Recent study shows that Florida is No. 2 most catfished state in 2022. Everyone should be careful ahead of Valentine’s Day

WEST PALM BEACH, Florida — According to a new study by SocialCatfish.com, Florida will be the second most catfished state in 2022. This led a West Palm Beach woman who was catfished and her boyfriend to talk about their experience.

Alessandro Cinquini, who lives in Miami, told WPTV, “I can’t have Facebook because I’ve been banned like 25 times.”

That’s because Cinquini told WPTV that online fakes have been using his photos and profiles for years to try to trick women into thinking they are him.

Nicole Hayden from West Palm Beach is one of them.

Hayden said, “I was just on Instagram and got a direct message (DM) from a profile.” “After four or five days, I came to the conclusion that it was probably a catfisher.”

So, Hayden looked up Alessandro’s real name.

“I replied to one of his stories, and I don’t know, maybe three hours later, he replied back. After that, Hayden said, “the rest is history.”

After more than a year, Hayden is now dating Cinquini, and they work together to raise awareness about catfishing.

“If you think about how many online scams there are in any area, from love to money to cryptocurrency, it can be hard to tell what’s real and what’s not,” Cinquini said.

A new study by SocialCatfish.com says that Florida is the second-most catfished state, with 1,738 victims losing an average of $40,554 each in 2022.

“They are using many people to get money, so they say things like, “Hey, my cousin Joe is going to send you $5,000. If you can turn that money into cryptocurrency,'” The person who started SocialCatfish.com, David McClellan, said.

McClellan said that when someone asks you for money, that is the number one sign that you are being scammed.

“McClellan said the other thing is if someone won’t video chat. “…Anyone who falls in love with you right away and starts telling you all these wonderful things.”

The FBI recommends doing a reverse image search on the person’s picture and profile before talking to them online. You can do this on sites like SocialCatfish.com.

The FBI also says to ask a lot of questions, and if someone says they’ll meet you in person but always has an excuse, that’s a big red flag.

Cinquini has one more tip for single people who want to find love.

He told her, “Don’t hide behind the phone.” “Of course, watch out for scams and people pretending to be you, but if you want to do something, like talk to a girl, go up to her and do it the old-fashioned way, and I think it will work.”

Lowell Bowen

From the time he was 8 years old Lowell knew he wanted to be on TV. Well, as people say one thing leads to another, that's how Lowell started his career in the news industry. Lowell has been part of The South Florida Daily since the very beginning.

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