Online dating scams have been rampant in the United States and abroad. Local, state, and federal authorities have safety measures in place to help US citizens.
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC), in February 2020, released that over the last five years, victims of online dating scams have reported $1.3 billion dollars in losses, with $547 million in losses reported in 2021.
Some of the means of online scammers according to the FTC include:
- Unsolicited private messages on social sites. 30% percent of final losses being reported through Instagram and Facebook.
- Susceptibility to becoming, “money mules” by sympathetically giving money or lending their to money launderers.
- Luring of romantic partners, victims into cryptocurrency scams; responsible for $139 million in romance victim scammer losses. In some cases, victims pay scammers in gift cards or other hard to trace currencies.
State Protections Against Online Romance Scams
Federal and state authorities have safe stops for United States’ consumers. One of the greatest consumer protection advocates, per state, is the Attorneys General’s (AG) office.
Beyond state’s AG’s receiving complaints on and prosecuting crimes from romance scams, state Governor’s offices and the State Revenue Departments may mobilize to prevent this type of cyber and often financial.
Federal Protections Against Online Romance Scams
USA.gov states that seven agencies work collectively to mitigate and reduce the impact online romance scammers have on United States victims. Three of them and means for victims to report the fraud are:
WKYT News in Lexington, Kentucky report on April 27th, that a Nigerian has been released from Nigerian custody into the hands of the FBI. On behalf of a Fayette County Kentucky victim, from which the alleged Nigerian online romance scammer frauded the woman out of $200,000, the scammer is being held in Kentucky to face charges. The alleged scammer claims that the true perpetrator will be revealed in court.
If you or anyone you know thinks you might have been a victim of an online romance scam, contact your local, state or federal authorities. The FBI has online romance safety tips available online.
Federal Trade Commission