Technology is helpful in connecting friends and families who are physically miles apart. It’s also become a great bridge in uniting strangers looking for love. Social media platforms and dating websites, for instance, are taking the world by storm by creating virtual links to connect people who are looking to date and find a partner.
One of the most commonly used dating sites/apps used by singles today is Tinder. Tinder is an online dating app famous for its swiping features (swipe left & swipe right). While the platform has been proven to help turn matches into serious relationships, the dating platform is becoming a den of cybercriminals who take advantage of people’s emotions.
Tinder Scams & Dangers
When matches start to communicate, it’s typical that they check out each other’s social media accounts. Hackers create fake profiles where they link their Tinder accounts to. These are usually masked sites run by malware, which are specifically programmed to exploit confidential information. They route users to an unsecured webpage for easier hacking.
Catfishers are scammers who pretend to be someone they are not. They will use fake profile pictures and details to entice people to contact them. After this, their main objective is to move the conversation outside of Tinder. Since the dating site has tight safety protocols and security standards, they know better than performing their crimes within Tinder. Fraudsters will then ask you to continue communicating through a third-party app where they can easily sway you off-guard.
Yes, it still happens in the digital age. It has actually become quite easier to obtain leverage over a Tinder user such as revealing photos or videos. In exchange for not releasing these items, virtual blackmailers will then ask the victim to send money. Romance scams have become a trend as humans seem to be easily blinded by their emotions.
These are programs with too clean or too perfect Tinder profiles that are meant to converse with real users and eventually ask or illegally acquire sensitive data such as credit card information and social security numbers. Bots could be programmed to send/ask for code verification, to entice a user with more exciting photos in exchange for PIIs or to send phishing links.
Preventive Measures You Can Take
To protect yourself from the above and other Tinder scams, always be a step ahead by following the preventative measures listed below.
- When asked to take messaging outside of Tinder, choose a messaging app you personally use and trust.
- Never send compromising photos or videos of yourself to anyone.
- You choose the place and time when asked to meet up.
- Don’t click on any links or download files that your match sends you.
- Tinder verification is never done through a third-party, so ignore any other code verification prompts.
- When you receive generic answers on specific questions, you’re more likely talking with a bot or catfish.
- Users who keep on providing unreasonable excuses to avoid meet-ups are likely using a fake profile to hide their true intentions.
- Never swipe right on someone with a professionally edited profile photo or an empty bio.
- When they start asking for money, cut the connection right away.
- Even pro gamers can’t type as incredibly fast as bots.
- Use a reputable online search engine to perform a background check on people you’re connecting with and/or dating.
Even if you’ve taken the bait, it’s never too late for you. Several government agencies and private organizations can help you. Reach out to them, and make to let Tinder know of the crime or violation as soon as it happens.
Regardless of which dating app you use, always proceed with extreme caution. Online dating is not absurd. There’s nothing wrong about it as long as you use the apps wisely. Don’t get easily swayed by a sob story and learn to see through people’s lies.
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