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The Chinese government has doubled down on dating fraud in recent years.
Last August, around 60 members of an organised scam ring in Suqian, near the eastern coast, were sentenced to up to 11 years for committing fraud totaling more than 1 million yuan, or around €130,000.
” "Sir, how did you discover this young man's cross-dressing skills? I want to get it for my wife."The repercussions of these types of online dating scams, however, can be serious.
Many victims are swindled out of thousands of dollars when they are persuaded by the fake “girlfriend” to send money or invest in dubious products.
While the measures are ostensibly aimed at regulating online dating services, the tightening control over the use of fake identities suggests that authorities are also seeking to use the incidents to ramp up censorship and surveillance.
When the government announces something like this, you have to ask who is the real target.
The government also announced a plan to increase regulation of the dating industry and steer its citizens towards state-run matchmaking platforms, such as Communist Youth League dating groups.
Alain Wang, a Paris-based expert on digital growth in China, says that these types of tactics are another way for the government to control users’ online activity.
They often work this way, using a society-level incident to go a little bit further in surveillance. Weibo became too viral, so they cracked down and sent people on to We Chat, which is more of a closed chatroom, or like an improved Whatsapp.
Another said: “I hope he can do a make-up tutorial next.” Online romance scams have become a big problem in mainland China and Hong Kong, and the video is part of efforts to warn internet users to be wary when they meet people on the web.
Police have seen a growing number of scammers posing as The report said it was easy to buy sets of more than 30,000 photos as well as short videos – all stolen from popular social media platforms – for as little as 1.1 yuan (16 US cents).
And in September, a 66-year-old businesswoman became Hong Kong's biggest victim of such a scam after she was duped out of HK0 million over four years by an "engineer from Britain".
Her case came to light after she spoke to her family about it, realised it was a swindle and contacted police.