Online Dating Tips for Beginners

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Believe it or not, more than half of the global adult population is looking for a soulmate and the online dating world has been a real game-changer, enabling people from all walks of life to connect. If you are searching for the love of your life and you are new to online dating, here are a few tips to help you navigate your way to happiness and joy.

  • Watch out for fake accounts – A fake account typically has very few (if any) posts, while images are also missing. Automated bots create fake accounts and they only do as little as is necessary to achieve their goal. It pays to be sceptical of everything you see on the Internet; scammers are always on the lookout for new and innovative ways to carry out fraud.
  • Research potential matches – The Internet hosts a wealth of information and you can start by checking a potential match’s Facebook page, which will give you a heads-up on their personality. In the event their page is almost empty, it could be a fake account, which means the match is actually a bot. If you have a name and location, you can use Google’s advanced search feature to see what you can find about the person.
  • Use new images in your profile – Don’t copy images from your social media accounts into your online dating profile, as they would show up on a Google Image search and the person can find out more about you than you would wish them to know. Using new images ensures that you are not leaving a digital trail to your online presence.
  • Report suspicious users – The only way to weed out scammers and time-wasters is to report them when you have contact. It only takes a few seconds and it could save someone else from fraudulent activity; we should all be vigilant about reporting suspicious online activity, as this is an effective form of social media policing. Bringing out a sex toy at the start of a relationship would be a red flag, and yes, it does happen.
  • Always video call before a face-to-face meeting – If you are ready for a face-to-face encounter, share a video call first, then you know what to expect and will recognise the person. 

There are quite a few suspicious behaviours to watch out for when communicating with users online.

  • Asking for financial help in a very short time. 
  • Claiming to be a US citizen who is living abroad.
  • Gives vague answers to specific questions.
  • Overly romantic from the outset.
  • Pressures you to use alternative online communication platforms.
  • Claims to have a high level of education, yet grammar is below standard.

These are generalisations that should make your awareness go to the next level; study responses and try to find out about this person using a range of online tools.

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Never assume anything and always be on your guard when communicating with users of an online dating platform; think carefully before taking the relationship to the next level and always remember that scammers try to appear to be decent folk.

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