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Australians looking for love online have been warned to be wary of “too good to be true” matches as concerns grow about how foreign spies are using the internet to get information.

Liberal Senator James Paterson expressed concerns today after it was revealed foreign intelligence agencies were using dating apps to access sensitive information.

“We need to remember that if it seems too good to be true then it probably is,” the Victorian Senator told ABC News, echoing a warning from Australia’s top spy agency.

Dating app
Australians looking for love online have been warned about being scammed for their information. (Unsplash)

“If you’re a six and they’re a 10, it might not be your looks that they’ve been charmed by, it might be your access to classified information,” Mr Paterson said.

Australian Security Intelligence Organisation (ASIO) boss Mike Burgess revealed in his annual threat assessment speech spies were using the internet to target information, with COVID-19 sending online radicalisation into overdrive.

“Isolated individuals spent more time online, exposed to extremist messaging, misinformation and conspiracy theories,” Mr Burgess said.

“It’s like being in an echo chamber where the echo gets louder and louder, generating cycles of exposure and reinforcement.

ASIO Director-General of Security Mike Burgess says Australia is facing internal and external threats. (AAP)

“ASIO is also tracking suspicious approaches on dating platforms such as Tinder, Bumble and Hinge.

“My message for any potential victims on these sites is a familiar one — if it seems too good to be true, it probably is.

“While espionage is one of the most insidious security threats we are dealing with online, it is not the most concerning trend.”

Home Affairs Minister Karen Andrews also spoke on the Director-General’s annual update during Question Time on Thursday, saying the pandemic has created “a number of security challenges”.

“There is credible intelligence that there are people out there who have the intent and the capability to do us harm,” she said.

Source: 9News

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