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The profiles were fake as well, carefully crafted to match your interests.In addition to losing your money to someone who had no intention of ever visiting you, you may also have unknowingly taken part in a money laundering scheme by cashing phony checks and sending the money overseas and by shipping stolen merchandise (the forwarded package).Before forwarding the complaints to the appropriate agencies, IC3 collates and analyzes the data—looking for common threads that could link complaints together and help identify the culprits. Here are some tips on how to avoid becoming a victim of an online dating scam.

So you send money..rest assured the requests won’t stop there.

There will be more hardships that only you can help alleviate with your financial gifts.

But as Valentine’s Day gets closer, the FBI wants to warn you that criminals use these sites, too, looking to turn the lonely and vulnerable into fast money through a variety of scams..

These criminals—who also troll social media sites and chat rooms in search of romantic victims—usually claim to be Americans traveling or working abroad. While their most common targets are women over 40 who are divorced, widowed, and/or disabled, but every age group and demographic is at risk. You’re contacted online by someone who appears interested in you.

In another recently reported dating extortion scam, victims usually met someone on an online dating site and then were asked to move the conversation to a particular social networking site, where the talk often turned intimate.

Victims were later sent a link to a website where those conversations were posted, along with photos, their phone numbers, and claims that they were “cheaters.” In order to have that information removed, victims were told they could make a payment—but there is no indication that the other side of the bargain was upheld.

Looking for love but struggling to negotiate the cultural norms for striking up a conversation with that local babe at the bar?

Allow the Go Overseas cupid to sort you out with the lowdown on crossing the International Date Line (if you catch our drift! Love is in the air and we just couldn't resist finding out all of the ways that we can share it.

This may be self-explanatory, but in most modern societies this isn’t really acceptable (at least butter 'em up and take them on a few dates before you put a bag over their head).

However, in traditional Roma culture, the guys quite literally bag the girl.

In traditional Welsh culture, young lovebirds give and receive "lovespoons" as a symbol of their adoration.