HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — A new Netflix documentary tells the story of “The Tinder Swindler,” a con artist working online dating apps and bilking women out of millions of dollars. Dating scams are happening here in Connecticut too.
Connecticut Attorney General William Tong said they have had several complaints and investigated numerous scammers.
“It’s real and it’s heartbreaking and it’s happening to people right here in Connecticut,” Tong said.
It happened to a woman on Bumble in the state.
“We have a woman we heard from who lost over $100,000. Another man was talking to somebody he thought was in Dubai and asked for several thousand dollars.”
Tong said these con artists are at the top of their game and picking the most vulnerable of victims.
“They are looking for people based on what they find on the internet, social media. Maybe you have lost somebody or just broke up with somebody.”
Tong said scammers have swindled Americans out of $1.3 billion in the last five years and that number is probably much higher.
“People probably don’t report. They’re probably embarrassed that they got taken for 5, 10, $50,000 or more.”
Tong said now is one of the most vulnerable times for people on dating apps. He said even before you swipe to make a match, check them out thoroughly.
“Make sure you do more than a cursory search on the internet. Understand who they are, where they live, what they do for a living,” Tong said.
Beware of the many different scams the con artists use, including an urgent plea for help.
Keep in mind, unless you have met them face to face on an actual date, they do not even have to be in the United States to pull off the swindle.