Dating Site Scams
Dating Site Scams – Online Dating
Catfishing – Internet Scams
Don’t become victim to social media and online dating site scams
– Know exactly who you’re talking to.
– Catfish are predators who fake their identity to befriend.
If you think you have become a victim, Get in touch with us NOW!
Online Dating Scams
With the advent of the internet age, and rapidly changing personal technology like smartphones and tablets, the way we connect and communicate has changed drastically, even in the last five years. Our social media and internet dating habits have brought with them both new possibilities and increased dangers. Social networks like Facebook and dating applications like Tinder are regularly used by unscrupulous catfish looking for victims or even just by lonely people who deceive others in order to gain some extra attention.
Catfish are predators who fake their identity to befriend, or even forge relationships with vulnerable victims in order to trick them, rob them or steal their identity.
Social networks and dating sites are preferred by catfish as these are places where people are at their most vulnerable – searching for love, or feeling they are amongst friends, sharing personal stories and details. If you believe that a person you have been in communication with is not telling the truth then it’s wise to do a little digging before exposing yourself to serious risks. Your instinct is sometimes called “nature’s insurance policy” and there is usually a reason you are asking yourself questions about this person.
Lyonswood Investigations has 34 years of gathering evidence regarding the identity of persons. Traditionally, con men would meet victims face to face but these days it typically happens online so the perpetrators have access to many more victims. Our computer forensic resources and personal record databases often enable us to show whether the person you are dealing with online actually exists.
In the past, we have investigated many catfishing and online scams. One, in particular, involved a man who not only had around four parallel relationships but had also defrauded each victim partner of tens of thousands of dollars for alleged business ventures, none of which existed. He stole jewellery and personal belongings from two victims and gave these items to the other two women. He even stole a dog from one woman! Through our investigation, we were able to put the four women in contact (with their permission), and together they sought justifiable retribution in the form of police action.
It would be a shame to terminate a potential relationship on speculation alone however so you should seek professional advice at an early stage before putting yourself or your personal information at risk. Lyonswood Investigations can often provide you with all of the evidence to make the correct, and informed decision. Contact us today for a consultation.
Single or not single, that is the question
Client feedback data obtained by dating sites has revealed that as many as 40% of people on certain sites are currently married or in long term relationships – not single as they allege. Developing and maintaining a meaningful relationship with another person is not possible unless you have clarity. An investigator will assist you to determine whether there is evidence that your potential love interest is truly single or involved in multiple relationships at once.
Be certain what they tell you is the truth.
More and more we are becoming reliant upon the internet to arrange our social schedules and develop our personal lives. Dating sites and apps have become the norm for finding love, someone who we hope is like-minded, trustworthy and caring. But this reliance upon the internet has opened up a lucrative playground for catfish predators. Criminals trawl dating sites ready to prey on those who are looking for love, ready to open up to someone, often without really knowing them.
Some victims actually end up losing their life savings and never recover. Lyonswood can help you in determining how genuine or otherwise a plea for financial assistance may be. Catfish can be patient and can spend some time communicating with a victim before they close in for the money, as they often have multiple dating site relationships happening at the one time. If just a handful of these produce results in a year, this can mean a significant annual income for the scammer, and devastating consequences for the victims. Lyonswood can work with you to prove or disprove the claims a potential suitor makes about him or herself in areas such as relationship status, business involvement, financial circumstances, occupation and property holdings.
Things to avoid doing when communicating with strangers
• Never send identifying details like your full name, address, date of birth, employment information or passport / drivers’ license details even if the other person has sent you his or her details.
• Avoid sending your photo or those of your family members. This is difficult in the social media era but remember that photos you display online can be used by a catfish to set up bogus accounts meaning people may one day think you are a catfish.
• Do not send sexually explicit photos or trust anyone who wants you to become involved in cybersex. Your image is liable to end up on the black market and you will unwittingly become a porn star.
• Do not discuss your movements or when you will be overseas or absent from your home.
• Don’t discuss your financial circumstances.
• By no means provide bank account / credit card details or passwords / security codes of credit cards.
• Do not click on links or attachments the other person sends you.
If you have already done anything you should not have then contact us urgently as time may be of the essence.
Why should you investigate the circumstances of a potential partner?
Our experience puts us in a position to give considered advice in this area. It’s better to be sure than sorry. Investigating online identities is generally inexpensive as we simply concentrate on trying to show that at least one thing the subject person has said about him or herself is not true. Sometimes this is quite straightforward.
If we do find one lie then we can be certain there will be others – deception is never isolated and is always part of a pattern of behaviour. To guess and not know the truth can be very costly if you are dealing with a scammer or catfish.
Common ploys used by sexual and financial predators:
• Often these people will make themselves as attractive to you as they can. They will look at your profile and design theirs to inveigle their way into your life. Be careful of persons who allege they are professionals on high incomes or those who make excuses as to why they can’t meet you.
• Photos used by catfish are often from stock photographic websites elsewhere or of other persons they have already made their victims. The photos are usually of attractive, athletic individuals. Reverse searches of images can sometimes help here.
• Most dating site scammers are in it for money so be careful of those who concoct a reason for you to transfer funds.
• They may even ask you for bank account details so that they can transfer funds to you but this could leave you liable for a money laundering conviction.
What can Lyonswood Investigations and Forensic Group do to assist you to get proof and confirm the alleged circumstances of this potential partner?
We are called upon in this area to verify the identity and personal circumstances of the persons our clients have met online. In most of these cases, because the people who contact us have a reason for their suspicions, their intuition is proven correct during the investigation. Most people who fall for a catfish, however, are ultimately taken advantage of however as they allow their emotions to override their intuition and do not carry out a due diligence investigation until it is too late.
Contact us now and, in strict confidence, we will discuss your matter and provide you with our opinion, a plan and costs. Become a winner, not a victim. Protect yourself emotionally and financially by making contact with Lyonswood Investigations and Forensic Group today.