The Cost of Love in the age of Online Dating

by February 13, 2017 0 comments

Nowadays, online dating is as normal as online shopping. According to the recently released Norton Mobile Survey, dating-based social networking is rapidly becoming the norm in India with about 38 percent of consumers admitting to having used online dating apps at some point in their lives. Clearly, online dating is a thriving industry, so it should come as no surprise that it is also on the radar for cybercriminals. In fact, 64 percent of women using online dating apps have experienced security-related problems as opposed to 54 percent men. Another survey called the Norton Cyber Security Insights Report highlighted that Indians consumers would rather crack the screen on their smartphone (59%) than have their location data leaked by an online dating app (41%), highlighting the fear of cyber stalking on individuals.

This Valentine’s Day, Norton can help you stay secure through following best practices.

How to spot online dating scams

Be wary of individuals contacting you with a sob story, asking you for money. If you encounter any of these individuals, report them to the service you are using and then block them.

To help verify the identity of the person that you’re talking to, ask for a recent photo. If they protest or makes excuses as to why they can’t provide a photo, it is best to err on the side of caution.

If someone requests a webcam chat, be especially careful about your behavior. The criminal can record the webcam session and they can use it to blackmail you. If the conversation you’re having starts to take an uncomfortable turn, disconnect the chat.

Don’t visit links sent to you by people you haven’t talked to for very long. Scammers will pose as a member and try to get people to click on links, usually leading to porn or webcam sites, and sometimes can even lead to malicious sites that download malware onto your computer.Scammers create fake profiles that are run by programs called bots, to get you to click on a link that will lead to either porn, malware or scam you out of credit card information. It’s actually quite easy to spot a bot, as they have a set of predetermined “canned” responses. If you notice that the conversation you’re having seems a bit off, or the person isn’t answering your questions directly, chances are it’s a

Scammers create fake profiles that are run by programs called bots, to get you to click on a link that will lead to either porn, malware or scam you out of credit card information. It’s actually quite easy to spot a bot, as they have a set of predetermined “canned” responses. If you notice that the conversation you’re having seems a bit off, or the person isn’t answering your questions directly, chances are it’s a bot.

Profile Do’s and Don’ts

Create a username and password that you have not used on any other accounts. Your username can be searched, and anything tied to that username can be used to locate you on other social or online platforms.

Set up a free email account to use with your dating account that has a unique name. Most sites offer their own in-site messaging that protects the anonymity of their members; however, people will often move their conversations to email or telephone as they get friendlier online.

When choosing an online dating site or app, be sure to choose a reputable, well-known service. Research the sites you’re interested in. Some sites allow you to either delete or disable your account. Since users sometimes return to online dating, the site retains your information. Make sure you check the site’s privacy policy and verify how data with these accounts are handled. Some dating sites make profiles public by default, which means that they can be indexed by search engines.

Join a paid site. Since members have to pay to communicate with each other, it’s likely that there will be more legitimate people and fewer scammers. Some of the paid services also conduct criminal background screenings.

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