Confessions of a dating fraudster
A dating fraudster has revealed how they were able to take advantage of people looking for love online by creating fake accounts, obtaining information from social media profiles and building trust.
The fraudster, previously involved in deceiving people online, revealed that they would create fake accounts with social media platforms so that their details matched and could be searched. By appearing to be a real person their fake persona could be corroborated by prospective partners searching their background and believe them to be genuine.
The fraudster yesterday said
“People like to live in fairy tales to say it won’t happen to me. I make sure all my conversations are bespoke. I will show insecurity myself about trusting people and this helps allude to them that I’m genuine.”
The fraudster will also utilise as many accessible online research tools to explore people’s information for their own personal gain or sell onwards. The fraudster elaborated and explained:
“I use various online directories to find out about the person. Once I have enough, I use it to milk everything I can using their details or sell them on to other fraudsters via the dark web”
When asked how people could check if a person is real. The romance fraudster offered advice for others searching for a relationship. They told us that after you see a picture of them:
“Ask for them to send you another photo of themselves posing with their thumbs up or waving. It’s like a form of 2 factor authentication and makes it hard to do if it’s not an original picture”
Romance fraud happens when a person thinks they have met the perfect partner through an online dating website, app, or through social media, but in fact a fraudster out to gain the person’s trust and ask for money or enough personal information to steal the victim’s identity.
Action Fraud is warning the public to spot the signs of romance fraud ahead of Valentine’s Day:
- Don’t rush into an online relationship – get to know the person, not the profile and ask plenty of questions.
- Analyse their profile and check the person is genuine by putting their name, profile pictures or any repeatedly used phrases and the term ‘dating scam’ into your search engine.
- Talk to your friends and family about your dating choices. Be wary of anyone who tells you not to tell others about them.
- Evade scammers by never sending money to, or sharing your bank details with, someone you’ve met online, no matter what reason they give or how long you've been speaking to them.
- Stay on the dating site messenger service until you’re confident the person is who they say they are. If you do decide to meet in person, make sure the first meeting is in a public place and let someone else know where you’re going to be.
ActionFraud is the UK’s national fraud and cyber crime reporting centre.
We provide a central point of contact for information about fraud and cyber crime.
The easiest way to report fraud and cyber crime is by using our online reporting tool.Report
Latest News from
260 reports of coronavirus-related TV Licensing emails so far this month28/05/2020 16:38:00
So far this month, we have seen 260 reports about a coronavirus-related TV Licensing scam.
How to protect yourself if you think you've been affected by the EasyJet cyber breach20/05/2020 14:43:00
Advice and guidance if you think you have been affected.
Man pleads guilty to sending Covid-19 scam text messages following DCPCU investigation19/05/2020 13:20:00
Intelligence work by the DCPCU and Action Fraud identified that the suspect was involved in sending large-scale ‘smishing’ text message campaigns.
Cyber experts shine light on online scams as British public flag over 160,000 suspect emails07/05/2020 14:15:00
In just over two weeks, the public has passed on more than 160,000 suspect emails.
Animal lovers looking for pets in lockdown defrauded of nearly £300,000 in two months06/05/2020 10:20:00
Criminals continue to take advantage of the coronavirus pandemic to commit fraud, as a scam involving the purchase of pets, such as puppies and kittens, continues to be reported to Action Fraud.
Fraudsters send victims own passwords in sextortion scam24/04/2020 16:33:00
Over 9,000 reports received so far in April.
Businesses Against Scams: Protecting businesses from COVID-19 scams24/04/2020 12:38:00
'Businesses Against Scams' launched by the National Trading Standards.
Public embraces email reporting service created after spike in coronavirus-related scams23/04/2020 13:20:00
As part of the Cyber Aware campaign, the NCSC successfully launched its suspicious email reporting service (SERS), resulting dozens of malicious web campaigns shut down in its first day after spike in coronavirus phishing scams.