Online dating is on the rise now. Almost everyone has a profile on a dating app or a dating site. There are youngsters and even people in their 50’s who are looking for love online. However, because a lot of information that is online may not be the full truth, one needs to be careful while using online dating. Although there are advantages to dating online – you can find a larger pool of potential matches, have a longer courtship period when you just talk and can build a much more meaningful relationship when you meet. But you need to be very careful and be safe while using virtual dating platforms. Here are the ways you can be safe.
Take your time in connecting with new people
It may happen that when you are excited about meeting new people, the strong feelings may confuse you. Hence, you must take time with new people. You don’t have to talk about your life story on first online contact. There will be plenty of occasions in future for that. Oversharing can have negative impacts and it isn’t the best idea. There has been news of people oversharing their financial information and then being scammed out of their money. Don’t believe people easily when they ask you for money and be cautious.
Keeping information private
Any dates that you have met online will search for you online through search engines. They may find you on LinkedIn or Facebook and get to know much more than what you have shared on the dating site. They may find your workplace or the places that you hang out in. the best practice is to not post any identifying information on your dating profile like address, personal email or phone numbers. Keep security tight and don’t use apps that tell your location. This is one of the best ways to be safe while using virtual dating platforms.
Keep track of suspicious behaviour
Always be cautious and watch out for suspicious behaviour. Don’t do the mistake of not reporting unacceptable behaviour by anyone. Any threatening, offensive and insulting messages should be reported. You must be able to trust your instincts and stop communicating with whoever is making you uncomfortable.
Use virtual phone numbers
A virtual phone number can route a call to their primary numbers. This is good for international dating cases when you are either studying abroad or plan a vacation. This is like a layer of protection and acts like a safety net stopping strangers from directly reaching you. There can be interesting stories if you have had your share of online dates. You don’t want stalkers or people who constantly call you at odd hours.
Using a trustworthy site
Always use a site or app that is trustworthy. There could be many dating sites and because online fraud is on the rise, you must be careful. Many don’t protect your private information or your location. Some of the free dating site also allows people to chat, interact and get to know each other. But you need to be wary about sharing personal information too early to strangers. Also, try to read reviews of the dating sites online before you use them.
Fact check and verify
Always fact check people you have met online. Don’t be afraid to google them and see what the search throws up. You can also search by image to see if the person you are talking to is real on just some fake picture of a model is used. Even after a successful and positive profile search, always verify your information in whichever way you deem correct.
Identity fraud, blackmail, extortion, harassment, stalking, financial loss and emotional damage are some dangers of online dating. There could be warning signs that you can watch out for if you are unsure. For example, if they delay or refuse communication for long, always claim to be abroad, claim to urgently need money or don’t give much personal information, then you may want to think twice.