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Retired Community Manager

Online Dating Scams

The beginning of the year--especially New Year's Day--is peak time for online dating. Do you know how to recognize an online dating scam? Have you ever suspected you were a recipient of one? Do you have any other advice or tips to share on how to avoid scammers while looking for your true love?

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Gold Conversationalist

@LydiaN586309 Amen to that scenario. Have tried a few sites and have come to the reality that this women can not be attracted to me because of my looks lol. After a few messages then comes the one that reads her car broke down, utilities have been turned off, she's had her hours cut and my favorite she needs help buying diapers n formula lol. Now I'm not saying all sites are scams just be careful who you talk to.

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Honored Social Butterfly

When your online love first asks for money, know the scam is on!

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Conversationalist

Join a dating site, have some fun, but be careful, alert and always use good judgement no matter where you meet the person. What makes you think that someone you meet at the gym or the grocery store can't scam you? Certainly, you will know what they look like but you don't know who they are or what they are up to. My advice, don't give anybody any money, asking for money is a red flag, one excuse after the other why they can't talk on the phone and meet in person is a red flag, their financial crisis and woos are not your responsibility.  And for the ones who post old pictures and are not completely honest about their physically condition, I have no words, it makes no sense, but usually, they are harmless. Dating failures/horrors can happen no matter where you meet the person. 

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Newbie

i've met very nice men online. However, there are scammers everywhere whether in person or online. Just be careful and don't take it so seriously! Here are a few things to consider.

  • Dating now is much different than it was 30+ years ago so anyone entering the dating world (in person or online) that is playing by the rules of 30 years ago will probably have a problem in person or online.
  • We're from a time where your word was your bond but that's not the case anymore so don't blindly believe anyone.
  • Don't give out your SSN, credit card, account number, etc. If you want to buy something for them, do it yourself.
  • If you feel that you can attract a "George Clooney" or "Halley Berry" in person, then go for it online. Otherwise, be realistic. There are very nice men and women out there that aren't as pretty as George and Halley! There are also pretty, young, scammers looking for a sugar daddy or sugar momma.
  • If they're in love after only a few emails (or having never met you in person) be careful. It's flattering but they don't really know you, do they?
  • Tell your friends about who you've met online. Let your online friend(s) know that your other friends know about them. Don't accept any secret relationships, just as you wouldn't in person. Scammers want to separate you from your friends and family.
  • Don't spend months texting/emailing because you really don't know who you're talking to. After a few online texts and/or emails, insist on meeting them via Zoom or something that allows you to see them. If they won't do it, end the communications.
  • Look them up online. Google them. Do a background check, if you're getting serious. Back in the day, you'd ask friends about someone that you met but it's different now. Everyone has an online presence. If they don't, consider it a red flag. 
  • Also periodically google yourself to see what's online about you. You might be surprised what they can find. If it's too much information, go to the site(s) to get it taken down.
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Contributor

I do not want any communications from Male or Female strangers.

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Contributor

How about AARP starting our own dating site?

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Regular Contributor

Seriously, NEVER set up dates online.  Every offer is bogus, a lie, or, at the very best, hugely over hyped.  Strange people lurk there.   Better, meet someone at the gym, the grocery store, or through friends and relatives.  Far less risky.  Don't be desperate.

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Newbie

I agree there is a fair amount of deception with online dating. We all want to feel accepted so some exaggerate or outwardly lie about who they are. What I don't understand is this - - don't these same people think their date will figure it out, sooner or later? 

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Some are just thinking about being accepted and not about the end results.

 

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Regular Contributor

 I have often wondered the same things , John.

For examples: posting pictures that were taken 15 -20 yrs. ago... Stating you are in excellent health, head full of hair, etc.

If and when the two people meet one another, it is obvious they are much older than their posted pictures, using cane/walker or having other health issues,

almost bald or bald head. etc. all these various things. What is the purpose in not telling the truth upfront and before a meeting in person is planned?

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Contributor

Don’t lie, posting 20 year old pictures..etc.. you never know, I may not have given you a 2nd look 20 years ago, and find you irresistible now. Not a list of ailments, we all have those, but if you have say..seizures or diabetes I want to know, so if went somewhere and then started feeding unwell, then if I know what it is, we can get you better. Some info about your family is appreciated too. I have very few family here and I think a man who loves his family and keeps in contact with them..I think WOW. So it’s a little bit of all these things that make you more attractive. Just take that chance,truth will always be your best bet..

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Contributor

Morning , Sonia/allllll other AARP members-followers :

 

An additional suggestion ...

 

Although it's certainly  n o t  perfect , because it's  F R E E , why not check out POF ?

 

Siiiiimply keep your wits about you , & I would again propose treating others as you would want them treating you , & see how it goes ...

 

Heh , nothing ventured , nothing gained , right ?

 

Well , since I need to get out the door shortly to my pilates class , everybody  T R Y & stay warm out there today , it being kiiiindA chilly for South Jersey this morning ... 

 

     Handlebarjim ( POF moniker )

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Contributor

Geez , with alllllll the negativity I'm reading , it's a wonder  a n y  of us in our age group are finding one another ...

 

At 66 , & on dating site POF , I've met some nice women , will probably maintain at least one person as a longstanding friend , & otherwise continue to seriously look for a significant other ....

 

Sure , belonging to a health club through Silver Sneakers while  attending yoga & pilates classes ( predominantly female ) , & playing pickleball allows one to meet people , but dating websites , at least in theory , should provide the opportunity to meet like-minded folks of the opposite sex ...

 

Tricky ,  Y E S  , requiring one to keep their wits about them ,  Y E S , but certainly  n o t  necessary to completely  a v o i d  them ...

 

Just be careful , & let's by all means be  N I C E  to one another ...

 

One guy's two cents ...

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Regular Contributor

Nice post , well worded, and I agree.

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Regular Contributor

If he or she sounds too good to be true............don't answer.

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Regular Contributor

Not always the case.

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Super Contributor

Absolutely no interest in online dating.  I have no car so that's a dealbreaker right there.

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Periodic Contributor

I have a car, but am financially challenged because i have a car. Dont use it much, it’s expensive. I walk alot. Supposed to be good for me. (Ha ha! Still waiting for the good)  i don’t end up meeting people who are in my age group who are date worthy. Where are these people?

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Contributor

I guess they are all hiding at the grocery store, the gym and other places that we can't walk to

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Regular Contributor

Lol........put a smile on my inactive self.

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Periodic Contributor

I .et my wife 24 years ago online. It was all great for about 30 years then she went funny. The divorse is in the works now. At least there were 20 years of comfort. Now it is a challenge to devide everything up. At 65 i am starting over again. It is inly stuff and can be replaced but it is still a pain in the butt to have to go through this.

g626
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Regular Contributor

While it's nice to remind everyone about online dating scams, I wonder if all the information and talk might have caused many people to shy away from using these various matching/dating sites? Scams are everywhere and come to us not only by the internet, but telephone, postal delievery mail, etc.

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