In 2021, US consumers reported losses of $547 million from romance scams
INDIANAPOLIS — As Valentine’s Day approaches, love is in the air — but so are romance scams, and Attorney General Todd Rokita wants Indiana consumers to be on the lookout.
“More and more people are going online these days to search for that special someone,” Attorney General Rokita said. “Many do this with no problem, but in some cases people find scammers instead. We want to prevent Hoosiers from falling victim to scammers eager to take advantage of them.
In romance scams, perpetrators prey on unsuspecting matches by creating fake profiles to take advantage of online victims. They go to great lengths to impersonate potential romantic partners with similar interests in order to trick people into offering gifts, money, or personal information.
In recent years, these scams have multiplied. According to the Federal Trade Commission, in 2021, US consumers reported losses of $547 million from romance scams, an increase of about 80% from 2020.
Here are some warning signs that someone might be more interested in your money or personal information than your affection:
- Your new romantic interest sends a picture that doesn’t look realistic. On the contrary, the person looks more like a model from a fashion magazine.
- The relationship moves quickly, and the other person quickly professes their love for you.
- Their story seems suspicious or offbeat.
- The person tries to isolate you from your friends and family.
- The person requests inappropriate photos or financial information that could then be used against you.
- The person asks you for money and requires specific payment methods such as wire transfer, preloaded gift card, or cash.
If you ever suspect a scam of any type, file a complaint at indianaconsumer.com or call Attorney General Todd Rokita’s office at 1-800-382-5516.