Halton police are warning residents to be wary of an online dating scene
following an increase in the number of people falling victim to what is dubbed as the Dating and Romance Scam. The scam involves fraudsters setting up fake profiles on legitimate dating websites or creating their own romance websites in order to lure potential victims.
Police said the suspects chat on line and soon claim to have a very sick family member (usually in another country) and will ask the victim to send money. In other cases, the other cases the individual will send flowers or small gifts and then begin talking about a large amount of money they need to transfer out of the country. The fraudster closes the account or website and disappears after collecting the victim's money.
Police remind residents
To never send money or give credit card or online account details to anyone
To never give out any personal information in an email or when they are chatting online.
To use only legitimate and reputable dating websites
To be suspicious if someone they've met through online dating asks for money
If they suspect they are being targeted, to stop all communication and call the police
To not feel embarrassed or ashamed if they have fallen victim
If they suspect a friend or family member is being preyed upon, contact local police