Many times, scammers create profiles online using other people’s pictures.
Consumers can use a reverse image search on Google to see if the photo was used online publicly elsewhere, Stokes said.
Sometimes, they may even use a photo of someone in the military. Never send money to someone claiming to be a U.S. soldier.
Larson said someone who is lonely can be a prime target but the one thing he realized is that you should never send money, ever, to someone you meet online.
“I wouldn’t have sent a dime,” he said, when asked what he would do differently now.
ABOUT THE WRITER
Susan Tompor is the personal finance columnist for the Detroit Free Press.