You meet someone you are interested in on a dating app. The person sends you explicit photos of themselves and asks you to reply with your own revealing pictures. The FTC reports that this particular scam is especially common on LGBTQ+ dating apps, such as Grindr and Feeld.
If you send the images or videos, the scammer then begins to blackmail you. Scammers use your phone number or social media profile to look up names of your friends, family members, and even your workmates or boss. Then, they threaten to send those pictures to your contacts.
According to one BBB Scam Tracker report, after a compromising video call, a woman began “blackmailing me, [threatening] to release the video footage on social media and send it to my friends and family. [Then] a guy took over blackmailing. They were demanding a sum of $3000.”
Scammers often ask for payment via gift card or wired funds – methods that can’t be traced to them and make it impossible for you to recuperate your funds. If you cooperate, you’ll lose your money, and there’s no guarantee the scammers will delete the images and videos. In fact, scammers will likely continue contacting you, asking for more money periodically.
How to Avoid Event Scams:
- Never share your personal information with someone you just…