Millions of women use online dating sites. They’re all ages and have various goals. Some want a casual hookup, while others want lifelong romance and a perfect partner.

If you’re using social media or online dating sites, maybe you’re doing that because you feel lonely. Most people feel way from time to time. You may find someone you like or love, and they’ll combat that loneliness when you spend time together.

Dishonest individuals can use your feelings against you, though. We’ll talk about that in the following article.

Scammers Lurk on Dating Sites

If you’re seeking love or a physical connection, you might use a site like OkCupid, Tinder, Bumble, or eHarmony. These platforms provide nearly limitless possibilities, but scammers use them as their hunting grounds as well.

eHarmony scams happen more than you might realize, and they happen on virtually every other site too. Scammers set up shop by creating profiles and then wait for the unsuspecting. When you swipe right, that starts the process. They may contact you as well.

Who Do These Scammers Target?

A scammer might target any woman on social media or a dating app, but many times, they’ll notice certain details when deciding whether you’re a possible mark. They often target middle-aged women. They also message women who mention they’re widowed, divorced, or separated.

They feel that women coming off of relationships make better targets. They suspect these women want companionship. Maybe they’re feeling lonely if they divorced someone, if their former spouse died, or if they’re getting out of a long-term relationship and feeling unappreciated.

Women with Kids

They also target women with kids. They do this because they suspect if you’re a single mom, you might feel undervalued. Your kids may demand a lot, and you don’t have a partner helping you with meal prep, driving the kids to school, saying you still look desirable, and so forth.

Does This Selection Process Work?

Of course, this does not describe every single mom, nor does it accurately describe every divorced or separated woman. It does not describe every widow. 

Many of these women aren’t the vulnerable prey these scammers want. Many still go into new relationships with their eyes wide open, and they won’t become victims when a scammer shows their true colors.

Scammers can usually pick out a potential target after a few interactions, though. If they feel a particular woman isn’t vulnerable, they’ll back off and seek easier prey. They want someone who’s not particularly confident. They want someone who projects loneliness or vulnerability. These women sometimes use dating sites, and they’re just the targets someone unscrupulous needs.

What Do These Predators Do?

These scammers usually turn on the charm. They flirt through messages and sometimes send tantalizing photos. They might draw you out, so you’ll meet with them in person.

They usually dress nicely and compliment you. They might pay for the first meal you share together. They may also ask that you pay to see whether you’ll willingly do so. They’re trying to see whether you have money and whether you will spend it on them.

These scammers usually want money and expensive gifts. They’ll try making you emotionally dependent, and they’ll want financial compensation for their time and affection. They want a situation where you need their emotional support, but they’ll withdraw it if you don’t pay for their car, give them cash gifts, give them jewelry, pay for their groceries, etc.

Ultimately, these individuals use emotional manipulation whenever they can. If they encounter a strong woman who won’t tolerate this behavior, they’ll withdraw and find someone more susceptible. Unfortunately, some women fall for these tactics and respond the way these manipulators want.

How Can You Avoid These Scammers?

You can usually tell someone’s intentions on dating platforms or social media sites before too long. Someone who contacts you might want money to come and see you. They’ll claim they need the cash for a plane ticket or bus fare to come to your city.

These catfishing scams don’t usually ever reach a face-to-face interaction stage. The persona communicating with you probably doesn’t exist. Maybe they’ll send you pictures, but that’s not really them. It’s a total fabrication.

The better dating platforms don’t allow this behavior, though. They vet their members more thoroughly. If you ever have someone demand money or gifts before you ever meet them, you should never agree, and you should report them as well. The app’s admins will hopefully kick them off so they can’t scam anyone else.

More frequently, this person exists, and they will willingly meet with you in person, but they want money and gifts. They’ll involve themselves with you because they know emotional or physical connections helps their cause.

Go Slowly

Usually, you can find out someone’s intentions you meet through a dating site by taking things slowly. Maybe you meet someone charming and feel a possible connection, but you tell them you don’t want anything too serious too fast.

If they are trustworthy, they’ll immediately agree. They won’t press you, and they certainly won’t demand money or gifts. They’ll reveal personal details, and you can confirm those on your own by Googling this person or using a free person lookup tool.

A scammer usually gets impatient and betrays their intentions quickly. If you’re cautious, they’ll feel you’re too savvy, and they’ll hastily find another, easier target.

Even if you got on social media or a dating site because you feel lonely, that doesn’t mean you must jump headlong into any relationship that presents itself. If you keep your wits about you and proceed cautiously, you can usually avoid the unscrupulous individuals who use these sites and apps to target the vulnerable and unsuspecting.

Let things unfold at their own pace, and use your best judgment. Often, your instincts prove correct. If someone seems just a little too charming, they might have cruel intentions. Stay alert, and don’t become a victim.