Despite many success stories, the Internet is littered with casualties of online dating. Unsuspecting single women may be targeted via bogus profiles on social networking sites, and many have fallen victim to dating scams. Fake profiles aren’t always easy to spot, but the following tips may help: Are you an Asian single? Follow this Asian singles solution to avoid a fake profile.
Check out the photo – does it have a white/plain background? Is he extremely good looking? Do you feel like you’ve seen him somewhere before? Fake profiles often display professional pictures of actors or models, and some photos are even stolen from other online media and model sites. If the photo looks too good to be true, then it probably is. If you’re worried, ask him to take a picture of himself holding a paper with the words ConnectingSingles and the date or your username written on it. Don’t give your email address to anyone who is not willing to do what it takes to show you they’re real, or who gets angry at your caution.
Refusal to use Skype
Skype is a great way to weed out; the fakes. This software application is free to download and use when exchanging calls with other Skype users. It also allows users to make video calls, enabling you to verify his appearance. If he’s serious about using online dating as a means to meet a potential partner, he will almost certainly have a webcam. A refusal to use Skype should make you wary.
While it’s unrealistic to expect him to remember everything that you tell him, be suspicious of continual memory lapses. You’ve told him about your family – he forgets you have a sister; you’ve waxed lyrical about your cat – he asks about your dog; you mention an incident that happened at work, but he doesn’t remember what it is that you do. Singularly, these lapses of memory may be just that – but collectively, it’s possible that he’s confusing you with other women that he’s ‘dating’ on the Internet. Many scammers will call you ‘dear’, ‘pretty’ or ‘sweetie’ so they don’t have to worry about remembering your name.
Although you may be flattered that he’s more interested in talking about you than himself, don’t let this continue indefinitely. As the relationship progresses, press for more details about his background, hobbies, career, family, etc. If he’s vague with his answers or reticent to disclose information, he may be hiding something. Are you frustrated because you can never get a straight answer? Scammers are good at avoiding answers to your questions. They reply with questions about you, change the subject and talk about how much they care about you, or ask again for your email address because ‘it’s so much easier to talk over there’.
If you’re asked to follow a link on his dating profile, then cease contact immediately. Unscrupulous companies will often set up fake profiles and send out cut and paste mailings in order to draw traffic to their website; they will then try to coerce you into buying a product or joining a service. Additionally, duplicitous individuals may use malicious spyware in order to obtain personal and financial information.
International dating scams
Be particularly cautious of men who proclaim love at first email or international profiles that contain obvious grammatical errors. Women are often tricked into providing monetary assistance for ‘ailing’ relatives or wiring money for airfare. NEVER send money to a man you meet online – regardless of his alleged circumstances. A genuine admirer will not expect this from you. Equally, some men may be seeking citizenship, so be suspicious of premature marriage proposals.
Be also cautious of those contacting you far out of your area or age range. People who are seriously looking for longterm usually want to date someone near their age or location. It’s best to search for someone who lives close enough to meet often and get to know each other slowly. (There are filters on your CS Edit page you can set to limit contacts by age, location, and other criteria)
Although there are downsides, Internet dating can be great fun and very rewarding. By using a little common sense, trusting your instincts and taking a few steps to verify the authenticity of your online beau, you will considerably reduce your chances of being duped.
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