The world of romance has changed drastically over the years, and with the emergence of new technology, it is now easier than ever to find love. However, this newfound ease also comes with a dark side: Romance scams facilitated by AI.
This type of scam involves using artificial intelligence to create fake profiles and manipulate victims into sending money or personal information. Unfortunately, these scams are becoming increasingly common and sophisticated as scammers take advantage of unsuspecting people looking for love online. From deep fakes,
According to American Federal Tade Commission, some of the scary statistics are:
- 80% YoY Increase in Romance Scams
- $1.3+ Billion Lost only in 2021
- $2400 as a Median Loss in Romance Scams
As AI is advancing in leaps and valentine's day in front of us, we are here to caution the singles, the hopeless romantics, and all the unsuspecting people online to be aware of how AI can be used in these romance scams.
AI Chatbots can be used to create fake online profiles that look like real people and talk to the victims. These chatbots can be so advanced to emotionally lure the victims into a relationship.
They pretend to be real people and talk to the victims. They use special computer programs that can act like real people so they seem believable. These chatbots can also make victims feel a certain way so they are more likely to give out their money or personal information.
What is worst is these AI chatbots can be used AT SCALE to engage millions of people and then detect the ones who can potentially fall into the romance scams. AI is helping scammers to scale their efforts in a fraction of the time.
Deep fakes are a type of artificial intelligence technology that can be used to manipulate or fabricate images and videos. Deep fakes use machine learning algorithms to take existing images and videos and replace them with someone else’s face or voice.
Imagine all your photos and videos on your favorite social media platforms being combined to create a deep fake persona of a real person, to engage with potential victims.
This can not only harm people who are being lured into the romance scam but also damage someone's reputation if their photos and videos are being used to create fake personas.
Such fraudsters typically claim to be living abroad due to a career-related job which makes it impossible for victims to meet them in person or do any real background checks. Furthermore, deep fakes allow romance scammers to furnish false evidence that appears legitimate, while potentially causing psychological distress if they appear too realistic.
These fake identities can be used by scammers to build trust with their victims, and ultimately rob them of their money. It is important for those looking for a relationship online to stay vigilant and question any details offered which appear too good to be true.
Voice cloning is a technology that creates counterfeit conversations where an artificial voice imitates somebody’s own voice.
As controversial as it may seem, cybercriminals have started taking advantage of this technology to deploy romance scams in dating websites and apps. The perpetrators have the tools to pretend to be someone else through digital impersonations – with nothing more than a pre-recorded conversation and some knowledge of the victim’s life.
This advanced technology has been weaponized by internet scammers to deceive victims into believing they’re speaking with someone they love or trust. The scammer then uses the reproduced voice to emotionally manipulate their victim into sending them money and sensitive information.
Being vigilant about voice cloning scams is key to protecting your private information and financial safety.
Knowing how to recognize a scammer is the best way to prevent becoming a victim of these types of fraud. Common indicators of a scam include fraudulent "emergency" requests for money or personal details, requests that you pay in a non-traditional manner such as gift cards, promises of large sums of money in return for minimal effort, and unexpected business offers.
Be suspicious if someone claims to represent a large company and gives them away by making unbelievable offers or conflicting statements. If something doesn't seem quite right, take the time to investigate further or check with an independent third party before taking any action. Remain alert and never provide your personal information or money until you know who you are dealing with and are sure that their intentions are legitimate.
AI can be used to generate predictive text responses that are tailored to the individual victim. It can be used to tailor responses based on the victim's information, creating a feeling of connection with someone they think they know. This technology can make it harder to recognize that you're talking to a scammer until it's too late and money has already been given.
Generally, the scammer will collect as much information as possible about their target before engaging in conversation. Therefore, these conversations may feel uncanny at times, like the person knows you better than they should.
To protect yourself from being taken advantage of in this way, it’s important to always remain alert and vigilant when communicating with anyone who appears to have too much knowledge about you or who seems to anticipate your reactions in a familiar way.
Data Analytics for Emotional Manipulation
AI technology is being used to analyze behavioral patterns and identify when a person is at greater risk of falling prey to fraud, especially in cases of emotional manipulation.
Such AI tools are able to identify predictable emotional patterns in a person's behavior by studying their available data. For example, by analyzing a person's social media presence or past purchases and interactions with other companies.
With this data, cybercriminals can create targeted scams that are more likely to succeed in persuading their victims.
Precautionary Measures to Fight Against Romance Scams
As a precautionary measure for those looking for love online, it's important to follow some simple steps.
First, don't click on suspicious links in emails or text messages from people you don't know as this could be an AI.
Additionally, always video chat with a potential romantic partner instead of only communicating through text messages. But beware that with the help of deep fakes, video chats can be manipulated as well. Look for the signs mentioned above to recognize deep fakes.
If the messages seem overly charming and profess undying love for you out of the blue, be extra cautious as these are signs of an AI robot scammer trying to manipulate you.
Never send money or personal data to someone you haven’t verified is an actual person. Be sure to double-check if the information provided by the other person is true or not - do your research!
Lastly, consider using secure authentication methods when meeting someone online for the first time to ensure your safety. While AI romance scams are complex and difficult to detect, following these battle-tested tips should help protect yourself against them.
AI is a force for Good at Chargeflow
Apart from romance scams, there is another hefty fraud that people commit with online merchants: Chargebacks.
At Chargeflow.io, we use AI to fight those fraudulent chargebacks and help merchants save their time, money, and peace of mind.
Chargeflow.io is the world's first automated chargeback management solution specifically designed for eCommerce merchants.
By utilizing Big Data and deep integration with your business, we are able to produce the most comprehensive chargeback evidence in the world, custom-tailored to your store, and send it on your behalf.
Ultimately, we use our proprietary AI to help online merchants run and scale their businesses without worrying about chargebacks.