Day Beware of ‘sweetheart’ scams this Valentine’s

NASHVILLE – With Valentine’s Day fast approaching, the Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance’s (TDCI) Division of customer Affairs reminds Tennesseans to be skeptical of ‘sweetheart’ scammers who claim to love you but, the truth is, are just after your cash.

“Valentine’s Day is an occasion showing your family simply how much you care, but it addittionally offers the opportunity that is perfect unscrupulous people to make the most of unsuspecting customers through the use of emotion-provoking scam tactics,” stated TDCI Commissioner Julie Mix McPeak. “We urge customers to keep clear of deals that seem too good to be real and people whom ask for the money through online dating sites.”

With Tennessee rated 10 th within the country for fraudulence , the Division of customer Affairs supplies the after to greatly help Tennesseans avoid being fully a scammer’s sweetheart:

INTERNET DATING SCAMS union frauds, or “sweetheart” scams, are among the earliest tricks in many scammers’ playbooks. Unfortuitously, the increase of online dating sites internet sites, mobile apps, and networking that is social have offered scammers an alternative way to fool individuals into thinking their schemes. While genuine relationships are usually obtained online, scammers also make use of these internet sites and platforms to victim on naive victims. Scammers will generate fake pages to attract people and then utilize psychological techniques to get cash.

  • You meet some body for a dating website. The individual you’re interacting with instantly really wants to keep the dating website and begin interacting over individual e-mail or IM.
  • The individual claims love quickly and things turn severe.
  • As the person claims become through the U.S., she or he additionally claims become traveling or working offshore.
  • Scammers use thoughts by simply making up elaborate tales about requiring cash for travel mishaps, medical emergencies, lacking visas ( or other papers) or a short-term monetary setback.
  • The scammers will ask for the economic assistance by wiring them cash. The transfer that is first tiny, but it is accompanied by needs for lots more.

Keep in mind: NEVER deliver money to somebody who is making use of the tactics that are above to somebody you’ve never ever met face-to-face.


Present cards frauds are a way that is increasingly common scammers to benefit down customers with good motives. This past year, Tennesseans lost nearly $1 million to present card scammers. Scammers will pose as an on-line love interest or perhaps a remote household user confronted with a economic bind. As opposed to a cable transfer or money, the scammers will persuade the customer to acquire present cards (frequently iTunes or Google Enjoy) and offer these with the code that is redeemable the rear of the card. (this process is optimal for scammers as the scam is difficult to locate.) Customers whom get an obtain re re payment utilizing iTunes present cards they think can be a fraud should report it to your Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”).

  • Never read or text someone the PIN quantity regarding the straight straight straight back of a present card. The amount can be as good as money in the scammers’ pocket.
  • Reputable companies, like technology help organizations and shop-at-home services, don’t ask for present cards as re payment. If you’re being expected by a caller to cover a service or product with a present card, continue with caution since it is most most likely a scam.
  • If you’re buying present cards as gift ideas, be sure to get them from an established and understood source.


Considering gift that is purchasing or reduced solutions for Valentine’s Day? keep in mind:

  • Very Very Carefully review the termination date associated with present card. Generally speaking, the termination date of something special card you get ought to be at the least 5 years following the date it absolutely was granted for your requirements underneath the guidelines of this FTC ; additionally, the Tennessee customer Protection Act provides that a present certification should have an termination date this is certainly at the least couple of years following the present certification is granted.
  • You must never be charged a payment for the present certification being granted.
  • Within 2 yrs of buying the present certification, you ought not be charged solution costs (including dormancy costs, latency costs, or administrative costs) that lessen the total worth regarding the present certification.
  • These limitations may well not use to prepaid cards to make phone calls or at numerous, unaffiliated merchants or at ATMS. In addition they may well not connect with particular cards offered as client loyalty prizes, distributed or offered below face value to charitable businesses for fundraising, offered with a charity for fundraising purposes, directed at a company by a member of staff for the employing business, or released by an company in recognition of solutions done by a worker.
  • When buying a present, be aware of always return policies and have for a present receipt.
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