It seems that you only need to read online or watch the news to hear about the latest financial or internet scam. International private investigators say this is something that has become an unwelcome part of modern life and it is sad to see how often it happens and the impact it has on peoples’ lives. Being a victim of online fraud can do major damage to a victim’s financial situation and emotional state; it is devastating. But what does this have to do with a dating site like Plenty of Fish?
Plenty of Fish (POF) is an online dating service, popular primarily in Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia, and the United States, all of the countries with the greatest amount of online dating scam victims. The company, based in Vancouver, Canada, is one of the few free dating websites. It generates revenue through advertising and premium memberships, and while it is free to use, POF also offers premium services as part of their upgraded membership. Since mid-2015, POF belongs to the same company that owns other major dating websites like Match.com. Although it is still one of Match’s competitors, POF remains the largest free online dating service, which is the reason why many people still prefer it. The bottom line is that no matter which social media or online dating site you use, criminals and scammers target areas where there are plenty of fish to choose from!
POF is also where hundreds or even thousands of people fall victim to their worst nightmare: internet dating scams. A lot of people have lost their life savings to criminals operating through POF, and it is important to understand and know the risks before engaging into any online relationship.
The anonymity of the internet makes it a perfect place for con artists to hide their real intentions while trying to entrap their victims under the guise of romantic interest. The vast majority of members of reputable dating sites (both paid and free) are legitimately looking for a sincere match, but there are red flags that you should look out for when embarking on the journey of online dating if want to avoid being a victim. Think it can’t happen to you? Think again, anyone can be a victim.
What red flags should you be aware of?
Experienced private investigators explain that the very first thing to keep in mind when dating online is that there is no need to wait for a red flag to appear. If you want to remain safe, the best you can do is hire a professional private investigation firm and get verification and evidence before even getting to the point where you are forced to check. Being cautious will allow you to take wise decisions and safe steps forward. If you understand from the beginning that every online relationship carries serious risks, you will also understand how important it is to prevent trouble and save precious time.
If you are already dating someone on Plenty of Fish, pay close attention to common suspicious behaviors. One of the most notorious red flags is the request for money or detailed personal data. If someone is asking for financial assistance, whether they say they are planning to pay you back or not, get a dating background check as soon as possible. Sometimes it will take a scammer months or even years to make the request, but if you are communicating with a scammer, the odds are they will eventually ask for financial assistance. Many experienced scammers never ask for money, they instead slowly gain your trust, gather your information, and steal your identity and your bank accounts. Others get victims to send nude photos or video, and in exchange blackmail victims.
Another major red flag is when someone is too interested – too quickly – in getting to know you in person and take the relationship further. If you have just met someone online and they are trying to encourage a meet-up before you really know them, they may not just be overly eager. Many online dating scammers use this excuse as a means to request help with a visa or an airline ticket, or even to request personal data that they will use in the future to continue committing crimes. The most important thing is to keep your eyes open to anything that does not seem natural and to verify all the facts. If someone is living or traveling overseas, the risk is even greater.
Be safe and contact us a today for a discreet and professional dating investigation.
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