5 Tips to Avoid Dating Scams

By Dee, 29 June, 2024.

5 Tips to Avoid Dating Scams

There are lots of great ways to meet a new partner - work, hobbies, friends, online dating, speed dating or (our favourite!) dinner dating with A Table For Six. 

If you’re using dating apps it’s important to be aware of scams and stay safe when you’re dating.  

This week Match Group (owner of Tinder, Hinge, Match, Meetic, OkCupid, Pairs, Plenty Of Fish), Bumble and other small dating apps handed the Australian government a voluntary industry code to focus on making dating safer.   This was in response to the government's request for a code of conduct for dating apps, due to a significant number of safety issues identified in recent years. 

We hear a lot of stories about dating apps from our members.  Recently we were talking to a man in Brisbane who lost $5000, after being convinced to send money to a new online friend he met on a dating site. She had sent him convincing, beautiful profile photos and sounded genuine, so he felt sure she was real. It was only after sending his hard-earned money that he realised he’d been scammed.  His bank was unable to retrieve any money.  

Online dating scams are becoming more sophisticated in 2024.  They typically involve individuals who create fake profiles to trick unsuspecting victims. Scammers are increasingly using AI to create fake profile photos and write quality bios.  

Scammers focus on building emotional connections with their targets, gaining their trust before manipulating them into sending money or sharing personal information. They’ll often take time building trust and will claim to share your interests or belief systems.

Once they’ve built a connection, they seek to gain money from their target. Common tactics include fabricated stories about financial hardships, urgent medical needs, or travel emergencies that require monetary assistance. 

These scams not only cause financial damage but can also lead to severe emotional trauma, as victims realise that the person they trusted never actually existed. 

5 Tips for Staying Safe and Avoiding Online Dating Scams

  1. Verify Their Identity Before Sharing Personal Information - Before sharing any personal information, it is crucial to verify the identity of the person you are communicating with. Use video calls early in your conversations to confirm that the person matches their profile and is located in Australia. Be cautious if they repeatedly avoid video chats or make excuses to delay them. Additionally, conduct a reverse image search of their profile pictures to check if they are stolen from someone else’s social media.  Don’t solely rely on this, as some fraudsters may be using AI generated photos. 

  2. Be Wary of Red Flags & Inconsistent Stories - Scammers often slip up and provide inconsistent information. Pay attention to details and be cautious if their stories don’t add up. Common red flags include professing love too quickly, love bombing you, avoiding direct questions, and having a profile that seems too good to be true.  If it seems too good to be true, it probably is. 

  3. Never Send Money or Card Details - No matter how convincing their story might be, never send money or card details to someone you have met online. There are now variations of schemes where scammers ask you to buy pre-paid gift cards and share the code, effectively giving away the card. Scammers often fabricate emergencies or hardships to exploit your generosity.  

  4. Don't Rush - A common trick is to use urgency to rush targets into making a decision and moving to action.  Scammers are hoping to rush you, so you don't take time to process the details, see red flags or think too much.  Never rush to respond - always sleep on it.  
  5. Prioritise Safety When Meeting in Real Life - Meeting in person is a significant step in online dating, and it should be approached with caution. Always choose a public place for your first few meetings, such as a cafe. Inform a friend or family member of your plans, including the location and time of the meeting. Have a safety plan in place, such as arranging for a friend to call you during the date to ensure everything is going well. Trust your gut feelings and wrap up the date early if you choose to. 

While online dating offers an opportunity to meet a range of new people, it also exposes singles to the risk of scams. By verifying identities, being vigilant about red flags, and prioritising safety during in-person meetings, you can reduce these risks. 

Finally, we recommend joining dinner dating at A Table For Six, offering you a safe and fun way to meet quality singles. 

Dating in small groups with A Table For Six gives you an enjoyable alternative to the uncertainty and stress of online dating.

Our dinners bring together 6 singles, 3 men and 3 women.  This creates a trusted way to meet multiple potential partners in a single setting, reducing the risks associated with one-on-one encounters.

The group dynamic fosters a relaxed and social atmosphere, making it easier to connect with others naturally. 

Additionally we’ve done the ID checking for you - so you don't need to worry about fake profiles, names, locations or ages!  

A Table For Six creates fun, safe social opportunities for meaningful connections, making the journey of finding love easier.


TAGGED UNDER: single, dating, Table for Six, love