One in six online daters have fallen victim to a romance scam

Research conducted by Opinium on behalf of Barclays shows how rapid trust can be forged online between people who have never met.

Accurately judging the trustworthiness of someone you essentially don’t know is often a challenge for online daters. In our survey, those who date online say they gauge trustworthiness by the content of messages (41%), by hobbies and interests (35%), by appearances in photos (28%) and by social media profiles (26%).

Over two in five (43%) online daters say they would trust someone they have met through a dating app or site in 2 weeks or less of making first contact, before even meeting them.

Similarly, over a quarter (27%) of online daters would lend money to someone they were speaking to via a dating app for an alleged ‘medical emergency’, of which the average amount lent comes to £270.

Reflecting on the definition of romance scam, “occurring when the victim is convinced to make a payment to a person they have met online and with whom they believe they are in a relationship”, one in six (16%) online daters say they have lost money this way, which is higher in men (19%) than it is women (12%).

To find out more click here, and to get access to the tables you can click here.