Online dating signups surge from New Years through Valentine's Day, and that means an uptick in romance scams as well.
The Better Business Bureau tracks reported scams, but millions go unreported. A new study by the BBB estimates victims have lost over a billion dollars collectively.
Signs of a romance scammer include taking conversations off of the original dating sites as soon as possible, isolating victims to strengthen emotional bonds, and making up excuses for not meeting in person. Unfortunately, 20-30% of these victims are then scammed a second time, becoming unwitting "money mules" for scammers. This allows criminals to launder money through their victims, and in many cases the victims can be criminally charged.
Learn more or report a scam here.