Romance Scammers Stole £92m From Victims Last Year

Romance Scammers Stole £92m From Victims Last Year

UK police have warned that the period between Christmas Day and Valentine’s Day is the most dangerous for users of dating sites as scammers are out in force.

Many fraudsters seek to establish contact and build a rapport with their victims during this time, leading to a spike in reports of romance scams and financial loss in the weeks and months after, said Action Fraud.

Those losses soared from £8.7m last March to £14.6m in May as a result, according to figures from the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau (NFIB).

Total financial losses from romance fraud over the year (November 2020 to October 2021) stood at a staggering £92m. That’s based on 8,863 cases that were reported to the NFIB, up from 6,968 in the 2020 calendar year.

However, this is likely to be an under-estimate since many victims feel too ashamed to get the police involved.

A plurality of victims (20%) over the reporting period were aged 50-59, and half were wome. Two-fifths (39%) were men, and 11% did not record their gender.

Police are asking relatives of online daters to protect family members from being scammed by flagging the warning signs.

“Typically, romance

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