“Social networking sites and apps are increasingly popular with the public, a growth that also draws the attention of malicious people and criminals.”
Previously, social networking sites did not bring a feeling of comfort to the user that the person they were talking to was, in fact, "that person". And now, not only Tinder but the many others that exist do not arouse this fear so much.
Does that mean then it's safe and there should be no worries? Not! The application may have all the mechanisms to convey security to you but understand: behind it, there's a person, and you shouldn't discard the hypothesis that whoever is behind that profile might indeed be someone with malicious intent.
So, nothing better than taking some basic precautions so that you don't fall into the hands of a criminal.
How to Date Online Safely?
Online dating is usually fun but many times people don’t realize the risks involved in this intriguing activity. When do beautiful faces turn into malicious actors is never known and can potentially cause harm if individuals avoid using precautions at their own level.
Here we list down some useful safety tips that can help you protect yourself against some deceitful activities while interacting with strangers via an online dating platform.
Research and Review Safety Measures
On coming across an online dating application, do thorough research on the app’s security and go for checking out its reviews at first.
Online dating can be a risky endeavor as via such platforms you come across thousands of unknowns. So make sure that the app you select is worthy enough to give its users countable security features for protecting their privacy and sensitive data from being misused or leaked. Prefer reading the safety guidelines of the selected app.
Check Out Blocking and Abuse Reporting Features
Engaging with strangers makes one thing sure that along the journey of meeting appropriate and entertaining and genuine people, you may come across some weirdos, insane personalities that can annoy you while you get in touch with them.
So such circumstances will urge you to look for ways of blocking them to restrict contact or report behavior of such profiles. Thus, at the forefront, one must be acquainted with the crucial safety features of a dating application. If you do not find such mandatory features, then switch on to the next app.
Determine the Level of Visibility the App Provides
Before making a decision over a dating platform, make sure it offers complete control over the visibility of your profile and offers viable options in regard to this feature.
The less the features offered, the more is the vulnerability of data to get exposed. These days, usually, almost every dating app is concerned about users’ safety and privacy, and looking at cybercrimes, they have enabled several options within the app, allowing users full control of who they see and who sees them.
Examine the Sign-Up Authentication Steps
In general, tricky apps would simply get you registered via consuming your email, username, and password credentials, and won’t ask for any extra information to keep it for security purposes.
Nevertheless, purposeful and authentic dating apps have predefined criteria set to configure your registration via a series of steps to complete the entire sign-up process, concerning security reasons.
Moreover, they apply the two-factor authentication concept to verify and validate your input data and check for the same usernames and identities to avoid duplicity and ensure the unique identification of users.
[NB: It’s a recommendation to use unique and complex passwords for dating applications and prefer to store them using a password manager.]
Pay Close Heed to Geography Settings
Many online dating apps have the provision of using your geolocation (to find possible matches) at the time of app usage without taking prior permission from the user to set it on.
Thus, as an active app operator, one must be careful of inspecting this particular feature and set it accordingly. An ideal app provides control over this setting too if your app lacks in providing full transparency over the same, it may set you up for problems in the near time. So make an app pick wisely.
Never Share Personal Information
Apart from the details provided in your app profile, never think of sharing information about your health, financial status, workplace, and residence, and better avoid sharing details of your private social media accounts.
Remember, you aren’t obligated to share your personal details like gender, body, job, medical records, etc. while you interact and flow in the river emotions. Do what makes you feel comfortable and safe as a scheming person take advantage of your emotions and trouble you later.
[NB: Dating apps and websites never send emails or messages asking for your account details and passwords, so on receiving such messages, consider them reporting.]
Run Verification Checks over Ambivalent Profiles
Certainly, instincts can predict more than what we sometimes feel is hard to believe. If you find something fishy about a person who is in connection with you prefer inspecting his/her social media profiles to verify and validate the data provider by that personality before you decide to meet.
Get answers to questions that have raised doubts in your mind like:
- Does the information shared on the dating app is identical to their public profiles?
- Is the information provided in conversations match with their social media accounts data?
Ignore Requests who Urge you for Financial Help
There are many fraud individuals who register on dating applications with an intention to impel money from their link-ups or send requests regarding the same.
No matter how compelling or convincing the reason may be, commit in your mind that such requests are a form of invisible baits to bluff you who ask to send money over by transfers or other methods. In such a case, report to the app administration immediately and gain knowledge over online dating scams.
Today, with the support of technology, people usually think that nothing bad can ever happen to them. Every day people risk their lives to feel this adrenaline of leaving the virtual for the real, and forget basic safety points that parents have warned since childhood.
This innovation brought by the internet and which facilitates the relationship between Internet users is in fact incredible and has many records of users who even got married, however, you can't leave behind that you can't be too careful.
We are not only facing criminals with sexual purposes but also scammers who seek to extract sensitive data from users through extremely personal questions, in order to obtain some financial advantage.
In the end, know that all relationship applications have a space for complaints, from fake profiles to spam. By following these basic recommendations, there's no problem finding someone you've met online.