In a warning issued in the London Metropolitan Police’s Little Book of Big Scams, the police said: “Many people, both men and women, have lost huge amounts of money to online dating scammers.
“Dating and romance scammers lower your defences by building an online relationship with you.“Police warn to never give out personal details, particularly in a chatroom.
The report said: “The scammer may ask you to accept money from them into your own bank account.
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Capitalising on modern-day living, romance and dating scams are rife with fraudsters capitalising on people’s search for love online.
And singletons have lost “huge sums” of cash after being duped by sinister fraudsters who strike up a relationship with victims while their guards are down.
The scammer will traditionally try and focus the conversation on you, thereby revealing little details about themselves while appearing interested.
The Met said: “Scammers will normally try and steer you away from communicating on a legitimate dating website that could be monitored by staff.
Answer: You don’t.” Adopting a fake aliases online, often using photos of wealthy and good looking people, is known as catfishing.