Online dating scams declines before Valentine's Day

Online dating fraud declines during the Valentine's Day season, according to new research on romance scams.
Online dating fraud declines during the Valentine's Day season, according to new research on romance scams.

If you are considering online dating before Valentine's Day, there is now one more reason to take advantage of online dating opportunities over the Valentine's Day weekend: online dating fraud declines during the Valentine's Day season, according to new research on romance scams.

Fraudulent online dating transactions made up just 1.23 percent of all online dating transactions in February last year, noted mobile security and fraud prevention firm iovation. And on Valentine's Day 2015, fraudulent online dating transactions made up a similar percentage of all online dating transactions (1.26 percent). Both of these percentages are lower than the average online dating fraud last year.

While we were tempted to attribute the data to scammers easing up on their business to meet partners in offline setting, the actual cause is online dating scammers being crowded out by a surge in legitimate dating prospects during the Valentine's Day holiday season, said iovation Director of Marketing Connie Gougler told SCMagazine.com.

She said online dating fraudsters are moving to more automated and sophisticated systems, in which teams of employees are hired to do specific tasks as part of the scams. The study found that the top countries where online dating fraud originated in 2015 were the U.S., Ghana, Nigeria, France and Vietnam.

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