If you’re single, you’ve probably tried to browse a few dating apps to try and find someone that you love. If you’ve ever done this, you’ve probably come across a few scammers that you’ve had conversations with, but it never progressed any further. These scammers are especially abundant on Plenty of Fish (POF). In POF scams, the scammer will begin contacting you as if they were interested in meeting you and becoming acquainted with you.
What is POF and How are Scammers Able to Get Away with Catfishing on it?
PlentyOfFish is an online dating service that is popular in the U.S. and many European countries. It is free to use POF, but they do offer premiums where you can pay to use special features, like being able to see who viewed your profile and also see when someone has read a message you sent. You can download the mobile app with your iPhone or Android.
Catfishing on POF is when someone pretends to be someone they aren’t on the dating site. In a lot of cases, these scammers will steal photos from other profiles and pass them up as their own. This is why it’s always good to know the signs of a POF scam.
How POF Scams Work
The most common way people are catfished on POF is to get money out of them using the 419 Nigerian Scam. With our users, pof.com was the site with the most catfish. This is based on our current and previous customers, and we’ve also seen that the larger the site, the more of a target it is. Also, free sites tend to have a higher percentage of catfish.
When they feel that you’re close enough, they ask you to send them money. They will use a sob story which usually involves them being stuck overseas without money because they haven’t been paid yet, or had money stolen from them.
A scammer’s excuses are usually along the lines of “I’m stuck in a foreign city and lost my wallet,” or “I need money for government taxes,” things along these lines. They never ask you to send them the money directly to them or their bank, always to a third party – that way the money doesn’t get traced.
Some people don’t scam for money either; some aim to hurt you physically and emotionally, by using you for personal pleasure or even stalking you. These instances are less common, but they still happen, and you never know who you might encounter.
Signs You’re Being Catfished on Plenty of Fish!
- The user’s personal story seemed far-fetched and made up.
- Their picture seems very generic, and there are only a couple of pictures on his profile.
- They never try to meet you in person.
- They rush to get you off pof.com and onto email or another platform.
- They ask you for money (dead giveaway!).
- For more signs click here.
How to Avoid POF Scams
- Use common sense! Know the signs and always be informed on the latest POF scams.
- Control the situation. Don’t let them dictate how you guys communicate.
- Trust your instincts: If it seems fishy, it probably is.
- Don’t ever send money to someone you just met overseas. Even if you’ve known them for a while but, have never met, be wary.
- If going on a date, make sure you go to a popular place that should be crowded and always tell someone where you’ll be. Sounds crazy but you never know what to expect.