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At the end of the day they all have the same basic plot – there is an emergency and won’t you please send them some money?

Nancy – not her real name – is 47, and a single mother from North Yorkshire, who runs her own business.

In 2015, after her marriage broke down, she signed up to dating site

He also said his son was in hospital and needed surgery.

Nancy said she was uncomfortable with the situation but ended up “reluctantly” sending 3,650 euros (£3,160).

The number of people defrauded in the UK by online dating scams reached a record high in 2016, the Victoria Derbyshire programme has learned.

According to the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau, there were 3,889 victims of so-called romance fraud last year, who handed over a record £39m.“That’s really frightening, and the other aspect is that somebody’s got inside your head, and they’ve just brutalised you emotionally.In some ways I’m not sure I’ll ever recover from that.” says it provides regular advice on how to stay safe and suggests members keep conversations on the site “so that our customer care team can identify abnormal activity”.This is a common ploy used by Russian and Filipino scammers to rob you off your money.The general storyline is she will want to come visit you but does not have enough money and will ask you to send her money to help pay for the plane ticket and/or visa.Armed with their fake identity, the scammer proceeds to forge a bond with you.

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