When people think of fraud, different white collar crimes come to mind: Credit card fraud, investment fraud and real estate fraud are a few. However, an internet crime is on the rise, with rather heartbreaking consequences.
Online dating takes an expensive turn
Online dating has become increasingly popular over the years. Apps such as Bumble and Tinder match millions of users. Sometimes, individuals make real connections. Other times, relationships manifested through social media are not always what they seem to be.
A romance scam is an internet crime that involves taking advantage of vulnerable Internet users. Also known as catfishing, scammers usually create fake online profiles to lure in victims. Playing off emotional triggers, they gain interest and trust from targeted individuals. The end goal is to make some sort of profit, such as:
- Credit card details
- Intimate pictures or videos
Serious charges for romance fraud
Individuals who experience romance fraud usually lose out on a lot of money. People have given millions to such con artists. The consequences of romance scams can be very serious. The crime can encompass a variety of charges, which includes:
- Money laundering
- Identify theft
- Credit card fraud
Romance fraud can have implications on both sides. Victims of romance scams are often convinced to commit felonies like financial fraud on the behalf of their romantic interest. In many cases, both parties can land into legal trouble. Being accused of an internet crime, or any type of fraud, is no light matter. Developing a strong defense is paramount.