Many people who use online dating sites arn’t always truthful about everything they say, and you may not find this out until it is much too late to do anything about it. Therefore, if you plan to date using a website to initiate the relationship, there are a few things you can do to keep yourself safe.
- Do not give out too much personal information in the initial meet.
A lot of people will be able to take advantage of any information you give out such as your name or phone number. Worst case scenario, you could be a victim of identity theft. You should simply give out your first name initially, and perhaps a disposable number. You can get a free number for people to call from Google Voice, or simply purchase a prepaid phone.
- Meet in a public place.
If you plan on meeting the person, avoid areas that are private (such as your or the other person’s home) or off the beaten path (like secluded parks). Instead, consider public places with a lot of people such as a mall or restaurant, or a moderately-trafficed park. This discourages the probability that something bad will happen. Also, you may wish to have a friend or two nearby in case you need to pull out of the date.
- Do a background check on the person.
Once you have the person’s full name and birth date, you can do a background check on them. The background check can reveal any potentially dangerous details such as felony or misdemeanor convictions, any restraining orders or injunctions they may have, and most importantly, whether they are a sex offender or not. If they are, it’s usually a big sign to back away, especially if they haven’t been honest with you.
- Use common sense.
Is the person aggressive around people? Do they threaten people, even in just? Have they made comments that just seem a little “off”? Just remember this: If something looks disturbing or dangerous, it probably is.
If despite all safety precautions the date attempts to hurt you, Do not attempt to confront the attacker if you can help it. Get as far away from the person as you possibly can. Do not go home. Go to a friend’s house or public area and contact the police as soon as possible. If you suspect that the person is following you, go directly to the nearest police station or dial 911 from your cell phone.
Remember that everyone fibs a little bit on dating sites. However, there’s a big difference between a photo that’s older than it should be, and someone lying about their past.
This guest post is from Allison with BackgroundCheck.org, where you can go to get free background checks and learn more safety tips.