As Press Officer for our trade body, The Association of British Introduction Agencies I regularly speak with the media and appear on TV and radio to discuss anything to do with the dating industry. This week was no exception, particularly yesterday which was extremely hectic – why? Because another lonely lady had been conned by a man she had met on an online dating site; this time for her life savings of £74,000. He apparently gave all sorts of reasons why he needed the money, starting a new business, preventing his son from losing his home were just two of them. Why is it sensible, intelligent people are taken in by strangers in cyberspace – when after all they wouldn’t lend money to a stranger they met in a pub a few times would they? The answer is these con artists prey on the vulnerable and lonely, often ladies of a certain age who perhaps have lost their husbands. They offer love, companionship and a dream. However, the reality is much more sinister. I am certainly not anti internet dating but I say all the time BEWARE if someone sounds too good to be true and asks for money say NO! The majority of cases like this I have been asked to comment on the victim has said they had a feeling something wasn’t right but parted with money anyway hoping “the dream” might come true. My advice is use your “gut feeling” if something doesn’t add up it’s probably not true and NEVER EVER hand over money.