A String of Online Dating Scams Occur in Hawaii

online dating scamApril 13, 2012 - The Honolulu police department is warning online daters about an ongoing scam occuring in Hawaii, where victims are pressured to send money to people they meet on Match.com. One woman even lost over $300,000 to the scheme.

The four cases so far have all been in Hawaii. The MO of the scammers apparently is to tell you what you want to hear, gain your trust, and then begin asking to borrow money for a variety of different reasons. This is in fact a rather old dating scam that has existed for a long time in one form or another. In each case, the person asking for the money is conveniently located, at least ostensibly, in a foreign country such as the UK. Investigations have revealed that the real address of the perpetrators are more likey somewhere in Africa, based on evidence gained from email and phone records. The requested money is typically send through Western Union or through credit card transactions.

Anyone who is even remotely internet-savvy could probably sniff this scam from a mile away. Sadly, there are still quite a few people who are joining dating sites for the first time, who fall victim to these kinds of scams. Fortunately, one of the victims, who lost $34,000 herself, is working closely with police in an effort to track down the perpetrators.

Some people feel that individuals who become victims to these sorts of scams are dumb, and deserve to lose their money. This is a highly cynical way to look at things, and unfair to the victims, who are probably just naive and inexperienced more than anything else. Even if they do happen to be "dumb", that does not give anybody a license to manipulate them and essentially steal their money.

Below are some huge red flags to watch out for when communicating with someone on a dating site: