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Consumers losing more money to romance scams than ever before

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MADISON (WKOW) -- As more and more people continue to use dating apps to find "the one," scammers are also using them to find "the one" they want to scam.

According to the Federal Trade Commission, consumers reported losing more than $200 million to romance scams in 2019. The FTC reports that's up 40 percent since 2018.

In fact, the number of romance scams people report to the FTC has nearly tripled since 2015 with the total amount of money people reported losing being 6 times higher than it was 5 years ago.

People reported losing more money to romance scams in the past two years than to any other fraud reported to the FTC.

In a sea of online profiles, it can be hard to pinpoint who's there for the wrong reasons, but there are still ways to catch them in the act.

If you've never met a match in person but they're working really hard to flatter you and gain your trust quickly, they could be gearing up for the financial ask.

If they do ask for money, the FTC says you shouldn't send anything and stop talking to them.

If consumers are still unsure, they can reverse image search the pictures on their profile or Google the job they said they have. Other people may be reporting similar stories of a person who says they are in the U.S. Army but end up scamming people instead.

Sara Maslar-Donar

Reporter, WKOW 27 News

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