And if not, head for the hills." Scams often go unreported because victims are too embarrassed to come forward."People don't want to admit that they've been had, and the emotional damage in a romance scam ...
For starters, plug their emails into a search engine. " Scammers can counterfeit anything from dating site profiles to photos, email addresses, even seemingly official documents. "There's no way you can verify what's on the other end of a keyboard," Williams said.
"If you're at the point where you think, 'I want to share my innermost secrets with this person,' you should meet the person within three days.
From DNA testing to personalized matchmaking, there's no shortage of services promising to help you find love — for a price.
But for those of us looking to go a cheaper route, there's a solution: the internet.
And, as it turns out, what we find attractive in a profile doesn't sync up with what we go for in the real world.
"People have elaborate laundry lists of qualities they think they want in a partner, and they like online dating profiles that fit this laundry list," Eastwick said.
"You should be sharing only information you'd be happy to share on a 35-foot billboard above your home," Williams said.
The scams are easy enough to dodge — all it takes is 15 minutes. It's how much money can we make, so how little can we put out?
The scammers are nasty, heartless, ruthless people. They run into problems — maybe an incident on the job site, or an accident involving a teenage son. "The scammers are so experienced in what they do, because they do what they do on such a massive scale," Williams said.
But they're good at what they do." And the stories are all too often the same. "They're running the same scam with 1,000 people at the same time." If you don't pony up the cash, the con artist could use your racy photos or adult-themed conversations to extort the money from you.
But can a formula determine whether two people will have a successful long-term relationship? According to market research company IBISWorld, the online dating industry made 3 million in Canada in 2014.