LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY)– New love can grow in strange places, but in most cases, it is not social media messengers. Con artists have always used social media, but now they are offering to send you money and pay your bills in an effort to steal your money.
Often times, you will get a message through a dating or social media app from someone in exchange for affections. Scammers promise to award affections with a weekly allowance of hundreds of dollars.
Chris Babin, of the Better Business Bureau of Acadiana, says this type of relationship makes victims vulnerable to overpayment scam.
“They’re going to pay you money except the check’s not real so when you deposit it in your account, they want you to send money elsewhere, at least a portion of it and then when you realize the check is not real, the funds have already left your account and the check doesn’t clear,” he told News 10.
Some victims even reported scammers claiming to need access to personal accounts in order to send the money.
Here’s how you can protect yourself from this romance scam:
- Know your rights and responsibilities when it comes to using checks. Banks will make the funds from a check available before the money is actually transferred into your account. If you spend the money and the check is a fake, the bank has the right to recover the funds from you.
- Research your date first. Many scammers steal photos from the internet to use in their dating profiles.
- Ask specific questions about details given in a profile. A scammer may stumble over remembering details or making a story fit.
- never send money or sensitive personal information to someone you’ve never met in person. Cut off contact if someone starts asking you for financial or personally identifiable information like your credit card number.
If you have a scam you’d like me to investigate, feel free to send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.