Fraud recovery experts have revealed the dating app red flags that could mean you are being scammed – from dodgy spelling to poorly cropped photos. The rise of online matchmaking services such as Tinder and Bumble has helped countless couples find love through their phone, but they are also commonly used by scammers.
But being on guard for a handful of early warning signs can help would-be daters filter who is real and who is a potential catfish.Chloe Roche, fraud team leader, from leading fraud recovery experts CEL Solicitors said: “There are more ways than ever before to find love, thanks to technology and the creation of applications such as Tinder.
“However, the flip side is that it has given scammers more ways to try to con people out of money. Fraudsters often use fake profiles to build a connection with unsuspecting targets, and their malevolent intentions may only be discovered when it is already too late.
“Thankfully, scammers often aren’t as clever as they think they are and there are a number of common mistakes they make that should set alarm bells ringing immediately. Keep a close eye out for red flags such as silly spelling mistakes, poor quality photos that may just be a screenshot, or if a photo has been cropped or edited badly.
“It’s often a numbers game for scammers and they will be juggling many different potential victims at once, so this can make them a little careless with things such as using realistic photos or maintaining a genuine conversation. It’s also important to be on guard for conversations that turn towards money, and you should never send money to someone you don’t know and trust in real life.”
With an estimated 75 million users across the world, including some 5 million in the UK, Tinder is the most popular dating app on the market. Users are presented with profiles from other singletons and swipe right if they are interested, and if both users indicate they are interested then a match occurs.
However, it’s a popular method for scammers preying on would-be targets, as it can be easy to set up a fake profile using someone else’s photos and identity. The Tinder Swindler, a new true crime documentary on Netflix, has brought the issue into the headlines once again as it tells the tale of an alleged fraudster who used the app to find targets.
Simon Leveiv, 31, was accused of posing as a glamorous millionaire to ensnare his victims, and reports suggest he was able to steal an estimated $10 million. CEL Solicitors is one of the leading fraud recovery law firms in the UK and works closely with clients who fell victim to romance scams.
Chloe added: “We have seen clients lose large sums of money to online tricksters, but there is also a human cost where victims lose their ability to trust others because of the scams. Millions of people use online dating without any problems at all and they can be a really useful way to meet a potential match.
“But there are always a few bad apples who can ruin it for everyone else, and it’s vital to be on guard until you know you can trust the other person.”