Other things to pay attention to even on legitimate dating sites — let’s face it, scammers are everywhere — include the following: If they supposedly come from an English-speaking nation, be on the lookout for awful spelling and grammar.Not everyone looking for love online has the soul and finesse of William Shakespeare — and there’s certainly nothing wrong with not being a native English speaker — but scammers often cross borders electronically in search of new victims, and so truly terrible grammar is a red flag. Native English speakers have a natural cadence when they speak and write that isn’t easily mimicked.
The strategies these fraudsters use are highly sophisticated.” Whitty, whose field is cyberpsychology, has acquired much experience working with victims of romance frauds.
In her view, victims experience double pressure: They blame themselves, and their friends and relatives blame them as well.
Computers and servers in these virtual dating agencies filter the millions of people in their databases to find your closest match based on various criteria.
You can scroll through profiles of people near you on your smartphone and send them a flirty text copied from a Google search, avoiding the effort and anxiety of thinking of what you would like to say to your match.
The services claim to offer legitimate hookups, but they are either severely underpopulated or awash with scammers and bots.
Tip: Look out for sign-up questionnaires that are light on personal details but heavy on financial info.
If you post a lot of pictures and haven’t updated your privacy settings, it’s easy for cybercriminals to make some educated guesses about how best to approach you.
Tip: If you receive such a claim, even if you’d really like to meet someone new, dismiss the conversation and don’t add that person as a friend.
In those cases, curiosity is only natural, but stay vigilant — instead of romance, such e-cards may lead to malware, real money loss, or both.
Of course, installing a reliable Internet security suite such as Kaspersky Internet Security will protect you from malware and malicious links, but it will not protect you from a broken heart, unfortunately.
Be suspicious if something seems “off” about the tone or pacing.