07.05.2019

From catfish to romance fraud, how to avoid getting caught in any online scam

Latest figures on romance fraud in Australia show victims lost more than A$24 million in 2018 cases reported to ScamWatch, run by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission. About A$19.5 million were loses reported by women.

While catfishing arguably uses the same types of deception and manipulation as romance fraud, the ultimate end goal is different. Those who catfish others online usually don’t have a financial motive.

Unfortunately, there are no known statistics on the prevalence of catfishing, so the extent of this type of victimisation is largely unknown. Catfishing itself is not a crime. It is only the deception associated with it that can be classed as fraud, and is therefore criminal.

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