Romancing pro dating service

That’s particularly true if they’ve been through difficult circumstances, such as divorce, losing a job, serious illness and other major losses, says Doug Shadel, a fraud researcher and director of AARP Washington.It’s as if “their immune system to fraud” is weakened, Shadel said.Within a week the man calling himself John had captured Joanna’s heart with compliments, humor and declarations that she was the one.A few months later John had to travel to Africa for business — a common ruse that signals the start of trouble.And it allows victims to claim the loss on their taxes.Today Joanna advises others to do their research on potential dates, but most importantly to pay attention to their gut instincts.“I wish I’d listened to me. I wish I had listened to the Romance Scams support group,” Joanna said. thousands of dollars.”The best protection, experts say, is to cut off contact as soon as a prospective date acts suspiciously (see below for tips on spotting red flags).Because once they forge a bond with you — which can happen surprisingly fast — it can be very hard to break free.Discontinuing contact may sound “obvious and simple, but it isn’t always because they’ve fallen in love with this person,” the AARP’s Shadel said.

She estimated that she lost a total of 5,000, which required her to take out loans.Victim advocates say the true cost of romance scams is probably much higher than official estimates because victims, men in particular, often stay silent out of shame.Although older adults are often targeted — more than three-quarters of complaints to federal agencies came from people 40 and older — fraud experts say people of all ages and backgrounds can fall prey to romance scams.A few months after her husband’s death in 2012, Joanna — who asked her real name not be used to protect her privacy — went on looking for the soul mate she’d never had in her troubled marriage.She soon got a message from a man who said he was a widowed engineer from Colorado.

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