This Valentine’s Day, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission is warning the online dating community to watch out for any love interest that asks for money.
Last year, 2,620 Australians reported losing almost million to dating and romance scams to the ACCC.“Romance scams continue to cause significant emotional and financial harm to the community.
“Social media has overtaken online dating sites as the most common way for dating and romance scammers to contact potential victims,” ACCC deputy chair Delia Rickard said.
“Valentine’s Day is just around the corner and while it’s a happy day for many, for some it can be quite lonely and isolating.
While email still remains the primary contact method for scam artists online, losses through social media tripled to $9.5 million last year.
The massive losses appear to be only the tip of the iceberg with the Australian Bureau of Statistics survey last year estimating the total amount lost to personal fraud to be closer to $3 billion.
This is why disrupting relationship scams continues to be a priority for the ACCC,” Ms Rickard said.