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Match Group launches global campaign to raise awareness of romance scams

According to the Federal Trade Commission, romance scams reported in the U.S. result in higher losses than any other type of scam.
Credit: AP
FILE - In this July 5, 2015, file photo, a man uses the dating app Tinder in New Delhi. A House subcommittee is investigating popular dating services such as Tinder and Bumble for allegedly allowing minors and sex offenders to use their services. Bumble, the Meet Group, Grindr and the Match Group, which owns such popular services as Tinder, Match.com and OkCupid, are the current targets of the investigation by the House Oversight and Reform subcommittee on economic and consumer policy. (AP Photo/Tsering Topgyal, File)

WASHINGTON — The company behind dating apps such as Tinder and Hinge is rolling out a global awareness campaign to help people date safer and avoid forms of online fraud.

Match Group (MTCH) announced Tuesday that people who use Tinder, Hinge, Match, Plenty of Fish, Meetic and OurTime will begin to receive messages alerting them to tips to watch out for to help identify potential scams. 

The tips, which were created with the help of law enforcement and financial exploitation experts, will start to appear for users around the world during the month of January through in-app messages. 

MTCH says dating scams have grown in popularity over the last few years. This has led to more safety measures through the apps such as selfie verification and video chat to sending popup messages with safety tips.

“As a former detective and special agent, I know firsthand how scammers lure unsuspecting individuals into giving personal information and ultimately money – including preying on those looking for love or companionship,” said Buddy Loomis, Senior Director of Law Enforcement Operations and Investigations at Match Group.

According to the Federal Trade Commission, romance scams reported in the U.S. result in higher losses than any other type of scam, with over $300 million in reported losses each year since 2020.

Tips for protecting yourself online:

  1. Stay on the app as long as possible. Scammers will attempt to get you on to another platform quickly which can be a common flag for these types of scams. Stay on the app when getting to know a new connection. 
  2. Use the tools available in app. Make sure to verify your profile with 'Photo Verification' and also look out for the verification check on your matches to help confirm they are the person in their profile pictures. You can also set up video chats before meeting in person.
  3. They’re a 10 but a crypto expert. Hard pass. If a new love interest is giving you crypto or investment advice, there is a high probability that it’s a scam. 
  4. The promise of a big return of investment or help secure financial future. Be skeptical of anyone who appears to be wealthy and successful and wants to teach you how to invest and make money.
  5. They may play on your heart strings and appear to be desperate. Scammers often claim they need money for a Visa, customs fees, surgeries, family medical bills, car repairs or plane tickets to visit. It is a giant red flag if someone seems desperate and money is involved.
  6. Scams can look different and constantly evolve. Keep your guard up and stay vigilant

MTCH says it is a good rule of practice to never send or receive money through a wire transfer, money order, currency exchange, gift card or investment with someone you’ve never met in person. Not for any reason - ever.

“This devastating crime impacts not only victims financially, but emotionally and physically," said Mark Solomon, international president of IAFCI. "It is only through training, education and awareness that we can prevent these types of crimes from occurring.” 

Watch Next: Two Gaithersburg brothers have been charged in a $5 million romance scam

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