“Love hurts, love scars, love wounds and marks; any heart, not tough or strong enough.” Or so the Nazareth’s song goes. Truth is, in matters of true love, it shouldn’t hurt, abuse or make you feel down. It shouldn’t take advantage of you nor make you feel something is not right. Romance scammers are masters of persuasion, abuse and crime to steal your money and trust.
Romance scams come mostly from countries like Ghana, Nigeria, Russia, Malaysia and the Philippines and other developing countries.Since the early days of the internet we have seen millions of victims falling for this type of scam, and even as people are becoming more and more aware, millions still fall victim. And some even for the second or third time!
Internet is the open door for globalization, and crime also has evolved with this new platform and online way of life.Honest people aren’t the only ones searching the web.Criminals now actively join social networking and online dating sites, setting up fake profiles and profiles, and may even use a real identity they borrow from the web, and even use Google Maps to get a picture of your house, and other public records websites to learn the names of your entire family.Make no mistake, information about you on the internet is a direct threat to your privacy and safety.
Con artists have found over the internet a safer way to get away with crime, and sites like Match.com, eHarmony and Facebook now offer attractive hunting grounds to search for victims.Criminals become your “friends” online, gain your trust, slowly gather your information, and then steal your money and/or identity.The results can be devastating and costly.
Authorities around the world still try to deliberate an efficient way to go after these unscrupulous criminals. Private investigators stress the need of a professional dating background check or discreet international background check investigation whenever you are involved in a relationship with someone you met online, whether it was through online dating or social networking.
When talking about internet scams and romance scams in particular, there’s no gender, no status, no nationality, no race and no age group that is immune. Anyone can be and eventually will be a target. In many cases, the only way to know for sure and verify the identity behind the photo or email is to consult a professional international investigation firm for assistance.
Experts say be skeptical online and try to keep your internet footprint small.Guard your private information.Search Google for your name and actively go after any site that is publishing your private information without your authorization.Many sites make a profit by collecting, selling and distributing your private information across the web.This in turn puts you at direct risk and is used by criminals.Be safe, never send money to anyone you’ve never met, and keep your private information private.When in doubt, consider a professional background check.
Mr. Birch is a graduate from University of Pennsylvania and has over 20 years of experience in private investigation services and covert surveillance. Mr. Birch has served as a senior advisor for international security details involving foreign government personnel and CEOs. He has directed investigations in many countries worldwide and is an expert in private investigations, background checks and fraud risk.