Online Adoption Scam Reveals How Couples Are Tricked By Fake Pregnancy

A discovered online adoption scam reveals how desperate couples are being tricked by fake accounts. Many couples who want to start a family are put on long waiting lists, and some can’t wait any more. The frustration and impatience make them turn to social media to look for possible children to adopt, and scammers are keenly aware of this.

In the United States, most states allow “private adoption.” This process is how couples can legally adopt without going through an agency. They can contact the birth mother directly and come up with an agreement regarding the child. The arrangement is formalized by an attorney or an adoption agency, and the baby is legally adopted. This makes reaching out for adoptions on social media common in the country, especially if the waiting lists at agencies are really long. It’s more convenient, but it can also be very dangerous.

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A fake baby Instagram adoption scam was revealed on BBC, and people have become aware of some of the methods of scammers. The trickster usually takes photos from a public account of a young expecting couple. After posting a few photos that make the account look legitimate, scammers go through hashtags and tags that reveal which users are reaching out to look for a child to adopt. They will begin to send direct messages to these accounts, complete with a background story of the pregnancy, childhood trauma, and reasons for giving up the baby. They play on these couples’ emotional state to manipulate them into believing there’s a baby to adopt.

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This particular scam did not solicit any money from the prospective parents. Online users began to speculate what the true reasons for cruelly playing with vulnerable couples truly are. Some believe the scammers are a group of anti-adoption activists, and they want to keep couples running in circles until they give up. Others think that it could be someone bitter that they can’t have their own children, so they take it out on vulnerable couples.

The worst theory is that it is targeted specifically at the expecting mother whose identity has been stolen. Someone who has a vendetta against her has just made strangers believe they’re entitled to her child, and she doesn’t know about it. It’s a scary thought: there are strangers out there who believe your child is about to be theirs.

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