It can be hard sometimes to distinguish peers from predators (I’m looking around skeptically at my coworkers as I write this.) This is especially true online. Friendship and Sweetheart Swindles, as defined by the Fraud Center, are when con artists try to foster a relationship with you in order to make you feel comfortable enough to give them money. It kind of sounds like salesmanship on steroids.
In one notorious case, a woman from San Francisco who has been described by authorities as a “serial sweetheart swindler” (who can resist the alliteration?) actually pretended to be an uninsured cancer victim in order to con elderly men. She apparently succeeded in defrauding two men of nearly $50,000
In the past, the National Consumers League has warned
people against using online dating sites because they are a breeding ground for this scam.
Photo Credit: Sister72