Kentuckians lost nearly $300,000 last year to “catfishing”


FRANKFORT, Ky. (Feb. 5, 2018) – The Attorney General of Kentucky is warning those who turn to online dating sites and social media to find love and friendship.

In advance of Valentine’s Day, Attorney General Andy Beshear has issued a warning about online ‘catfishing’ scams.

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Last year, Beshear says his office received reports from 11 Kentuckians who said they lost nearly $300,000 after being “catfished” by an online scammer.

According to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), reports of romance scams have tripled over the past five years and in 2016, $220 million was lost nationwide to online dating scams.

The FTC and Beshear’s office recommend never sending untraceable methods of payment to anyone you just met online, and to watch for signs often associated with romance or friendship scams, including someone who:

• Falls in love, or befriends quickly.
• Says they are working overseas or serving abroad in the military.
• Asks you to leave the official dating, or social media site to communicate.
• Claims they need money for an emergency and says they will pay you back when they come to meet you.