Users who are misled on dating sites with fake profiles get their money back. The compensation stems from an agreement between the Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) with The Right Link, the company behind these websites. The company has set aside 9 million euros for the compensation.
The dating sites, such as matchprofielen.nl and flirten.nl, made use of fake profiles and chat operators who acted as the person on the profile and the users led to lengthy conversations. Users were not aware that it was about fake profiles.
Company employees were instructed to keep users talking for as long as possible. Because the user pays per message, they sometimes lost up to thousands of euros in conversations without ever meeting.
Because the dating sites did not make it clear that it was about fake profiles, this is a matter of deception. Around 37,000 victims therefore receive financial compensation.
The company behind the websites has also promised to inform users more clearly in the future. "That is important for consumer confidence in the online world," said Cateautje Hijmans van den Bergh, board member of ACM.
The deception came to light after reports to ConsuWijzer and reports from the NOS . In the period from July 2016 to April 2018, the ACM investigated seventeen websites of the company and, among other things, raided the companies behind these sites.
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