Online dating platforms have been increasing very fast from “chat rooms” in early days to MSN to facebook, and smart phones have now become the mainstream. While all kinds of dating communication software (“App” in short) are springing up like mushrooms, many criminals are also trying to use App to cheat. According to the statistics published by 165 anti-fraud hotline, there were 16 fraud cases related to dating App between November 1 and December 16, 2012 and the number is on a rising trend. It is urged that people like to use online dating App should watch out for the possible traps.
Mr. Chen, a man living in Taipei, used the (iAround) App and met Miss Liu, a good-looking girl, on this dating platform, where they had several good chats. Miss Liu unexpectedly told Mr. Chen on the 17th last month that she was moonlighting for compensated dating and asked whether he would like to date her out and pay her money. Mr. Chen promised and then received calls from a man named himself as“Lei Bao”, who demanded Mr. Chen to buy game points as a token of identity confirmation. Mr. Chen was thus forced to buy from five (5) convenience stores game points worth of NT$ 113,000 and used up all his savings. Lei Bao threatened to send 20 gangsters to get money from him if he stopped buying game points! Mr. Chen was so frightened that he reported the case to the police and found the whole incident was nothing but a hoax.
Miss Chen, a college student in Kaohsiung, met Mr. Wu nicknamed ''Dum Dum'' in November on the same dating platform. Mr. Wu was quite humorous and they interacted with each other pretty well. Mr. Wu said he was going to divorce his wife and paid Miss Chen NT$50,000 every month to have her as his mistress. Miss Chen did not respond clearly to the request but continued App dating with him anyway. One day, Mr. Wu told Miss Chen that his brother-in-law was hospitalized because of a traffic accident and needed NT$3,000 so badly that he would like to date with Miss Chen for money. Thereafter, Mr. Wu cheated Miss Chen to buy pre-paid phone cards and pay telephone bills for him and then disappeared. Miss Chen was cheated of NT$7,848 in total. Mr. Wu was arrested by the police later and confessed that he noticed that a lot of young people were using Dating App and thus chose his targets over the platform.
It is very difficult to verify the identity of a person on the Internet. Thus, many gangsters use it to cheat. Their typical scheme is using beautiful women, money, compensated dating, and purchase of game points to induce those naive young people. Once anyone takes the bait, the gangsters will begin to cheat or threaten him/her to pay handsomely. Criminal Police Office urges our citizens to watch out for the hidden traps in online dating. If financial assistance and abnormal gifts are mentioned, be alert. (Source: Criminal Police Office)