How do you avoid opening your heart — and your wallet — to a princess too charming to be true? Start by taking these precautions.
Never reveal personal data to someone until you meet face-to-face and develop a level of trust. While it’s tempting to share every detail of your life with a person you think you could be in love with, that’s exactly what the scammer is counting on.
Upload a potential paramour’s photo on tineye.com. This will allow you to see where on the Internet the photo has appeared. Many con artists use a photo they’ve swiped from a Facebook page.
Be suspicious if someone wants to immediately start communicating through IM and e-mail. They may want access to your computer in order to steal information.
Don’t open attachments from a stranger. If someone sends you a photo in an attachment and you open it, you may have unwittingly allowed a virus to infect your computer.
Don’t fall for a sob story. Many scammers claim to have lost a spouse, child, or parent in an accident or say they have a relative who is very ill.
Dial up your date ASAP. Someone who sounds plausible online may be an obvious fraud on the phone or SKYPE.
Report any suspicious behavior.
Never, ever wire money to a stranger.
Source: Reader’s Digest