Transcript for Better Business Bureau warns of social media and online dating scams
Our "Gma" cover story. A warning about romance scams. Criminals Aring itting people looking for love online gaining access to their personal and financial information. Gio is back with an exclusive look. R better business bureau is seeing a huge jump in romance scams costing consumers nearly $1 billion over the past three years. Now there is a new way they'ring sitting their victims. Take a look. It's no secret that as some use social media and dating apps to find love scammers have used it to find victims but now according to a brand-new report from the better business bureau, the new way criminals are scamming victims is by making them unoing money mules. Here's what experts say happens. They find a victim who may not have a lot of money or has already given it all away, then they get them to unwittingly launder money, receive and distribute counterfeit checks and stolen goods even open bank accounts for stolen cash. Money mules become the middleman between the crime and the criminal. Making it that much harder for law enforcement to catch those scammers. They're making people accessories to these things. Law enforcement is not interested in prosecuting people that are unwitting victims but they really need money mules to come forward. I said you're scamming me and he goes, how can I be scamming you? I'm not asking you for any money? I started thinking, well, that's true. Reporter: This divorced woman doesn't want to show her face. But says she unintentionally helped launder nearly $10,000 for a man she met on an online dating site. He is telling me that I was his soul mate and that I was the only person he had and he would ask me to pick up the money and I would either send him an Amazon card or a money gram so I did this about once every three, four weeks, about eight, ten months. Reporter: She said as time passed without meeting she became suspicious and reached out to investigators at the better business bureau. He was just pushing all the right buttons, you know, things that I wanted to hear. These are professionals. People forget the con man is short for confidence man. What they're expert on is getting people confidence. Reporter: We are told that last year alone 30% of romance scam victims were unknowingly used to launder money and there are probably more victims than we know of because investigators say people are ashamed to talk about this. Don't be ashamed. Talk about it. Don't be ashamed but what else can you do? You want to go ahead and do your research. Go ahead and do internet search, make sure you're talking to friends and family about it because you don't want to rush into these online relationships. Absolutely great advice. We have another cautionary
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