Scams from dating websites

Within hours of the expected arrival time, an emergency will strike: A work visa has expired, or their aunt/niece/child is sick and they need a few thousand dollars to be wired over so they can finally meet their intended.

In many cases, scammers will choose to use pictures of military personnel. Grisham set up a personal blog for soldiers to report their photo being used on online dating sites.

But in the last decade or so, the game of looking for love has gotten some new rules, with the venue moving from the bar world to the the cyber world.

Instead of men searching for the right verbal approach, many now search for the right photo to put on their profile page.

Already, through its quality assurance methods, the site has identified 20,000 scammers who get permanently blocked from Cupid’s communities each month.

Here are some expert tips on avoiding scams from Cupid.com’s Communications director, Sean Wood: Word of caution: The FBI recently issued a warning about a different kind of online dating scam known as “ransomware.” It’s a virus that will make your computer inoperable until you hand over a payment. Have you ever been a victim of an online dating scam?

You already know to be wary whenever you go online, so you don't fall prey to the various types of scammers, thieves, con artists, hackers, malware-writers and other threats that proliferate on the Internet. It's both the most coveted and elusive emotion of all time.

And if you're looking for love in an online dating site you must be extra-careful, because looking for love already leaves you emotionally vulnerable, but you can't let that vulnerability bleed over into other realms as well. Songs are sung about either finding it or recovering from it, screen writers send story lines on unrealistic tangents to secure romantic endings, and books are filled with characters searching and pining for it.

[Update: the site contacted us to notify us of the precautions they have in place, including a human editor who responds to complaints and reports, and Threat Metrix, a cybercrime prevention software.] “On some dating sites, as many as one out of 10 profiles is a scammer,,” Mark Brooks, editor of Online Personals Watch told Glamour.The scam typically works like this: A con artist, usually based in an Internet cafe overseas, will lift a photo from Facebook or another social networking site.They will painstakingly craft a fake profile and begin targeting people that are looking for love.The lesson here is that online dating startups will need to step up their game to keep consumers safe.“In the war against online dating scams and security threats, we’ve chosen to do whatever is necessary to always be a few steps ahead of scammers, and not the other way around – which is usually too late for our users,” said Cupid.com’s CEO, Bill Dobbie.

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