SCARS™ Subject Focus: The Psychology Of Romance Scams
Romance Scams Are Infinitely Complex And Leave Victims With Significant Trauma
Attention is like a spotlight, which means when it’s pointing in one direction it pretty much ignores everything else. This is how a Romance Scam starts!
Except people don’t realize how little information coming in from the outside world we actually process. Naturally, you don’t notice what you don’t notice, plus the mind is designed to fill in the gaps for us. But fraudsters do know and almost every con uses some kind of distraction – a kind of social engineering to get you to do what the scammer wants you to do.
Scammers know all about social compliance and happily exploit our automatic deference to authority figures such as soldiers. People will hand over credit cards to people they think are waiters, car keys to people they think are car park attendants and give access to their house to people they think are from the water board. The best known online example is a ‘phishing attack’ where people give fraudsters their bank details in response to an email that purports to be from their bank.
These are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to social engineering scams. To truly learn how victims are manipulated and all of the mechanisms involved, we invite you to read our SCARS Library (below) on the subject of the Psychology of Romance Scams!