LONDON, ONT -- A Norfolk County senior resident is out $200,000 after falling victim to an online romance scam.

Police were alerted to the scam by an employee at the victim’s bank after the transfers were discovered.

The victim had established an online relationship after meeting someone on a dating website.

During the course of a year and half several requests for money were made after claiming several emergencies.

"It's not always easy to spot scams, and new ones are invented every day,” says Const. Ed Sanchuk with the OPP.

Provincial Police have the following tips when it comes to avoiding a romance scam:

  • Check website addresses carefully. Scammers often set up fake websites with very similar addresses to legitimate dating websites. Make sure you only use legitimate and reputable dating websites.
  • Never send money, or give credit card or online account details to anyone you do not know and trust. A request to send money to a foreign country (using Western Union or MoneyGram) to this person you have never personally met should be a red flag.
  • Don't give out any personal information in an email or when you are chatting online. Like any scam, use your computer to your advantage. Educate yourself. Check the person's name, the company name the addresses used, and ask yourself, "Would this be normal?"
  • Ask yourself - "Would someone I have never met really declare their love for me after only a few letters or emails?"