LValentine’s Day is another opportunity for scam artists to take advantage of Arkansans putting their heart and money on the line to find love. Con artists are using dating apps, often pretending to be someone they aren’t, with false pictures and information, to get the attention of others with the intent of stealing money from the kind-hearted people they meet on these sites.
“Arkansans should have the opportunity to meet new people without the fear of someone taking advantage of them and their wallets,” said Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge. “On dating sites, Arkansans must be cautious and keep personal information private. Con artists know how to play on emotions to convince people they need help when they are only wanting to steal money and identities to open credit accounts.”
Attorney General Rutledge released the following tips for social media users:
- It’s called personal information for a reason—keep it to yourself!
- Do not give out personal information such as addresses and telephone numbers.
- Consider speaking by telephone before meeting in person, and when meeting in person, make plans to meet new people in a public venue, or bring a friend.
- Don’t post any information that would let someone know you are away on vacation or your house is empty. Posting about being out of town for a few days could make someone a likely target for thieves.
- Don’t post any information that can lead hackers to passwords for online banking or other accounts. For example, common questions for those who have forgotten their passwords for financial or other sites include: “What’s your mother’s maiden name?” or “What’s your favorite pet?” Criminals may be able to find those answers easily on social networking sites.
The Attorney General’s office provides a tip card for consumers, information for parents to spot cyberbullying and offers a Parent’s Guide to Internet Safety. Community educators are also available to present an internet safety program to parents and educators across the state.
For more information and tips to avoid scams and other consumer-related issues, contact the Arkansas Attorney General’s office at (800) 482-8982 or firstname.lastname@example.org or visit ArkansasAG.gov or facebook.com/AGLeslieRutledge.