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For example, Protect My ID scans the Internet daily, searching for fraudulent use of Social Security numbers and credit and debit accounts.If they spot illicit activity, they'll alert the member.While most people using online dating websites are genuine, charlatans comprise an uncomfortable proportion.According to Consumer Fraud Reporting.org, as much as 30 percent of online personalities are bogus. Because, says Donna Andersen, of Egg Harbor Township, N.Most need funds fast and press you to commit before thinking, Anderson says. They'll proclaim their love for you while they are taking your money." Schemes mutate with the times, and a recent one targets online daters looking for employment or better income.A "match" claiming to be able to help directs the person to a fictitious company website.Robert Siciliano, an identity theft expert and consultant for the security company Intelius, has posted fictitious profiles on dating websites for his job and says it's never long before a potential thief is in contact and professing love. They tell me how much they miss me and think about me." Then, says Siciliano, "they are in your home, rifling through your drawers, getting your account information." Dating services efforts Of course, online dating companies strive for customer protection.For instance, Pasadena, Calif.-based dating site e Harmony's publishes safety tips on their home page, in "5 Dating Rules You Should Never Break," including "if a potential date's actions or words set off an internal alarm system, you owe it to yourself to pay attention and act accordingly." Encounter a con?
A study about online dating and credit habits by Protect My ID.com, Experian's identity theft protection program, found that nearly half of the respondents never verify the authenticity of their chat mates, and nearly 10 percent actually sent them their Social Security numbers or bank account information.Use the computer advantageously, says Jennifer Leuer, general manager for Protect My ID."Google their names, check them out on [social networking website] Linked In or use the Net's white pages." As you're investigating, make your own profile mysterious.Your credit and other financial interests may be at risk if you don't guard yourself from those falsely fishing for companionship.Here's how to protect more than just your heart when seeking a mate via the Internet.Online dating services can be a terrific and efficient way to find love.However, due to the anonymous nature of the process, hazards abound.The applicant then enters his Social Security number and other personal and financial data, which the thief uses to open new credit and loan accounts.Other scammers postpone their crimes until the real life meet-up.In response, she founded Lovefraud.com, a resource to help others detect and recover from romance con artists.More, sharing personal details is intrinsic to forming a relationship, but it also can expose you to fraud, says Paul Falzone CEO of Norwell, Mass.-based e Love, one of the world's largest brick-and-mortar dating services.