Last Updated on by SCARS Editorial Team

Reporting Romance ScamsScams A Scam is a confidence trick - a crime -  is an attempt to defraud a person or group after first gaining their trust through deception. Scams or confidence tricks exploit victims using their credulity, naïveté, compassion, vanity, irresponsibility, or greed and exploiting that. Researchers have defined confidence tricks as "a distinctive species of fraudulent conduct ... intending to further voluntary exchanges that are not mutually beneficial", as they "benefit con operators ('con men' - criminals) at the expense of their victims (the 'marks')". A scam is a crime even if no money was lost.: Why SurvivorsSurvivor A Scam Survivor is a victim who has been able to fully accept the reality of their situation. That they were the victim of a crime and are not to blame. They are working on their emotional recovery and reduction of any trauma either on their own, through a qualified support organization, or through counseling or therapy. And has done their duty and reported the crime to their local police, national police, and on Anyscam.com Often Don’t

By the Society of Citizens Against Romance Scams, Inc. January 15, 2018 ©

Introduction

Why is it that not all romance scams survivors find it necessary to report scams?

After all, a romance scamScam A Scam is a confidence trick - a crime -  is an attempt to defraud a person or group after first gaining their trust through deception. Scams or confidence tricks exploit victims using their credulity, naïveté, compassion, vanity, irresponsibility, or greed and exploiting that. Researchers have defined confidence tricks as "a distinctive species of fraudulent conduct ... intending to further voluntary exchanges that are not mutually beneficial", as they "benefit con operators ('con men' - criminals) at the expense of their victims (the 'marks')". A scam is a crime even if no money was lost. is truly an emotional assault, a form of rape!

Why don’t they report them to the criminalCriminal A criminal is any person who through a decision or act engages in a crime. This can be complicated, as many people break laws unknowingly, however, in our context, it is a person who makes a decision to engage in unlawful acts or to place themselves with others who do this. A criminal always has the ability to decide not to break the law, or if they initially engage in crime to stop doing it, but instead continues. justice system in order to move forward from their experience? In fact, some feel that the criminal justice system really re-victimizes them in its process. Some survivors find that the services provided by the police are openly hostile to scam victims in many cases, and online support are the only services they feel comfortable pursuing.

This really means that most of these crimes are unknown to governments and they feel little pressure to do very much about it.

While measuring rates of the emotional violence from scams can be difficult, there is no uncertainty in the national data (compiled by SCARSSCARS SCARS - Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc. A government registered crime victims' assistance & crime prevention nonprofit organization based in Miami, Florida, U.S.A. SCARS supports the victims of scams worldwide and through its partners in more than 60 countries around the world. Incorporated in 2015, its team has 30 years of continuous experience educating and supporting scam victims. Visit www.AgainstScams.org to learn more about SCARS.) that the majority of romance scams are never reported to police and government.

It is believed that only 3 to 5% of romance scams are ever reported.

Contrast that with 15.8 to 35 percent of all sexual assaults are reported to the police (at least in the United States)(according to the U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics).

A survivorSurvivor A Scam Survivor is a victim who has been able to fully accept the reality of their situation. That they were the victim of a crime and are not to blame. They are working on their emotional recovery and reduction of any trauma either on their own, through a qualified support organization, or through counseling or therapy. And has done their duty and reported the crime to their local police, national police, and on Anyscam.com’s relationship with the scam offender has a strong effect on the likelihood of reporting. Since most romance scams are not perpetrated by a real identity, and because in most cases the scam relationship was kept secret, the scam victims tend to hide the crime once discovered.

Whereas with rape/sexual assault survivors it depends more on the relationship:

  • When a rape or sexual assault offender is an intimate partner or former intimate partner, only 25 percent of sexual assaults are reported to the police.
  • When an offender is a friend or acquaintance, only 18 to 40 percent of sexual assaults are reported.
  • When an offender is a stranger, between 46 and 66 percent of sexual assaults are reported.

With romance scam victims it tends to depend upon the emotional attachment to the scammerScammer A Scammer or Fraudster is someone that engages in deception to obtain money or achieve another objective. They are criminals that attempt to deceive a victim into sending more or performing some other activity that benefits the scammer. (fake identity), then duration of the scam, and the financial losses.

Sexual Assault Survivors cite the following reasons for not reporting a sexual assault:

  • Fear of reprisal
  • Personal matter / Did not want family to know / Did not want others to know
  • Reported to a different official
  • Not important enough to respondent
  • Belief that the police would not do anything to help
  • Belief that the police could not do anything to help
  • Did not want to get offender in trouble with law
  • Not enough proof / Fear of lack of evidence
  • Fear of the justice system
  • Did not know how
  • Feel the crime was not “serious enough”
  • Unsure about perpetrator’s intent

We see very similar reasons for not reporting romance scams:

  • Fear of reprisal / threats made by the scammer
  • Personal matter / Did not want family to know / Did not want others to know / it is private and the victim