Over 50s Dating Safety
Trying to find a potential partner online can be daunting especially when you take into account that your safety. However by following the steps below and using your common sense you will be able to avoid the potential snares that might occur on your quest for love.
1, Online dating sites give you profile names and internal communication for a reason; never give out your normal details straight away. Use the instant messaging or internal email system to get a feel for a person before giving them your number or personal email address.
If they push you for your name, a number or other personal contact details, simply state that you don't feel comfortable doing that and they shouldn't be asking as it is against site rules.
2, If someone catches your eye but they haven't got a recent photo posted feel free to ask them for one; this will help you build up a picture of them. Most people do have photos or are willing to send one so be wary if for some reason it is 'impossible' for them to do so.
3, Never feel rushed into meeting someone if you aren't a 100% certain; the average length of communication before meeting up varies between 1 - 3 weeks. This is the time to get a feel for a person's attitude, see how compatible their views are with yours and decide if you click.
4, When in the communication phase expect equal responses and info. If they are holding back on normal details, such as their job, hobbies, family, etc, this is unusual behaviour. Listen to your gut feeling to figure out whether or not they are hiding something from you.
5, The biggest online dating scam involves (surprise, surprise) money. Most scammers will build up a rapport with their target and after a while drop hints about money problems and woes. Eventually they will then start asking for your help as a friend because their son is sick/ cat needs an operation/ mother is wrongfully arrested etc.
Whatever the reason is, no matter how compelling, NEVER give out money or bank details. An online dating forum is not the place to find financial aid and it is most certainly a scam. Report the user to the site and drop all contact with them.
6, When you are ready to go on a date, choose a place where you feel safe and secure. A coffee shop tends to be the ideal location because it isn't as full on as a meal in a restaurant and a bit more relaxed than a bar. Decide on a time and stick to it, don't exchange phone numbers beforehand, just remember to be on time!
7, Always meet your date at the chosen location, never let them pick you up. You don't want a stranger knowing where you live and most importantly, not being able to leave when you want.
8, As long as you are in a public place you should be fine without having an incognito group of friends at the next table; do whatever makes you feel most comfortable and safe. However, make sure someone knows what time you should be home from your date and where you are going.
9, If the date is not going well and you want to leave early, there is nothing stopping you. Be honest but polite, pay your way and leave.
10, If the date goes well and you want to see them again you can exchange your number or email address. However, a good rule of thumb is to go home and reflect on it before contacting them through the system with your details.
This is also a good way of dealing with those who you know you don't want to see again!