Online Dating Scams a High Risk on Valentine’s Day, Warn Russia PI Investigators

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Russia PI™ advises internet users to be extra cautious during the Valentine's Day holiday, when internet criminals target online dating and social networking sites.

Russia Private Investigators

Russia PI™ Trademark

Near the Valentine’s Day holiday, private detectives caution internet users to be extra cautious with attachments in emails, clicking on links in emails, and when meeting new contacts in cyberspace.

Russia PI™, a professional private investigation company based in the United States specializing in Russia and the Ukraine, warns that subscribers of online dating and social networking sites should be extra cautious during the Valentine’s Day holiday. Investigators at the firm say although it’s important to always be skeptical in online relationships and to protect your private data at all times, the holiday is when criminals are more active, placing internet users at much greater risk for online dating scams and internet fraud than normal.

Moscow field investigators are in a good position to measure the risk. Demand for investigations are up 35% at the firm compared to 2012 levels, and investigators say the increased demand reflects a corresponding rise in Russian dating scams. With fraud levels rising, more clients are contacting reputable private investigation companies such as Russia PI™ to verify online contacts, especially those met via online dating websites and social networking sites. Investigators emphasize that no dating or social networking site is completely immune from fraud, so it’s important to verify.

Near the Valentine’s Day holiday, private detectives caution internet users to be extra cautious with attachments in emails, clicking on links in emails, and when meeting new contacts in cyberspace. Never send money to someone you’ve never met in person, and never provide your personal data, such as full name, address or date of birth, to someone you’ve recently met online. Internet criminals based in countries such as Russia and the Philippines do everything possible to obtain this information, which can then be used against victims in extortion, identity theft and romance scam cases.

Private detectives, privacy experts and law enforcement agencies around the world agree that protecting your privacy online should be a top priority in keeping you safe on the internet. Dating background checks are an important and effective tool in verifying the identity of persons met online. For online dating, international investigators can verify the subject’s known information and screen the case for fraud, so you can be sure the person you’re communicating with is who he or she claims to be.

The online dating industry is booming, and social networking sites now host millions of users. People are increasingly meeting on the internet, and investigators say the relationships inherently carry more risk than meeting someone in person. As a result, the demand for professional verification services is also up. International investigations and due diligence services help clients avoid fraud and romance scams, which frequently originate from Russia, the Ukraine, Malaysia, Ghana and other high risk countries. Management at the company reports that rising demand in both online relationships and online scams is fueling growth. “More clients are relying on our services to verify individuals in Eastern Europe they’ve met in online dating,” said Charles Alden, President and CEO. “With our team on the ground in Moscow and St. Petersburg, we’re able to minimize risk for our clients.”

About Russia PI™

Russia PI, LLC is a leader in professional private investigations in Russia and the Ukraine. The company offers discreet Russia background checks, due diligence, asset searches and dating investigations. The firm is verified by McAfee, Truste and the Better Business Bureau, and is a subsidiary of Wymoo® International in the United States. http://www.russiapi.com.

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Tom Burnett
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