Last month, the Center for Crime Prevention and Security, together with the Ministry of Justice and Security, online dating provider Match Group, the Online Dating Association, the Fraud Helpdesk, Slachtofferhulp Nederland and the Municipality of Amsterdam, launched the ‘Check your date!’ campaign to educate daters on how to spot signs of romance fraud and better protect themselves online. The campaign will run through February 28, one of the busiest times of year on dating platforms.
One form of online dating fraud is when someone on a dating site, website, social media or online game forms a relationship with you using a fake profile in order to get your money or personal information. Being aware of potential signs of romance fraud can alert you to a scam in progress. As Mila Cassée, adviser to the CCV, noted, some signals are when “in addition to asking for money, they are overwhelming you with love and they don’t want to make video calls.” If you suspect that you have been the victim of a scam, report it to the Fraud Helpdesk and the police and call Slachtofferhulp Nederland for help and support.
Check your date!
As part of the campaign, experts from Fraudehelpdesk and Victim Support Netherlands will share tips on how to recognize online scammers.
If you suspect someone you’re communicating with online may be using a fake profile, here are some initial steps to take:
1. Check their name and/or photo in an online search engine, such as Google Image or Yandex.
2. Ask your date for a video call. If they’re unwilling to get on video or meet in real life, that can be an indication they are not using a real profile.
3. Tell your friends and family about the person you’re communicating with and hear what they think.
4. Do not send the person money, gift cards or engage in any financial transactions.
Over the next few months, Match Group is running romance fraud protection banners on Tinder and Lexa that will point users to the latest safety resources, guidelines, and information. During the same period, Match Group will also promote Facebook and Instagram awareness campaigns to better protect their members against the risks posed by romance fraud.
If you think you may be a victim yourself or or need more information, visit hetccv.nl/dating.
The campaign is a collaboration between the Center for Crime Prevention and Security (CCV), the Ministry of Justice and Security, Victim Support Netherlands, the Fraud Helpdesk and Match Group. The Center for Crime Prevention and Security (CCV) is an independent foundation that helps parties in the security domain and security professionals to make the Netherlands safer and more liveable. For more information, visit www.hetccv.nl.