Unfortunately, if you have been scammed, the chances of recovering your money are not good.
If you are the victim of a financial scam or credit card scam, contact your bank immediately.
Scammers or fraudsters may be on dating sites and social networks setting up fake profiles.
Scammers may pose using fake pictures and claiming to be from New Zealand or working overseas.
Successful scammers are good at grooming you; they ask lots of questions about what you want in your life.
They will be thoughtful, caring and ‘looking for a soul mate’. Once they’ve taken all they can, your new love will disappear and your money will be gone.
Once the relationship is established, they will seek financial assistance. For example, scams where the victim is blackmailed using compromising photos or videos like in the ‘Ashley Madison’ case. No one wants to think that they could be taken advantage of by an internet dating scam and yet hundreds of people are every single year.
Visit Netsafe’s website Someone starts connecting with you through a dating service. The opportunity for blackmail may arise if you are persuaded into compromising situations and the scammer uses their webcam camera to capture images of you.
You get to know the person, perhaps over weeks or months. All of a sudden they request a short-term loan for some personal crisis. These images can be used later on to blackmail you.
This can also occur with naked photos that you send by mobile phone to others (‘sexting’).
A new ‘safe harbour’ complaints process has been set up for online hosts to follow under the Harmful Digital Communications Act.
This allows you to request the removal of harmful or illegal content posted by others.
If your service provider removes the content, then no criminal liability attaches to your online host or service provider.