There is something incredible about the ritual of dating. The freshness and its capability can be energizing. The expanding relationship isn't cemented so there is a desire to prove yourself worthy of your partner’s affection.
Online dating can either emphasize the excitement of romance or kill it. Getting to know someone that you have met through a dating app CAN be tricky- online daters have a reputation of being fickle and playing the field. What’s even worse, not only is your heart on the line as an online dater, but so is your wallet. Catfishers and other forms of online scammers will play you for a fool and drain your bank account if you let them.
If your heart is open for love and you want to try the online dating world, you need to be careful. While some may suggest simply allowing yourself to fall in love and to follow your instincts, not everyone has the best intentions (and there are MANY manipulative people having fun and making a living off of unsuspecting people).
If you want to fall in love the safe way where you can open your heart to someone and have no fear, it’s actually quite easy to protect yourself and (hopefully) avoid any mayhem.
It is certainly important that you remain picky when choosing who you give your time and effort to in order to avoid any dangerous or otherwise sticky situations. Don’t just go out with any clown that comes honking your way as that could get you in some serious trouble.
|Please keep in mind that the following advice isn’t meant for every person you connect with online- only the select few people that you could see yourself going on a date with and potentially falling in love with. |
How to be vulnerable and safely date online
Being vulnerable is hard in any relationship; I myself have been married for quite some time now and still find myself struggling with being completely honest and open with my partner. Relationships can be hard, ESPECIALLY when you give your heart to and care for a person. They have your heart in their hands and can either nurture it or squash it to pieces.
The same goes for any online dater who is potentially putting their heart in the hands of another. When meeting new people through a dating app, the inorganic fashion of the online dating world and level of risk involved has to cause stress and concern for anyone who is genuinely involved.
Now, with the Corona Virus sweeping the globe and people shifting their focus to online romance more than ever, the risk of being a victim of an online dating scam only continues to rise. Furthermore, because people are connecting online through various platforms on an increasing rate, people's identities are more likely to be stolen and even used to create fake dating accounts. Source: MSN
While it is easy to understand why most online daters would want to close their accounts and their hearts during these uncertain times, it is also important for many people to keep their social media and dating accounts active to protect their mental health.
So, all internet users must make a choice on how they handle protecting themselves from online predators. If you have any social media accounts, make sure to review your privacy settings so that YOU can choose who sees your photos. You can also occasionally search your name on Google and reverse image search your photos so that you can report any stolen information.
If you are online dating and want to check the authenticity of the person you are connecting with, digital trail. If you are able to locate your potential dating partner online, you will learn more about them and get a better idea if they are who they say they are OR whether or not your partner even truly exists.
For more information on how to learn more about a potential dating partner, you can read the tips below.
Getting to know your potential partner by following their digital trail
Technology has its positives and negatives. Depending on what kind of trail you have left, an online presence can either strengthen your image or weaken it. The same goes for the person you are connecting with. If they have secrets, many of those can be online. And if they don’t have an online trail, it's more likely that the person you are talking to via the internet is someone else than what is being represented on your screen.
If you are getting serious with someone that you meant online, you may want to find them online and see if they are who they say they are. The best place to start is by running a reverse image search on them. Any picture they have sent you or on their dating profile will work. If they haven’t shown you a picture of themselves and refuse to send you a picture, please run as fast as you can out of the relationship. It’s likely that they are not who they say they are. Sounds harsh but it is the truth. There are far too many people on dating apps who aren’t who they say they are.
How to perform a reverse image search
To lookup their image, simply run an image search on Google. You will need to download the picture first onto a desktop/laptop computer as you cannot perform this search on a phone.
By performing a reverse image search on someone, you might be able to find their social profiles or even if they have stolen their picture elsewhere (they could be a catfish).
This technique works well if the person you are searching for has posted their same picture elsewhere (such as a social profile or otherwise) or if they have used someone else’s picture that they found online to pass for that person.
Looking them up on social media
If you know their full name or any of their usernames, you can try to locate your potential partner on social media by looking them up using the most popular social media platforms. For example, you can look up their name via Facebook to try and locate their profile, or lookup their username via Twitter.
Looking them up on Google
If you still cannot find your online connection via Google Images or by social media search, the next step is trying to look them up on Google. You can think of anything that you may know about them, perhaps their name, a username, their relatives name, a group they might be a part of, etc.
Google holds far more information than we can fathom. If you can’t find any info on your potential lover on Google, you may have to go to a website that specializes in storing online information such as Wyty.
Performing a people search by name or reverse phone lookup
If you still are having trouble, your last step would be to perform a search by name lookup and/or a reverse phone lookup to see if you can get any clues as to where they have established themselves online.
By going this route, you can also find out things about them that you might not have found otherwise, such as their email address, related people, other names that they may have gone by, etc. These clues will help you decide if you want to continue your communication with an online connection or bail altogether.
Bonus Dating Tips
You have to also put in the effort if you want to find the perfect connection. These great bonus dating tips are from dating expert Evan Marc Katz. He recommends doing these three things when getting to know someone romantically:
- Words are powerful- take the necessary time needed to create a strong and truthful online dating profile.
- It doesn't matter if you are a male of female- always try to improve yourself.
- Don't move to fast no matter how much you like where the relationship is going.
Following our tips and the tips directly above should help you not only date successfully, but also safely.
If all else fails…
Ask the person you are talking to why you can’t find any information on them online. Perhaps they are hiding something, and the reason is actually a good one.
However, if they are unwilling to share with you about their life, it may be best to move on (especially if you haven’t even seen any pictures of them yet). It is definately best to avoid anyone who isn’t willing to share at least a little bit about themselves so that you can get to know them. Always remember that you are putting so much on the line when you are opening your heart up.