Dating Safely: How to Vet Online Love Interests

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When you’re looking for a relationship, you want to believe the cute new person you met through a dating app is the real deal. Unfortunately, the dating pool is filled with tons of catfish pretending to be people they aren’t. Before getting too emotionally invested with an online love, do your research to discover if they’re telling the truth about who they really are.

Look for Social Media Profiles

Sometimes a first name and a few details, like place of employment and alma mater, are all you need to discover someone on social media. To make it easier on yourself, get the person’s last name and conduct a full-fledged social media search. Look on popular websites like Facebook and LinkedIn to get information about the person you’re chatting with to see if it matches up with what they’ve told you. You can also search Twitter to find out how they interact with others, and Instagram to get an idea of their lifestyle.

Do a Google Search

A Google search will turn up social media profiles, and it might also turn up personal websites, awards and achievements, or mug shots. While a social media profile is a curated look into someone’s life, a Google search will reveal information that didn’t make the cut for Facebook or LinkedIn. For example, it might turn up a photo of your online suitor at his or her alma mater, confirming where the person attended college.

Reverse Search Pictures

Having trouble finding potential suitors online? Save the pictures they have displayed on their profile and use a reverse image search to look them up. If someone is a catfish and has stolen photos from someone else, Google will find the original source. If someone is using his or her real photos, the image search might link you to social media profiles you were unable to find through traditional searching.

Run a Background Check

Whether or not you’ve discovered that the person in the pictures is the person you’re talking to, you still don’t have all the information, which is why you need to run a background check. Married people who have been carrying on affairs for years, for example, are adept at hiding the fact that they’re married. Sex offenders and criminals will disguise the fact that they’ve been in trouble with the law.

Choosing the right website for a background check will give you any nasty details about people that they haven’t divulged. Discover big information like whether someone is divorced or small details like people who have lied about their age. Plus, if someone has created a fake online presence using a false name, the background check will help you discover that deception, too.

Save yourself time and emotional turmoil by doing your research first. If you discover any fishy information, cut off contact with this person and look elsewhere for true love. No good relationship will begin with lies, and protecting yourself should be your first priority. By researching your online love interests, you ensure they’re safe to meet in person, too.

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