Dating is fun and exciting but like everything else in life you need to make sure you remain safe. That’s why we’ve put together some pointers to help you get the most out of your online dating experience.
Limit personal information
Don’t give away too much in your personal profile; while you should use your real name, preferably don’t use your full name. By all means make your profile personable but no particulars such as work place, home address, places you frequent, sports memberships etc. Even something as simple as ‘I love to run through X park each evening before dinner’ – think about who can see your profile and what they can deduce from it.
When you do start to exchange message with other people, again be careful about how much information you give out. Remember whilst most people are genuine on dating sites, you don’t know – and can’t see – this person, so until you know who they are, then keep personal specifics to a minimum. Be especially wary if someone starts pushing you for information or asking details about your financial situation – lets face it any genuine, balance individual would not do something like this to someone else. It’s creepy to say the least.
Never give money to anyone. Repeat: NEVER. If anyone you’re communicating with through an online dating site asks for money (or bank details) they will be a scammer. No genuine person who is looking for a date would do this. Think twice too if they’d ‘love to come to visit you but they desperately can’t afford it’; again, walk away as all this will do is leave you light of love – and of wallet. Always be vigilant as these types of people will constantly be on the lookout for new ways to manipulate others.
If you have experienced fraud on a dating site (or any other site for that matter), please report it immediately to Action Fraud. Their contact details can be found here. Also let the Global Personals Online Dating Protector team know as well. Either call: 0800 987 5555 or speak with one of the team through the online chat.
Unwarranted behaviour. If you find yourself subjected to aggressive or rude behaviour – or that someone is behaving in a suspicious manner – then refrain from engaging directly with the individuals. Please let the customer care team know using the contact details given above.
Don’t give out your number or email address. Take time to get to know someone a little better online before you share your contact details. Use the tools within the online dating platform for a while until you feel comfortable. Never feel forced into giving your personal information. If someone asks for your telephone number the first time you’re in contact, don’t give it to them. The same applies if they want your address – and that means work or home. Think about it, if someone wants to send you flowers when you’ve only communicated via message, then that’s a little desperate in most people’s books. Steer clear.
Meet in a public place. When you’re meeting someone for the first few times, make sure it’s someone like a bar, coffee shop or other public place. Never give them your address and don’t agree to meet them at their home. No one of any merit would ever ask this of you in any case.
Arrange your own transport. Either get a train, bus, tube or taxi. Or maybe you can arrange for a friend or family member to drop you off and pick you up. Just don’t allow your date to pick you up or take you home.
Inform a family member or friend. Let someone you trust know that you’re going on a date. Tell them where and who you are going with, and when you’re planning on coming back. Say that you’ll ring or text them when you’re home.
Keep connected. Make sure you’re mobile phone is fully charged, and that you have your important contact numbers at hand. Don’t forget to add a few different trusted taxi firms. There are also different emergency apps that you can download today which are worth looking into.
Serious incidents. If you find yourself subjected to a serious incident, call the police immediately. Once you’re safe, please also call us on 0800 987 5555 to report it.
Remember that the customer care team including those at Global Personals Online Dating Protector work hard to protect members so that everyone can enjoy their online dating experience. However, the team can’t do it without you so please do be alert when dating – whether online or offline.