Be cautious around new friends

Relationship tricksters

What to look out for:  Online contacts with a keen interest in you, your personal circumstances and information.

Criminals trawl the internet and send “phishing” emails to obtain the sort of private information that makes it easier for them to defraud victims. They are also increasingly befriending people on social media, striking up a relationship online before openly asking for money.

Fraudsters who commit ‘romance’ or ‘relationship’ fraud will build confidence over time and then eventually ask for cash, concocting worthy causes such as a struggling business or ailing relative.

A reformed fraudster reveals his tactics

Research it

“If you say you are in banking, watch the websites, when she asks ‘have you had a good day’ you can say yes/no because you know the markets have gone up or down.”

Simple rules

“Find something to say, find common interests to talk about, research them, where they live, everything they talk about. Have a story, a good one and live it. Gradually add a few problems, softly, softly, don’t overdo it“


Know Fraud leaflet (2MB PDF)

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