£92m lost to dating scams last year
The National Fraud Intelligence Bureau (NFIB) recently reported a staggering £92m was lost last year to online dating scams. Even more shockingly, it is likely that the true figure is much larger, with police fearing that many people are simply too ashamed to admit their error, instead choosing to keep their mistake under wraps.
This trend was noticed by our investigations team at Conflict International, with them reporting a marked rise in the number of scam cases taken on at the back end of 2021. Commenting on this, our investigator Nat George said: “It is a trend we have been noticing for a few months now, it caused many conversations in the office about what can be done to stop this from happening. The scammers know what they’re doing and will go to all lengths to keep their real identity private.”
It is a growing problem, but the Conflict team have a few things to look for if you suspect you may be communicating with a scam artist. Often, scammers will tug at your heart strings with stories of failed businesses, or family members that are in dire need of help. They will send photos of ‘their children’ to make themselves seem like a genuine family-oriented person, but these photos are often always taken from the social media accounts of unsuspecting, real people.
If you have any doubt at all, do not send money and instead reach out to our team who can conduct rapid investigations to verify the identity of the person you believe you are speaking to.
Additionally, if you fear you have already fallen victim to a dating scam, please reach out to our Investigations Manager Jane Carey for an anonymous, no obligation chat to explore what options are available to you.