Florida Romance Scams on The Rise | #datingscams | #lovescams

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According to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), romance scams cost Americans $1.14 billion in 2023.

In Florida, it cost Floridians more than $85 million alone in 2022.

Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody says her office has seen an uptick of reports on fraudsters using online-dating platforms and social media to connect with potential partners.

The AG says the red flags come in many forms. For example, the perpetrators will try to get serious very quickly by convincing the person that they’re in love. Followed by some fake type of health issue or family emergency when in reality it’s a ploy to get money.

AG Moody also says the scammers will create fake profiles on online dating sites using stolen photos and texts from real accounts.

Romance scammers will share fake stories about having a tough time with their finances in order to steal your information and money.

The AG’s office says here are some tips on how to avoid d being a victim.

Be skeptical of anyone professing love or devotion surprisingly fast, as this may be a tactic to manipulate emotions and gain trust. Know that legitimate users of online dating platforms typically have verified accounts with photos and detailed profiles;

Ask detailed questions and pay attention to see if answers seem suspicious or contradict prior information. Only agree to meet up with a love interest in public locations for safety;

Be cautious chatting to anyone claiming to be overseas on business, especially if the person consistently avoids face-to-face meetings or video calls; and

Never send money to strangers.

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