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How to Stay Safe When Online Dating

Stay Safe When Online Dating

In the modern world, everything is online. More often than not, people are meeting their partners through online dating websites such as Tinder, Bumble and Hinge. But, although it is a much more convenient way of talking to people, there are risks. 

It’s important to remember certain online dating tips to ensure safety. Though you may have been speaking to them every minute of the day, in reality, they’re still a stranger. Especially when you’ve never met them in the flesh. So, let’s take a look at some online dating tips that you should remember for your next swipe. 

Privatise Information

On a dating profile, typically the only information you can give is your name and any details you state in your bio. Though there are no limitations to what you put in your online dating bio, it’s important you don’t go into too much detail. Favourite colour and film? Definitely. Your phone number or place of work? Not so much.

Giving out information may lead them to your social media and in theory, more details about your life. Make sure your social media accounts are private and never authorise your location. The same goes for any financial information. You should never give your bank details out or pay money to anybody you haven’t met in person.

Video Call or Telephone Them Before Meeting

After you have been messaging someone every day, the next step is usually to meet them in person. Yet, you may be uncomfortable having a drink with someone you have never met in the flesh, seen or even heard their voice. Or, the person may be lying about certain features, such as their appearance, nationality, age or even gender.

Video calling them beforehand gives you the opportunity to make sure they are who they say they are. It can give you an idea of your compatibility and whether the conversation naturally flows. Video calls are typically offered through the safety of the dating app, so you don’t even have to give them your number.

Meet in a Public Place

For a first date, it is always a good idea to meet in a public place. Having other people around will deter any suspicious or criminal activity and improves your safety. Typically, in places such as restaurants and bars, there are notices in the female bathrooms for “Ask Angela”. So, if it isn’t going well or they look different to their pictures, you can ask for “Angela” at the bar and the staff will help you get home safely.

Also, make sure you always tell someone where you are going. Send screenshots, updates and how you are feeling about the situation so your closest friends know you are safe. And, if it is going sour, ask someone who knows your location to pick you up.

Be Wary of Romance Scams

But, some people on online dating apps and websites are not looking for love. Not even a one-night stand. No, some users are experienced fraudsters who are looking for a victim to take advantage of. If they are asking for money or keep making excuses for why they can’t meet you in person, this is a major red flag of a romance scam.

At Verity Henton, we have taken on cases that deal with all types of online dating. Although occasionally we have found that the person is who they say they are, other times it becomes more sinister. In the past, we have uncovered romance scams, where someone is masquerading as a high-profile individual, asking for money from their victim. You should always be confident in who you are speaking to. Find out more about online dating here.  

Trust Your Instincts

Sometimes, the best sign is your own judgement. If you are speaking to someone online and are getting a weird vibe, chances are you are right. If they make you feel uncomfortable or are avoiding certain questions, it’s important to trust your instincts before you get any further into the conversation.

Consider hiring a private investigator. Our male and female detectives operate all across the country, performing discreet background checks on online dating profiles. We provide a full report on them, including their real identity, relationship status, address, previous convictions and whether they are safe to be around children. 

Our Private Investigators in London and Essex

Verity Henton are a team of male and female private investigators in London and Essex. Yet, we are not just limited to the capital. We work nationally and even internationally. When it comes to online dating, it’s important to take as many precautions as possible to ensure your safety throughout. So, why not be 100% confident in the person you are speaking to? 

Our UK private detectives provide a full range of discreet investigations, including background checks on online dating profiles and looking for signs of catfishing

For more information on our investigation services, get in touch today! Just fill in our form or give us a call at 01277 564007 (Essex) or 020 3916 5917 (London) to speak to our team today.