home, needing a cell phone, or needing help with their business. No matter what the excuse is, never send anyone that you met on the Internet money because if they ask for money they are definitely a scammer. If you have given someone money, report it to the FTC.
They Claim That They Work At An Oil Rig or Military
Most romance scammers claim to be in the military or work on an oil rig. These careers give them an excuse as to why they can’t see their victims as often since they are deployed and live overseas. They also claim that due to their career choices, they can’t video chat them due to not having any signal where they are stationed.
When they need money, they often use these careers as an excuse, claiming that they need money to eat, get sent home, or pay for a weapon. If someone you are talking to claims that their career choice is the reason for not video chatting with you, not seeing you, or for needing money, then they are most likely a romance scammer.
They Keep Asking You For Unusual Methods of Payment
Scammers ask for gift cards and Bitcoin since they are untraceable methods of payment. This means that if a victim even tried to get their money back, they would most likely not be able to since it would be hard to trace the money back to them. Scammers can then take the gift card they receive and sell it for 80% of the profits.
For example, if a scammer received $1,000 from gift cards they can sell the gift card for $800 on third-party websites. With Bitcoin, they can continue to invest in their victim’s money to earn a profit. They could also choose to make a withdrawal on their victim’s money and keep the money for themselves.
They Are Moving the Relationship Way Too Fast!
Scammers will tell you sweet words in order for you to fall in love with them quicker. They usually copy and paste phrases from the scammer’s playbook, which is a list of romantic phrases that scammers can copy and paste into their messages. With these messages, it’s easy to believe that a scammer is really interested in everything about you. However, they are saying all of these things to gain your trust faster so that they can get their hands on your money.
If someone claims to have everything in common with you, then chances are they are just trying to make you fall for them quicker. Be aware of someone who has very diverse interests, such as liking rock and roll while also liking classical music. If the relationship is going way too fast, don’t be afraid to slow it down so that you can make sure you are dating the right person.
How to Avoid Online Scams
- Don’t give money to someone on the Internet that you’ve never met in person.
- Don’t give out your personal information to someone that you are talking to online.
- If someone is moving the relationship super fast, be cautious by slowing the relationship down.
- Don’t get too serious with someone without at least video chatting with them or meeting them in person first.
- If they have a job overseas, this is a huge red flag that they might be a romance scammer since they usually use this as an excuse to not see you or video chat with you.
- If someone is randomly contacting you out-of-the-blue on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter this usually means they are a romance scammer.
- Report any scam that you’ve been a part of to the FTC, IC3, and FBI.
Social Catfish is Here to Help You!
At Social Catfish, we want to help you verify the identities of those who might seem suspicious to you. If you have their name, email address, phone number, social media username, or image, you can reverse search and see who the suspected person was that you’ve been in contact with if you think you’ve been a victim of online scams.