14 Feb 2019
A British banking industry body has urged customers to be wary of romance scams in response to a rise in the number victims.
The UK Finance warning comes as new figures show that 4,555 reports of romance fraud were made to UK-based Action Fraud, with victims reporting to have lost over £50 million.
Managing Director, Economic Crime at UK Finance, Katy Worobec, said: “We are urging customers to be vigilant against romance scams and not let a fraudster fool you this Valentine’s.
“Banks are always looking out for any suspicious transactions, but we need customers to be on the guard against suspicious approaches too. Always be wary of any requests for money from someone you’ve never met in person.”
The average age of a romance fraud victim is 50 and 63% of dating fraud victims are female who lose twice as much on average than males, according to an Action Fraud report.
Romance fraud happens when a person thinks they have met the perfect partner, usually through an online dating website or social media, but in fact a fraudster is using a fake profile to form a relationship with them.
The fraudster will then gain the person’s trust and ask for money or enough personal information to steal the victim’s identity.
Please note: The police are urging those who believe they have been a victim of romance fraud to report it to Action Fraud (UK), which can be reached on telephone number 0300 123 2040.
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