This is the number one fear single women over 40 have about using online dating. They worry about being scammed or catfished.
‘Catfishing’ is a term for the process of luring people into false relationships, or when someone gives out false information about themselves.
Is the fear of being made a fool and being used by bad dudes keeping you offline? Or does it keep you up at night worried that the guy you have a date with next week is going to use and and lie to you?
Here is what I tell my clients:
He might. But it’s highly unlikely. Just like driving to the grocery store. Will you get in an accident? You might. But it’s highly unlikely.
If you never leave the house, you’ll starve. And if you never go online, your chances of meeting your forever love plummet.
Just know this:
And, like preventing a car crash, there are things you can do to be smart about guys you choose to meet. There are even services out there who will help you vet your dates.
While I don’t necessarily recommend you pay someone to do this, this article has info on that and other great free tips on how to take precautions. I especially like the idea of doing a Google search using someone’s photo. That will tell you right away if he’s on other sites as someone else.
In that case, simply report him, delete him, and buy-bye!
It’s smart to be cautious, but not at the expense of losing out on meeting someone great. You aren’t an 18-year-old girl anymore. The knee-jerk “Oh my goodness, this is scary” nonsense is old and no longer serves you.
You can make good decisions and take care of yourself by using your ability to weigh options, make complex decisions and exercise your assertiveness. You probably do this every day with your career, your family, even with the dry cleaner; dealing with single men should be no exception.
Just remember, when it comes to getting scammed or catfished online, you can be in control.
PS: Suzy, a DLAGU community member, left me this oh-so-smart comment. I wanted to be sure you read it:
It’s probably obvious but I did want to point out that women using dating sites should also keep in mind that the photo reverse search thing can also be used on their photos so, if they are concerned about safety, they might want to avoid using any photo in their online profile that they have also used on their social media accounts, Linked-in profile, etc. since anyone on the dating site could use it to find out a lot of information about them including their full name, work place, etc. ~Suzy