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Beware online dating scams

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STERLING – Sterling Federal Bank staff are warning residents of the risks of online dating scams.

In a news release, Cindy Friesen with SFB wrote that social media networks and dating websites have become increasingly popular tools for meeting and communicating.

“According to the FBI, over $220 million was lost in 2016 to online romance scam artists. Older Americans in particular have been targeted by this type of scam,” Friesen wrote.

Tips to reduce scam risks include:

• Slow down and talk to a trusted person. Don’t be rushed by a scammer.

• Never wire money, put money on a gift or cash reload card, or send cash to an online love interest.

• People who do think they sent money to a scammer should contact their bank right away, as well as the online dating site, the Federal Trade Commission, and the FBI.

Go to aba.com/Tools/Infographics/Pages/Infographic-Online-Dating-Scams.aspx for more information.