Online dating scams and fraud are at higher levels than ever, despite the global recession. Criminal operations worldwide, especially in West Africa in countries such as Nigeria and Ghana, but also in new high risk zones, such as Malaysia and the U.K. are reporting high incident of internet scams and fraud. Traditional areas of high risk like the Philippines, Ukraine and Russia are all at higher risks than last year. Internet dating scams are targeting consumers on trusted sites like Facebook and Match.com.
The scammer’s level of sophistication has increased, and detecting the criminal is no longer an easy task. Who is the real thing and who is after your money or personal information? It can be very difficult to tell. Professional online scammers now use software to hide or change their IP address, they use internet phones (VOIP) to call you on any local number, they speak professionally and gain your trust. They even have real identifications in some cases (stolen) and have addresses which match public records. Because of this new level of risk and criminal savvy, consumers often have to call on the services of a private investigation company to verify the subject.
One firm which has been leading the industry in international background checks is Wymoo® International. The company is now a leader in international private investigation and verification services, and global investigation services include dating background checks, pre-employment, due diligence and infidelity or surveillance, among others confidential and discreet investigation services. The company uses professional field investigators in over 100 countries, and relies less on automated (and often outdated and inaccurate) database search technologies. In fact, management has made it clear that they intend to remain focused on the best field investigators worldwide, and the latest Wymoo® press release cites this and customer service for their impressive growth record.
Whether or not you hire an international private investigator, industry experts offer the following advice. Be skeptical of persons met online, even if you met on large and popular sites such as Facebook, eHarmony or Match.com. Be aware that criminals target people on these sites and scams are often initiated there. Never provide your personal information or send money to anyone who has not been verified. Be very skeptical of anyone who requests money, for any reason. Lastly, if the relationship was begun online and is progressing, hire a professional international background check company to verify the individual or entity, and minimize your risk for scam or fraud. It pays more than ever to be informed and cautious.
All the Best,
© 2010 S. Birch