TDCI: ‘Sweetheart’ Scammers Will Break Your Heart and Empty Your Wallet

TDCI: ‘Sweetheart’ Scammers Will Break Your Heart and Empty Your Wallet

NASHVILLE – With Valentine’s Day (Feb. 14, 2019) 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 to show your family simply how much you care, but it addittionally offers the perfect chance for unscrupulous people to make the most of naive customers through the use of emotion-provoking scam tactics, ” stated TDCI Commissioner Julie Mix McPeak. “We urge customers to be skeptical of deals that seem too advisable that you be real and people whom ask for cash through online dating sites. ”

The Division of Consumer Affairs offers the following to help Tennesseans avoid being a scammer’s sweetheart with Tennessee ranked 10 th in the nation for fraud


Relationship frauds, or “sweetheart” scams, are among the earliest tricks in many scammers’ playbooks. Unfortuitously, the increase of internet dating websites, mobile apps, and networking that is social have actually provided scammers a brand new method to deceive individuals into thinking their schemes. While genuine relationships are usually obtained online, scammers also utilize these internet sites and platforms to victim on naive victims. Scammers will generate profiles that are fake attract people and then utilize psychological techniques to get cash.

  • You meet some body on a site that is dating. The individual you’re interacting with straight away really wants to keep the dating internet site and begin interacting over individual e-mail or IM.
  • The claims that are individual quickly and things turn severe.
  • As the person claims become through the U.S., she or he additionally claims become working or traveling offshore.
  • Scammers use thoughts by simply making up elaborate tales about needing cash for travel mishaps, medical emergencies, lacking visas ( or other papers) or a temporary economic setback.
  • The scammers will ask for your help that is financial by them cash. The transfer that is first tiny, but it is accompanied by demands to get more.

Keep in mind: NEVER deliver money to an individual who is utilizing the above strategies or to some body you’ve never ever met in person.


Gift cards frauds are an increasingly common method for scammers to benefit down consumers with good intentions. This past year, Tennesseans lost nearly $1 million to present card scammers. Scammers will pose as an internet love interest or perhaps a remote household member confronted with a bind that is financial. As opposed to a cable transfer or cash, the scammers will persuade the buyer to buy present cards (frequently iTunes or Google Enjoy) and offer these with the redeemable rule on the back of the card. collarspace,com (this process is optimal for scammers since the scam is difficult to trace. ) Consumers whom get a ask for re re re payment utilizing iTunes present cards they think could be a fraud should report it into the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) at

  • Never read or text someone the PIN quantity regarding the straight straight back of something special card. The amount is really as good as money in the scammers’ pocket.
  • Reputable companies, like technology support organizations and shop-at-home services, don’t ask for present cards as re re payment. If you’re being expected by way of a caller to cover a service or product with something special card, continue with caution since it is most most likely a scam.
  • If you’re buying present cards as gift ideas, remember to purchase them from a professional and known supply.


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

  • Very Very Very Carefully review the termination date associated with the present card. Generally speaking, the termination date of something special card you buy must be at the very least 5 years following the date it absolutely was given to you personally underneath the rules associated with the FTC; additionally, the Tennessee customer Protection Act provides that an expiration must be had by a gift certificate date this is certainly at the very least couple of years following the present certification is granted.
  • You shouldn’t be charged a charge for the gift certification being given.
  • Within two years of buying the present certificate, you must not be charged solution charges (including dormancy costs, latency costs, or administrative costs) that decrease the total worth of this present certification.
  • These restrictions might not use to prepaid cards in making phone calls or at numerous, unaffiliated merchants or at ATMS. In addition they may well not connect with specific cards provided as client commitment honors, given away or offered below face value to charitable companies for fundraising, sold with a charity for fundraising purposes, directed at a manager by a worker for the employing business, or released by an company in recognition of solutions done by a member of staff.
  • When buying something special, be aware of always return policies and get for something special receipt.

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