The Risks behind Social Media Invitations
Have you recently received an invitation to connect with someone you do not know on Facebook or Linkedin? Keep your eyes open! Social media sites have become the most popular platforms for fraud and scam online, beating others like online dating websites. This new method of approaching the potential victims is costing thousands of people money in Philippines online scams. But why?
People are so familiar with the social network grounds that they usually perceive it as harmless. Nothing too bad can happen just because you accepted a friend invitation from a Filipina you have never met before, right? Wrong! Social media sites are jammed with fraudulent profiles despite the efforts these sites are doing to fight against fake profiles and internet scammers.
Many of the requests for background checks that Philippine PI investigators receive nowadays come from people who met their romantic or potential business partner through a social network. Usually after exchanging several messages, people start getting more and more interested in building a relationship and the most important details are many times overlooked.
What are the most common signs of online fraud through social networks?
Sometimes there are some obvious signs that the person reaching out to you may not be honest and/or well-intended. But sometimes the signs are not so obvious. The following are some of the red signs that our private investigators in the Philippines would like to share so you can avoid being duped:
Un-natural connections: Receiving a friend request from someone from the other side of the world out of the blue is not a good sign. Most of the Filipina dating and romance scammers target people from the U.S., the U.K., Australia or Canada. The reason for that is simply that they can communicate in English, and they know there is a good chance that the person on the other side might have a decent financial situation. It is unlikely that someone from the Philippines with no apparent connections to you will find you and send an invitation just because they want to meet new people. There are usually strings attached, so be careful. Be skeptical of anyone you meet online.
Strange or few connections in their profile: Most active users of social networks will have more than 50 friends (or business connections if it is Linkedin). Be especially skeptical if you receive an invitation from a rather newly created profile with just a few friends, or if it seems like they do have a lot of friends but all of them are men and foreigners. Of course it can be someone who is just getting familiar with making friends online, but that is why you will need a background check in the Philippines to verify if this person is actually real. An big online presence can’t always be trusted either.
If you have already accepted an invitation and are beginning to consider getting serious (whether it is love or business), hire a professional private investigator in the Philippines who can verify the facts. Checking the identity of the person you have been communicating with through social networks can help you avoid internet dating and romance scams and will certainly help you avoid any financial trouble that could derive from them. Fraud and scam victims can tell you that they wish they had verified or got a background check investigation sooner. Finding out too late that a person or company is a fraud is a costly mistake, so investigators urge clients to start the process early.
Have you met someone new on social media recently? Contact us to verify.
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