The Ultimate Guide To Spotting Fake Dating Profiles
Dating sites provide a fantastic avenue for individuals who want to escape the harsh reality of life. They use these websites to find someone to share their thoughts and feelings with every once in a while. For some, it really helps. In some instances, this is where people meet the person that they want to spend their entire life with.
However, delving deeper into this landscape can be very tricky (sometimes dangerous and exploitative even), especially when these individuals don’t know how the game really works in this social space. The fact that spotting fake online dating profiles can be difficult, the chances are, they’ve landed on several fake dating profiles lurking like predators online waiting for the right time to execute their hostile agendas.
More often than not, these profiles look authentic with sterling images that easily attract unsuspecting individuals. They use their profiles to take advantage of other users by executing scams and other fraudulent practices. On the bright side, no matter how mesmerizing these profiles are, if a person has enough knowledge of how catfishing schemes work, recognizing and avoiding these red flags become a lot easier.
That said, this article will provide a short yet definitive guide on how to spot a fake profile on a dating site.
1. Their Profile Contents are Too-Good-To-Be-True (or Sketchy)
One thing to know in order to spot fake online dating profiles is individuals or organizations behind these fake profiles are target-focused. What this means is they are focused on catfishing a specific demographic.
They use “power words” that effectively set an enticing impression on people who are browsing a particular dating site. These “power words” enable these non-existing personas to become someone who they are not. Usually represented by too-good-to-be-true information about themselves, these individuals can be a God-fearing lady from New York, a Catholic widow, or they can even be an architect or a florist. Essentially, they can present made-up backgrounds and stories that imply they are worth “clicking”.
Always remember that upon opening someone’s profile, do intensive checking and verification. If the profile deems too-good-to-be-true, then it is more likely to be owned by a scammer.
2. Their Profiles Have Limited Photos
Having a limited number of pictures on one’s profile does not make them a scammer right away. Remember, there are people who are camera shy, or are simply not fond of taking a lot of pictures. At the same time, the lack of variety in their photos can also be a red flag that needs to be avoided.
There can be instances wherein scammers use someone else’s face to fool people. It is possible solely due to the abundant availability of different profiles of real persons on different social media platforms. Some people are quite careless with their privacy, and they leave everything on their social media accounts available for the public eye to access. By failing to establish privacy measures, they are making it easy for scammers to steal their personal information and exploit it for their criminal activities.
Individuals should always make it a habit to do an intensive investigation every time they click on someone else’s profile. If the photos are too “stocky” (looks more like a stock photo), this should serve as a cue that this is not a real person.
If they are having doubts about a particular person, they can always ask for a fresher or more recent image. They can even try asking for a video call. This way, they will know if the one they are talking to is a real person or not.
Pro Tip: If still in doubt about the images that the person sent, using Google’s “search by image” feature will do the trick.
3. Social Media is Missing
Most catfishers don’t have social media accounts linked to their dating site accounts. Users who are very suspicious of a particular profile, individuals can use the power of social media platforms to search sketchy members using the same name they use on their profile.
If the person is on a particular social media platform, make sure to check on the date the account was created. There are certain pointers on how to spot a fake dating profile using social media. Focus on questions like, ‘Is the profile active?’, ‘Was it updated?’, and ‘How many friends does the profile have?’
Always bear in mind that a newly created profile with a few friends is an indication that the account was created to make the non-existing persona socially present thereby making it look like it was made by a real person.
4. Automated Conversations
Most scammers use automated messages to handle multiple individuals simultaneously. This is the reason why some messages seem nonsensical. Fake profiles typically sound robotic, and sometimes there is even an excessive use of inappropriate emojis. This is especially true for non-English speaking scammers.
It is easy to identify a real person from a chatbot. Automated messages are not programmed to answer more complex questions. If the flow of conversation seems to be going a little strangely, it is a clear indication that the one sending messages from the other end is an automated answering machine.
5. They Are Straightforward and Outright Flirty
Some scams use daring photos of a person (a model mostly). They use these photos to leverage their catfishing schemes. They will send their unsuspecting victims steamy and erotic messages and by the time their victims fall into the bait, they start to reel in their victim and become even flirtier. A good number of these fake profiles will send limited and racy photos that are taken from pornographic material. Worse, some ask their victims for payment if they want more photos.
When money is suddenly thrown into the equation, it is a straight up sign of a scammer. Indeed, there are people who tend to exceed boundaries and be very flirty. That is why the best course of action is to give it some time to fully determine whether the person behind these photos is really looking for a match or is just trying to steal money from their victims.
How to Spot Fake Online Dating Profiles?
The world wide web is crowded with people carrying diverse personalities and intents. Though the internet is not a full-blown space of negativity, some people are just outright hostile and are adamant at using fake profiles to lure unsuspecting people to their traps and execute their harmful agenda.
Fortunately, there are specific methods and technologies that can be utilized to identify and get rid of these fraudulent acts. A notable way is to employ a moderation system to help pinpoint and eradicate these emerging toxic profiles and maintain a peaceful avenue where people can meet real people. This is the purpose of dating sites after all.
Chekkee’s dating site moderators are well-geared to handle all your scammer-related concerns. With a custom-built set of skills, Chekkee ensures that your dating site is well-protected against malicious and hostile individuals. Want to know more about the scope of our dating site moderation services? Contact us today!