New stats have revealed that Dating Fraud has risen 26% in the last year. The report suggests that the average victim of romance fraud loses over £10,000. The reported losses reported by the victims between August 2019 and August 2020 total a huge £66,335,239.
The Police refer to the crime as a sophisticated crime with up to 70 per cent of it originating from overseas, often with organised teams of people researching potential victims. The Police and other organisations are running a campaign throughout October to help raise awareness of online dating fraud.
Lockdown has lead to increasing cases of romance fraud due to the fact that restrictions meant people could no longer meet face to face which led to many turning to online dating to form new relationships. The fraudsters used and played upon the fact that due to covid they could not meet in person due to the restrictions in place therefore providing a legitimate reason why they would be unable to meet.
The internet is without a doubt a great way to socialise, interact, meet new people and form relationships however without ensuring that your date has been verified by Safe Dates there is a huge risk of being lured into a romance scam
Police said popular platforms where victims reported first interacting with criminals committing romance fraud were Facebook, Plenty of Fish, Instagram, Tinder and Match.com.
Safe Dates completely minimises all risks of Online Dating Fraud and we would recommend that anyone looking for love online ensures their potential date is Safe Dates Verified!Learn More
Online dating is now a mainstream way of meeting new people, but many of us are unaware of the dangers we face each time we log-on. With no way of telling whether people are who they say they are, catfishing continues to grow more and more commonplace – but what is it, and how can you avoid some of the dangers of online dating?
What is catfishing?
Put simply, catfishing is the term used to describe someone who creates a fake profile and identity for themselves. This is usually done to con others into believing they truly are this new ‘person’, either to extract money or otherwise cause harm to the people they meet on the web.
Catfishers are sometimes quite detailed in their construction of these new identities, which can make it difficult to tell fact from fiction. While some simply steal a photograph or a name, others will carefully construct an alternate life story which makes them sound more ‘impressive’ or attractive than they would otherwise.
In online dating, this can be catastrophic for a victim, as it may lead them to interact with this individual in a way which they would not do if they knew who was really behind the screen. This could include sending money, intimate or suggestive photographs, or even agreeing to meet, only to be conned (or in some instances, physically harmed) in person.
Examples of catfishing
There have been several high-profile examples of catfishing, such as the event in 2016 when a man was conned into believing he was online dating the popstar Katy Perry. Such high profile examples of identity theft can also have a damaging impact upon the life of the person who has their photographs or identity stolen, such as in the case of Karen Danczuk, who had her photograph plastered across online dating profiles in 2017 and had to manage numerous attempts at contact from men who thought she had been ‘dating’ them.
How do I stay safe when online dating?
Online dating platforms are currently under no real legal pressure to keep their users safe, particularly in the area of vetting identities. This is where we come in. Safe Dates provides a trustworthy, effective service where users of online dating can have their identities verified (or check someone else’s providing they are already a member of Safe Dates), proving their trustworthiness and helping to make online dating less toxic, far safer and all in all a happier experience for online daters.
If you would like to sign up for Safe Dates please click here.
If you are already a member of Safe Dates and would like to invite a potential new date to sign up and become a Safe Dates Verified Member please click here.Learn More