Safety should be your utmost priority. Not just online, but in day-to-day life. Offline or online, no matter where you are or what you are doing. Safety is important for children, for adults, for mature adults, for old people, basically for everyone.
If you are a child, it’s simpler to stay off the internet, but if you are a mature adult, then you must figure out how to be safe when you chat online. We’ve prepared 7 ways to stay safe online and chat. Always be prepared when getting on another journey to date someone new or just hang out in a cozy atmosphere of a local chat room making new friends.
Don’t Disclose your Personal & Financial Information to Strangers
If anyone asks for your information (ID, your address, social security number, etc.), photos, or videos, you shouldn’t give them this info if you don’t know them. While we love thinking that all people are nice and kind, don’t have any ulterior motives, and desire to get to know you better and nothing else, it’s not always the case. Even if you’re dating online and think that the person on the other side is worthy of trusting even your feelings to – think twice. Sometimes people are kind of tricky when it comes to catching a fish if you know what does it mean.
You shouldn’t give your data to strangers as they can exploit the information to scam you, get you in trouble, or get all your money.
Check out Friend Lists
Before dating or even talking to anyone online, check out their profiles in detail. This includes their friend lists. If they have no friends or few of them or if they have many fake profiles in their friends list, if they have no photos with others or no photos, then you should stay away.
Statistically speaking, even if you carefully curated your friend list and only added family members, a few buddies from your school days, a couple of work colleagues, and a handful of real friends, you would still have a decent number of friends on social media.
Look at the Photos, See if They Are Tagged
Even if you enter mature chat rooms with older people, some of whom might not be very active on social media or dating sites, they would still have many photos and are even tagged on some. As most matures nowadays are extra cautious about everything tied with the web and online dating, this should be taken as a great informer.
Most real profiles have many photos in which they’ve tagged other people and even more photos in which they’ve been tagged (and these ones are the bad, embarrassing, and most fun ones).
Asked for a Webcam Chat, and They Refused?
If you’ve chatted for a while and desire to see them communicate better and discover what they look like, you can ask to video chat. If they do not turn on their webcam and don’t have a valid excuse, they probably are not who they say they are. Sure, that may not be so crucial when just having an entertaining chat; however, it should work as a trigger for you when it comes to more serious stuff like online dating or establishing meaningful connections.
Even if they come up with a great excuse, if they make up excuses whenever you ask, the issue remains the same.
Use Google Image Search
You mustn’t be a computer whizz to learn how to utilize Google to your advantage. You can use it for a background search if you have information about them, like full name and location, but you can also use it to spot scammers.
Click the photo of the person you suspect is a scammer, drag and drop it into Google’s image search. This action shall show you all the places online where the image was used. You may utilize the exact feature to discover if anyone is illegally using your photos. This is a fantastic skill to have if you intend to create a dating site by yourself.
What to Do if You Decide to Meet
At some point, theoretically, after chatting to someone online for a while, you will decide to meet them. If so, you can’t leave anything to chance and must take safety precautions. You can’t rely on what and who they appear to be.
Only go to public places and don’t let them pick you up from home. If possible, bring a friend or have them sitting nearby, ready to get you out of a bad situation. If there are no friends available to help, send them messages with your location, a description of your date and their car, or share your location live with someone close.
If the person you go on a date with isn’t who you were expecting, or they give you a bad vibe, don’t feel embarrassed to leave. A couple of minutes of awkwardness is better than being in a bad situation. Especially when you’re on the search for your perfect couple: dating could turn out into a horror movie if you’re not careful on the first date and have the bad luck of meeting a mean person. Mind that.
Trust Your Gut
If you’re not chatting to lose weight, but rather you’ve reached a certain age where you crave companionship, love, and understanding, then thank your gut instincts for bringing you this far.
You’re an adult and have been through a lot. You have experience and knowledge and common sense. When chatting online, follow them. Do what you do at home, in real life. Be yourself and double-check everything you can.
The internet can be a scary place if you don’t know how to take care of yourself. Apply all safety measures, even those which you think might be too much. You can never be too safe.