A North Vancouver woman has recovered some of the thousands of dollars she lost in an online-dating scam.

The woman had developed a long-distance relationship with a man through the dating website Match.com when he asked her to send him $27,000. The funds were supposedly for legal fees related to a construction contract. The man claimed to be living outside Canada and promised to pay the woman back when he returned to the country. Instead, police said the man “took the money and ran.”

Through police investigation, the woman was able to recover more than $11,000.

“Because the incident was immediately reported to police and the money was not transferred outside of Canada, some of the money transactions were reversed,” said North Vancouver RCMP Cst. Brett Cunningham, adding “Unfortunately, recovering money from internet scams doesn’t happen often.”

The investigation is ongoing.

Police said online predators use dating sites to construct elaborate false life stories to gain the trust of their victims. Then the scammer will ask for a loan.

Police advise people who are victims of online scams to advise your financial institution right away and report the incident to police. They also offered a list of precautions for online daters, including:

• Never share personal information.

• Never share credit card or banking information.

• Do not share your address if someone offers to send gifts.

• If you decide to meet your online date in person, ensure your first meeting is in a public place.

• Tell a trusted friend or family member the details of your date, including who you are meeting, where and when.

“You need to ask yourself the important questions,” warned Cunningham. “Why am I not allowed to meet them in person? Why do they refuse to talk via webcam? And more importantly, Is this too good to be true?”