Protect Yourself from Romance Scams this Valentine’s Day!

  • by Rayna Karst
  • Feb 13, 2024, 14:00 PM

Did you meet your valentine online this year? Watch out for these red flags that your virtual valentine might be a romance scammer!

  • They won’t meet you face-to-face. Romance scammers often pretend that they work construction outside the U.S., are serving in the military overseas, or have other excuses for why they can’t meet you in person.

  • They need money urgently. Romance scammers may say they need money for medical expenses, unexpected legal fees, plane tickets to see you, or any number of reasons that force you to act NOW.

  • They want you to invest. Scammers may also encourage you to invest in cryptocurrency, or a bogus up-and-coming technology or business.

  • The conversation seems scripted or impersonal. As Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology becomes more sophisticated, it can be even more difficult to tell if you’re chatting with a scammer. Thieves can use AI to create realistic images, voices, and even videos to make you think they’re a real person – but they also often use the same formulas for several people. If you think your conversations seem scripted or vague, it’s a definite red flag. 

  • They ask for strange methods of payment. Common payment method requests include gift card numbers, cryptocurrency, or wire transfer.

  • The person seems too perfect. Scammers will use fake photos of incredibly attractive people to reel in potential victims – and they’ve most likely studied your online profiles to figure out what you’d like most in a partner.

  • They want to communicate over text or email instead of through the dating app. If you meet someone online and one of the first things they do is suggest moving your conversation to email or text, that’s a major red flag. Getting ahold of your email and phone number makes you that much easier to scam.

Remember: you should never send money or personal information to someone you don’t know through the internet or over the phone.

If you think that you’ve encountered a romance scammer, you should block that person and report them to the dating app or social media site. If believe you are the victim of a romance scam, don’t hesitate to contact CoreFirst Bank & Trust and report the scam with the Federal Trade Commission at 1-877-382-4357 or