Online dating apps or social networking sites have become an everyday way to meet that special someone. But instead of finding romance, some find a scammer trying to trick them into sending money.
Fraudsters create fake profiles, begin relationships with unsuspecting individuals and before long, profess strong feelings for them, despite never having met in person or on a video call.
Often the scammers will claim to be living or travelling outside Australia. A common tactic is to use another person’s real photo and information and then claim to be an active-duty soldier, oil rig worker, or a medic with an international organisation. Conversations are often quickly steered away from social networking or dating apps to private email or instant messaging apps so the fraudsters can avoid being tracked.
Suddenly the person has an emergency - often an unexpected medical or visa expense - and requests financial help from their new love. Payment is often requested by money transfer or gift cards, which means that they are almost impossible to track or to reclaim.
Sadly, these types of scams are all too common and cost Australians millions every year. If a family member or friend has fallen a victim to a romance scam, you can read more about supporting them on our Victims of Fraud webpage.
If you have been targeted by a scam relating to your Qudos account, visit our webpage Reporting Scams to find out who to contact.