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Do you suspect you’re a victim OurTime dating scams? Maybe you want to join the site, but wonder if scammers make it too risky? Perhaps you’ve lent money to someone you haven’t met in person and want to determine if they’re a con artist. The OurTime dating service provides matches and dating for adults age 50+.
Though OurTime caters to people who have just turned 50, it is often old seniors who feel ‘aged out’ from dating apps like Tinder, Bumble, or PlentyofFish. According to the site, OurTime “honors the freedom, wisdom and appreciation for life that only comes with time.” What scammers and con artist hear is that the 50+ market is a prime target for their crimes. Not only are daters age 50+ more financially secure, they might be lonely and respond well to flattery.
Join us as we explore the scams found on Our Time, how you can protect yourself, and what to do if you think you’ve been victimized online.
SCAM #1: Fake Profile
The fake profile exists for a con- the question is which type of con. Sometimes fake profiles are bots, which want to direct traffic away from OurTime to a paid service or site. Fake profiles can also be catfish, or daters trying to trick you into thinking they’re someone else for fun and to conceal their identity. More commonly, fake profiles are foreign scammers who will act as if they’ve fallen madly in love with you after a few messages or even just from reading your profile.
They will immediately try and get you off the site, saying they’re sure you’re the ‘one’. They will say they are cancelling their account and want to use email or outside messaging services instead. Why do they do this? As their profile is likely to be discovered as a fake by the service. They might ask you to delete your account to focus on them or block you. That way you’ll be unaware of how much time they spend on the site looking for other victims.
What to do: If you’re still on the service and suspect you are corresponding with a fake profile, report it to OurTime and block the profile in question.
SCAM #2: In Search of Cash
This is often step 2 for those who have fake profiles. Step 1 is luring you in and establishing contact. Once that has happened, they will say whatever it takes to get you to trust them. Their goal all along is money. Red flags to look for: They declare extreme attachment to you very quickly, without ever meeting. They claim to travel a lot, usually for work, and be very successful. They list a multitude of hobbies meant to appeal to many personality types, as you aren’t their only victim. While they’re pursuing you, they are also pursuing other people.
Whomever takes the bait will be focused on and asked for cash/money wire, to help them during an emergency, to prevent dire straits, or as a temporary loan. If you worry you’re dealing with a scammer or others think you might be, conduct a comprehensive online search through Social Catfish. Social Catfish is reverse searching which lets you scour the internet through comprehensive algorithm-based searches. The site looks through all major search engines and social media accounts. This will let you background check the person you’ve been talking with through only their email address, name, username, phone number, social media accounts, and more.
What to do: Stop contact with the individual. Forget about the compliments they’ve given you. If you are involved with a scammer and confront them, without ever having given cash, they will likely block you. If you have already given them funds, review the FTC’s plan of action: https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/blog/2018/02/has-online-love-interest-asked-you-money
SCAM #3 The Dating Service Itself
Billing problems abound on OurTime. If you signed up for a paid membership, which is really the only way to use the site, review ALL information on how to cancel. This is important, as if you do not properly cancel in advance of your billing date, your membership will be renewed and your accounts charged. Multiple OurTime users complain that their membership was not properly cancelled and that they were incorrectly billed. This left them feeling ‘scammed’ by the dating service, and their pleas for a bank credit were not granted or, at times, their messages even responded to.
What to do: First, contact OurTime (https://peoplemedia.custhelp.com/app/ask/theme/ourtimev6/src/www.ourtime.com_v3_help_iframehelper/pmsite/41) and explain your situation. If that doesn’t work, contact your bank and see if you can block the charge. If not, consider asking for a refund through Apple Store or Google Play.
If you’re currently communicating with someone and want to verify their identity, Social Catfish is an invaluable tool. Even if you want to date someone local, use Social Catfish’s web-based tools to verify daters are whom they claim to be.