Zara Larsson: Lush LifeiTunesAmazon

Zara Larsson: Lush LifeiTunesAmazon

No love lost with romance fraudsters

No love lost with romance fraudsters

Published by May Norman at 8:17am 12th February 2019.

North Yorkshire Police issue warning over romance fraudsters ahead of Valentine's Day

  • Police issue warning for those seeking love.
  • Romance fraudsters target people ahead of Valentine's Day.
  • 3557 frauds were reported across the UK in 2017.

As Valentine's day approaches, North Yorkshire Police is putting an arrow in the heart of criminals, by urging those who are finding love online to take extra care.

Online dating can result in life long partnerships and happy relationships. However, sadly some people instead of finding love, find themselves on the other end of a scam.

Action Fraud reported that in 2017, 3557 frauds were reported with over £41 million lost to romance fraudsters*.

And with evidence suggesting that many of these types of frauds go unreported, the real figure lost to criminals may be much, much more.

So what is romance fraud and how can you protect yourself against it?

Romance fraud is where a fraudster sets up a fake online dating profile, to form a relationship with a person with the intention to gain their trust and take their money or personal information, in order to steal their identity.

Detective Inspector Jonathan Rowland of North Yorkshire Police’s Major Fraud and Economic Crime team said:

“We don’t want to scare anyone away from using online dating sites and finding relationships online. However, we do recommend that people remain aware of the information they are sharing or posting online and be wary of giving away too many personal details when speaking to anyone online.

“A fraudster only needs a few details such as your full name, date of birth or home address in order to piece information together and potentially steal your identity.

“Never share banking details, or send or receive money – even if you believe and trust the person. Stay on the site’s messaging service and do not to switch to social media or texting to communicate. It’s also advisable to not open any attachments or links sent to you by someone you have met online.

“If you are going to enter into the online dating world, use a reputable dating website which is a member of the Online Dating Association. ODA members have to commit to an industry code of practice that includes honest communication with users and they have to ensure measures are in place to protect your privacy and provide a mechanism for reporting abuse.”

So how can you spot the signs that your new beau may not be the genuine article?

  • If they’re asking a lot of personal questions about you, but not sharing too much detail about themselves.
  • If they ask for your help, specifically financial help, by using the emotional attachment you’ve built with them.
  • Are they just too good to be true? Are their pictures are too perfect, too professional. If yes, then they may be using pictures from modelling sites. It’s an idea to run a reverse image search to check the images haven’t been sourced elsewhere.

If you think you have fallen for the lies of a romance fraudster, firstly, don’t be too embarrassed to contact the police. You are not the first person to fall for this type of scam.

Romance fraudsters are experienced, serial fraudsters, who are very good at gaining your trust and taking your money. Sadly, you will not be the only person who has been taken advantage of.

Most importantly, don’t send any further money to this person. The next step is to report in confidence to police, or if you prefer you can contact Action Fraud either online or by calling 0300 123 2040.

Talking about making a report to the police, Detective Inspector Rowland said;

“Please do not feel too embarrassed or foolish to contact the police. Sadly, we deal with dozens of fraud cases like this every week and we take each report incredibly seriously. So please pick up the phone, make the call and report it to us.”

*For more details, head to Action Fraud.


Email Icon

Sign up for exclusive news, competitions and offers.
Proper Local News updates from Stray FM

Newer article

Ripon man charged with attempted child sexual offences

Harrogate, Craven & Wharfedale: The man in his 40s has been charged with attempting to cause or incite a girl under 13 to engage in sexual activity.

Older article

Ilkley parking shake-up: final proposals on display

Harrogate, Craven & Wharfedale: Bradford Council wants to introduce permit parking and pay and display.

Top articles

Skipton man's ode to Yorkshire charity music video

Harrogate, Craven & Wharfedale: Dan Horsman's version of 'Old Town Road' hits our screens

Man dies after falling onto wall at Camber Sands beach

National: A man has died in a "tragic accident" after falling onto a wall at a beach on the southeast coast of England.

An assault on the senses: What attending a rocket launch is like

World: In the heat of a Kazakhstan night, we stood 900m (2,952ft) from the launchpad where a Soyuz rocket readied for take-off. 

Is running bad for your joints?

Lifestyle: Local chiropractor offers advice at Race for Life 2019.

Whyte vs Rivas: Derek Chisora scores brutal second-round knockout of Artur Szpilka

Sport: Derek Chisora brutally knocked out Artur Szpilka in the second round of their heavyweight collision at The O2 on Saturday night.

Shaun Ryder on early nights, hair loss, and watching Watership Down with Bez

Showbiz: Shaun Ryder wants to know what day it is. His brow furrows as he does some quick working out on his fingers. "Wednesday? Wednesday! Coronation Street! Brilliant."

WATCH: 43 Minutes of Queen in the 70s

70s: The band's team have put together highlights of the their early career including some iconic performances.

WATCH: First look at Disney's Mulan live action

Harrogate, Craven & Wharfedale: In the remake of the animated movie, Mulan will try to bring honour to her family.

"It's a fantastic place": Harrogate cancer centre celebrates major milestone

Harrogate, Craven & Wharfedale: The Sir Robert Ogden Macmillan Centre at Harrogate District Hospital is marking its five year anniversary.

Local school success in green poem competition

Education: To celebrate Stray FM's Green Month.

North Yorkshire woman taking on epic swimming challenge for charity

Harrogate, Craven & Wharfedale: Jacqui Hargrave will swim Lake Windermere 'two ways' for St Michael's Hospice.

Top Party Dresses for the Festive Season

Christmas: Local Blogger, the Harrogate Girl, picks the best frocks, gowns and outfits for the big Christmas parties of 2017.

Beth Parsons leaves Stray FM

Stray FM Station News: A childhood listener who's dream came true is off to pastures new.

Delve into deliciousness at Mother Shiptons Inn

Test pages: We sent Stray FM's James Stanley to try out the new menu at Mother Shipton's Inn Knaresborough.

North Yorkshire districts among best places to live in UK

Harrogate, Craven & Wharfedale: Three parts of North Yorkshire have been named in the top ten places to live in the UK.


Are you going on an abroad holiday this year?

Trending in Yorkshire

Skipton man's ode to Yorkshire charity music video

Dan Horsman's version of 'Old Town Road' hits our screens

Long delays expected on the A59

Roadworks due on Sunday.

Search for the next Oasis or Westlife is on

It's part of a Martin House Hospice competition

More news...