Online Dating Scams Statistics
You may be wondering about the most up-to-date online dating scams statistics. The answer, which we will explore below, is sadly in the millions of dollars. Since dating technology has grown into a $2 billion dollar industry, dating scams have become an unfortunate part of the equation.
Dating schemes and scams can range from relatively mild or annoying messages- which users hardly give a second glance- to much more serious problems which can leave a dater’s heart broken, their trust in shambles, or even financial ruin.
At Social Catfish, we know the devastating effects that a dating scam can have on honest people who don’t deserve mistreatment. This is only compounded now that financial loss is synonymous with a scammer’s agenda.
Part of our mission is to educate daters on key steps they can take to avoid dating scams. For those who have already been caught in the web of a Catfish and have lost time, energy, or thousands of dollars being scammed or schemed against, it can be reassuring to discover that they are not alone.
The following are up to date dating scam statistics: As always, a mathematical equation or statistic should not make or break a decision to online date. Utilize tools to avoid being one of those scammed by using Google or our search engines to safely look up online connections and find reassurance that users are who they say they are.
According to the Australian based site, Scam Watch, dating scams have accounted for a gross loss of almost 13 MILLION dollars in 2017 alone (through October 2017) via 2,516 reports.
Its important to remember is that the twelve million only refers to REPORTED scams. There are many daters who – out of embarrassment or simply not knowing who to tell or where to turn- don’t report the scams they experience.
Daters who are catfished are often so caught off guard by the personal element of their experience (i.e., connecting with someone who ultimately did not exist as the person they claimed) that their attention and focus goes into healing the emotional wound, rather than the potential financial one.
It is encouraging that dating companies and public education is making a notable decrease in dating scams. While 13 million is not a small figure, it is far less than Scam Watch’s dating and romance scam total’s from 2016, which totaled $25,480,351 per 4,109 reports.
While the total loss from each report can vary drastically, this would make the average loss per person $6,201. Compared to 2017, this means that not only have less financial dating scam losses have decreased from $6,201 to $5,157 per person. A difference of 1k per averaged report.
According to the Federal Trade Commission, in 2013 and 2014, romance scams doubled during those years. The FTC totals for the last 6 months of 2014 rose to a high of $82 million in online dating fraud.
The FTC takes this grand total seriously enough that they have an entire consumer page devoted to tips which can helps users avoid online romance scams. The FTC list comprises some of their most commonly seen scams.
Their recommendations include not to wire money to cover:
- medical emergencies
- hotel bills
- hospital bills for a child or other relative
- visas or other official documents
- losses from a temporary financial setback
In addition to public education on the subject, which we pride ourselves in at Social Catfish, knowing that it is okay to report financial dating scams is important. The more those who are scammed report their experience, the more accurate reporting will be in future.
While being catfished can become avoidable with training and a keen eye, many do not realize this until they have already had a negative experience online. It is often better to spend time exploring free options in Google to search out matches and avoid the pitfalls of scams, or even spend a few dollars for a comprehensive online algorithm based catfish search, than lose resources to a scammer. Just like falling off a bike once doesn’t mean you should never ride again, online dating scams should not prevent one from enjoying all the internet has to offer.