In February, 2021, The Federal Trade Commission reported that romance scams reached a record $304 million during 2020. This translates to a 50% increase from 2019. For an average individual this means a median dollar loss of around $2,500. Furthermore, the Commission notes that for three years running people have reported losing more money on romance scams than other popular scam types.
Popular Scams and Red Flags
Scammers and fraudsters may make use of deceptive, unfair, false and misleading business practices which can lead consumers to suffer personal or financial loss. Scammers may typically target the elderly, as they are considered to be easy targets, but anyone can become a victim of scams. With identity fraud losses reaching a staggering $56 million in 2020, according to recent research, it has become imperative to know how to spot possible red flags.
- Forex Scams: An important question to ask here has to do with the broker being regulated. Bear in mind it can be quite easy to claim to be regulated or licensed. Fraudulent brokers may do their best to disguise themselves in such a manner that they appear to be regulated, but it is advisable for those interested in using Forex brokers to do their due diligence. Scam broker reviews can prove to be a valuable tool in preventing future scams.
- Dating Scams: Our online lifestyles have seen many people turn to dating apps or social networking sites in order to meet someone new. The problem is that instead of finding a new acquaintance or friend, many may run into a scammer who is trying to trick them out of money. At some point the scammer usually claims they are overseas or working for the military, therefore unavailable, if the question of meeting ever comes up.
- Cryptocurrency Scams: Imposter websites, fake mobile apps, scam emails and other avenues are exploited by those involved in cryptocurrency scams. A good rule of thumb to remember here: If it is too good to be true, it probably is. So if a platform offers a very high return, you probably should do your due diligence and be wary.
- Pet Scams: Advance fee and non-delivery frauds have become very common with the growing preference for online shopping and the new opportunities this brings for online offenders. Pet scams work by hooking unsuspecting victims with adorable photos and heart-breaking tales of animals in need of forever homes. A red flag here is when the scammer tries to rush their potential victim into paying a non-refundable deposit in order to “secure” the animal.
An Online Community Dedicated To Help Scam Victims
Based in London, ReportScam is an online community who aims to help persons that suffered financial losses due to scams. A spokesperson for ReportScams, Peter Karda, says: “It is the victim only who knows the pain which he/she suffers due to the fraud. It affects mentally as well as physically and the victim needs help at the earliest. ReportScam is an online community of traders and recovery experts. We are trying to provide justice to victims of scams whether done by a fraud Forex, binary, crypto fraud brokers, or any fraudulent activity. We are also providing reviews of scam brokers through our continuous blogs and also latest scam news. The purpose of these reports is to help traders know about the scam activities of these blacklisted brokers which will help them to avoid losing money with them.”
Free consultation is available for victims of scams and the online community makes discussions on various scams possible though a forum. The platform combines the experience of fund recovery managers, lawyers and Bitcoin recovery experts to help victims. Spokesperson, Peter Karda explains: “After a scam victim fills our complaint form, we carefully assess your complaint and with the help of our team of professionals, we decide the best course of action for your case. If your case is eligible for a refund or chargeback, we transfer it to a very reliable recovery company that navigates you through the best path or recovery.” Karda continues: “We want to spread this message to every trader or individual in the world: It is possible to get your money back if you were scammed.”
A Few Last Words
Scams target people of all backgrounds, income levels and ages. All of us may be vulnerable to a scam at some point in our lives. Scams succeed because they look like the real deal and often catch people off guard. As scammers are taking advantage of new technology and make use of more sophisticated scam structures, some victims may find solace in knowing that fund recovery is possible in most of the cases.