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They will then ask the victim to pay, and if they do, the fraudster might also ask them to pay for the flight. "Fraudsters claim they have found a box containing gold, silver, money and jewels (or any one of them) in the desert and have sent it out of the country to set up a future together with the victim," said Action Fraud UK."However, this box is now stuck in (x) country’s customs.According to recent figures, these requests for cash appear to be working.There were 651 dating scams reported in the three months to August this year, with the average victim paying out £9,589."This includes never giving money to anyone – just as you would never give money to someone you recently met in a pub or café – and not sharing personal contact details that take conversations off the site," he said.Back in 2010, Brenda Parke, a 60-year-old retiree, was scammed out of £60,000 after joining an online dating site and befriending a man purporting to be a successful Dutch businessman called Bradford Cole.
Though hesitant, she eventually made the transfers and went on to send a further £44,500 to Mr Cole for various travel costs, accommodation, and to help him with his business.Usually there will be links or buttons on profiles to block or report individuals.• If you are a victim of dating fraud you can call Action Fraud on 03; actionfraud.Mr Cole told Ms Parke that he was a widower and that he had moved to Britain with his young daughter, Maureen.He said that while abroad on business, his daughter had been injured in a hit and run accident and he required £9,600 for the operation in hospital.