Valentine’s Day is today, the best day of the year to discuss romance scams. As we all know in this ever evolving world of technology, contacting people, real or fake, has become extremely easy. This comes with both pros and cons (obviously). You can get in touch with a loved one with the press of a button, or contact the president of the United States via Twitter! (Do not try at home! Unless you want to become a meme. “Very Cool Kanye”) The purpose behind this technology is to make communication easier and more efficient for everybody. The problem is, the easiness and efficiency allows for a whole new type of threat: scammers.
I’m sure all of you are familiar with scams in some sort of fashion (robo-calls, spam mail, Instagram DM’s, etc.) but this new type of scam attacks a person’s most vulnerable characteristic. Love. They (the scammers) create emotional bonds with their “victims” and after a certain amount of time, request money for some kind of imaginary emergency. These scams are basically emotional catfishing (to put it simply) and have taken more money from people than any type of fraud last year (CNN).
So the question you should be asking is, “How do I avoid this?” Well, definitely do not wire money to people you don’t know (assuming you go to Savannah Arts, I think you are smart enough to know this). Also, do not assume the “emotional bond” you have with a person you’ve met online is realistic, especially if they claim to have feelings in a short amount of time.
Being lonely on Valentine’s day can be rough (trust me, I know), but save yourself (another) heartache by keeping your money, and buy yourself some chicken nuggets or candy. You may regret it later but you will enjoy it in the moment. Get a 30 count Chic-Fil-A heart shaped nugget box for $17.69.