Experts say people are getting better at spotting many of the Internet's longtime scams: They're suspicious of unsolicited emails from the Nigerian royal family, and they ignore the romantic entreaties of beautiful lovestruck women who sound vaguely like badly programmed algorithms. And on dating sites, would-be scammers have a trump card: People are irrational when they're looking for love.

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There was no reason for Adam Hilarie to believe anything but the obvious: He had just been on a promising first date with a pretty girl.

Hilarie had met Hailey Rose Bustos on Plenty Of Fish, which bills itself as the largest dating site in the world.

When you're dealing with the Internet, you don't need the resources that you might need in an interpersonal relationship, or face-to-face.

But on the Internet all you need really is to be very skillful at presenting yourself as something that you aren't.

That same month, a 36-year-old man was robbed in Ohio after getting together with a woman he met on Plenty Of Fish, according to

As the victim escorted the woman known as "Nikki" to his car, a man with a gun appeared and the pair robbed the victim of 0, then ran away.

In November, the Boston Police Department warned daters to be wary of people they met online after robbers targeted victims who thought they were meeting a romantic interest at a specific address. "Members of the public are urged to take precautions when using social media or dating websites because it's possible you could come across a 'Catfisher.'" Criminals searching for real-world victims online haven't just focused on dating sites.

"When the person arrives outside that location, they are approached by a male suspect armed with a handgun and robbed of their property," Boston police said. Robberies and other violent Craigslist-related crimes across the United States - including multiple slayings - have sparked wariness among some Internet bargain hunters, too, giving police department parking lots a second life as a place to buy stuff from strangers.

A witness told investigators that Bustos had been involved in at least one similar robbery before, Ray told The Post.