Warning: Spoiler Alert

If you haven’t seen it, I’m sure you’ve seen conversations about it. The Tinder swindler tells the true story of three women who swiped right on Tinder thinking they’d met Prince Charming but ended up falling for a scammer instead.

What’s the documentary about?

The Tinder Swindler is a documentary about Simon Leviev who cons women by showing them a lavish lifestyle before he eventually swindles them. He generously invites women into his lifestyle, feeds them fancy dinners, and takes them on expensive trips. He then asks them for money and because they think he is “good for it”, they go as far as taking a loan for him. 

Online dating is a massively popular activity. It is also one of the easiest places to be conned. With matchmaking websites getting more and more popular, there are many scammers lurking around. Here’s how you can avoid falling into their traps. 

  • Avoid love interests that are too sweet too soon: If you barely know them and they are already professing love to you, there is a good chance that they are another Simon. We find that it is extremely common for online dating scammers to quickly “fall in love” with their victims. Most of the time, the victim receives an “I love you” or “this was meant to be” within the first week. These individuals try their best to fast forward things as quickly as possible so that they can make money off their victims. According to Telegraph, online dating scammers tend to move very quickly in terms of professing an emotional connection. The idea behind that is to make you fall in love so they can rip you off your money. 
  • Watch out for when they ask for money: You just met them online and they are suddenly hit with illness or are afraid of enemies and are in desperate need of financial help, this might be your cue to end things between you two. 
  • Don’t borrow money that will put a dent on your finances: Taking a loan to help someone out is a bad idea, especially if it puts a squeeze on your own finances. When deciding how much to lend someone, ask yourself if you can afford to give it as a gift. In other words, how much money can you afford to  lose without it hurting you financially? It helps you set some realistic boundaries for lending money to friends and family, so you don’t end up in the position of needing a loan yourself later. 
  • Don’t keep your suspicions to yourself: If you smell a rat or feel uncomfortable with the demands your partner is making, tell someone! Sometimes all you need is some outside perspective to set you straight .
  • Do not reveal sensitive information: Never reveal personal data to someone until you meet face-to-face and develop a level of trust. While it’s tempting to share every detail of your life with a person you think you could be in love with, that’s exactly what the scammer is counting on. Be very wary if your new flame starts asking for your home address or what bank you use or asks for your debit card info.

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