New research from Barclays has found that, on average, people in the United Kingdom lose over £2,000 when they have been a victim of online dating fraud.
The data also showed that 37% of people who had been scammed paid out over £5,000. Singles aged between 45 and 64 were most likely to be tricked into sending money.
Head of Digital Safety at Barclays Jodie Gilbert told the BBC: “While millions of us take to dating websites and apps to find true love, criminals are getting ready to pounce on anyone who lets their guard down.
“We must all remain aware whilst looking for the warning signs, such as someone asking you to help them out of an ‘unfortunate situation’ by sending money.”
The Metropolitan Police have released a video that gives online daters advice on how to protect themselves from scammers.
It also warns users to not send money to someone they haven’t met before, even if they say they desperately need it.
The video was created as a part of the Met Police’s Fraud and Online Crime animation series, which teaches the public how to stay safe online.
Between 2016 and 2017 it was reported that just under five million people over 65 in the UK believe they have been targeted by online fraudsters.
Read more here.