New Mexicans robbed blind of millions in online dating scams | #datingscams | #lovescams

A recent analysis of FBI data shows that New Mexicans got swindled big time in 2022 from online dating scams, with stats showing the state saw a massive increase from the 2021 numbers.

The online investigative service Social Catfish, which compiled the figures, reported that nationwide, Americans were swindled out of $1.3 billion due to online dating scams, a 138 percent jump.

The report notes that it is “by far the largest this country has ever seen. Despite increased government warnings, pop culture shows like The Tinder Swindler — which aired last year on Netflix — and increased public awareness, romance scams continue to leave an unprecedented number of Americans broke and heartbroken.” 

New Mexico ranked 25th-highest for money lost from romance scams last year, totaling $7.2 million with 128 victims, a big jump from the state formerly being ranked 42nd in 2021. 

Residents of the Land of Enchantment were ranked third for the most money lost per victim, totaling an average of $57,001.00 each. 

It also had the second-highest jump year over year at 268.7 percent, only being beaten by the state of Arkansas, which saw a mind-boggling 398.1 increase. 

“One way to recognize that you are dealing with a romance scammer is not only if they ask you for money, but what form of payment they request.  Nearly 35% of all money lost to romance scams in 2022 were sent in using cryptocurrency. However, the most common form of payment requested by scammers is gift cards.”

According to the report, the number of reported losses was 34 percent from cryptocurrencies, 27 percent from bank wire transfers, seven percent from gift cards, three percent from payment apps, and 28 percent from all other forms of currency transfers. 

A Social Catfish poll showed 75 percent of victims are college educated, 84 percent are middle-class or low-income, 10 percent of victims losing more than $100,000, and four percent losing more than $200,000.

Read more about the Social Catfish report and how you can avoid scams here. 

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