The world of online hook-ups is fast and flashing. According apps are exploding and casual dating was never as easy as in times of Ashley Madison, C-Date and Co. New questions are coming up with the expanding world of fast and available casual dating.
Hooking up on the internet evolved from a niche for womanizer and nymphos to a kind of leisure activity among all social and intellectual classes. Sadly, the hook-up community is not safe from some bad eggs who try to fraud people.
We researched and collected the top 10 hookup scams for you, pointing out red flags and how to avoid them for safe and fulfilling casual dating experience.
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Table of Contents
- 10 Red Flags to Recognize HookUp Scam
- 1. All photos look professional
- 2. Exceptionally attractive while overly attached
- 3. Money, money, money
- 4. Your potential hookup is too interested in personal information
- 5. The hookup-app seems dodgy
- 6. Webcam extortion
- 7. Suspicious links and advertising
- 8. Hot chatbots open for everyone and everything
- 9. Security-ID Scam
- 10. How to Bypass Hook-Up Scam
10 Red Flags to Recognize HookUp Scam
Most casual dating sites regularly check their user’s profiles to keep their services fraud- and spam-free, still they can´t filter all kinds of fake-profiles out. Scammers use smart techniques to appear serious and trustworthy.
We summarize the top indicators of at least suspicious profiles and their tactics. Keep in mind that these signs of fraudulent behaviour usually occur in combinations. If you want to avoid being hooked, keep in mind following red flags of frauding:
1. All photos look professional
Some agencies have photographers and users tend to have extra photosessions for their dating profiles, too. Still, most use their smartphone or mid-range cameras and don´t look like cover-girls and -boys from glossy magazines.
Check the overall profile, the synergy between their description and the photos. If you get suspicious, check the reverse image search by Google. You can upload the suspicious photo there and Google shows you similar or the same picture on other sites. If your potential flirts photo appears in other contexts, you can be sure to being scammed.
2. Exceptionally attractive while overly attached
Most of us dream about being desired by attractive people. We all have our own beauty and appealing traits and wish to be admired for those. Now, if someone who is obviously out of our league is suddenly very interested and gets overly friendly and romantic on a liaison-site very fast, we should be alarmed.
Scammers tend to use the vulnerability of lonely people to fall for the idea of an outstandingly attractive affair and partner. If it´s a scam, the person will give you a feeling of being loved very fast while not giving you a chance to meet them in person. They will find all kinds of excuses to avoid meeting you.
3. Money, money, money
At some point of your conversation a scammer will explain to you, why you should send them money. Usually they come up with crucial situations involving medical conditions and family members. They also might use the fact that you won´t be able to meet them without sending money for a flight, a train ticket or something like that.
If you offer to visit them, they will find excuses why you can´t meet in their place, for example: because they work overseas or on an oilrig that can´t be reached.
Remember to NEVER give your credit card information or other personal data away to internet dates that you never met in real life. Even if you meet them, this kind of private information and all kinds of money transfer are not part of any casual or fresh relationship.An inappropriate place to meet:
First dates can be exciting and full of sparks and sexual tension. Still you never should meet at a secluded space where you`re not able to reach out to other people in an emergency case. A trustable person will not lure you to a too private place for a first date.
You should also avoid places, where you depend on your dates car to get away in case you want to break up the date. Especially while dating casually you need to be thoughtful about the first location you choose. This applies to women and men.
While these rules are not always taken seriously by men, there have been situations, where men were lured into secluded places and robbed or even worse, keep that in mind.
4. Your potential hookup is too interested in personal information
When questions get into a too personal direction, about your family or your financial or professional life, your alarm bells should ring. Why should a casual encounter focus on such personal details about your life?
When an encounter is interested in your children, you really should get concerned. Sites usually have options to report and flag inappropriate users. You should report your concerns to the site so they can take proper measures.
5. The hookup-app seems dodgy
If you have concerns about your data’s safety on a casual dating site, keep as much personal information as possible to yourself. You are not obligated to provide real life information about yourself, so if you leave incorrect information, it might be for your best.
But consider that most sites use information to provide you with suitable matches, so if you give false information, you can get unsuitable matches.
In that case your whole hook-up plans can be sabotaged as you may not match with people from your area.
6. Webcam extortion
It begins with a harmless chat on a hook-up site or social media, the potential flirt lives abroad, often in East Europe, Asia or Africa.
They befriend you on different social media channels and things get romantic. They plan to meet you someday but until then you are invited into videocalls. Surprise, their camera is broken.
That´s were the scam begins, they convince you into sexual and revealing acts like touching yourself, undressing and other things in front of your webcam.
Afterwards they reveal their fraud and claim to have a recording of your video performance and threaten you to share it with your social media contacts and to disclose it to the public, if you don´t buy yourself free.
Casual dating profiles usually don´t contain links. Scammy profiles on the other hand are advertising services like webcam-sites and fake dating communities. Be aware that even a click on one of these links may result in downloading a virus.
Check the profile of your potentially date for those kinds of links and also for spelling and grammar. A bad grammar in combination with suspicious links is certainly a fake profile.
8. Hot chatbots open for everyone and everything
HookUp profiles usually make very clear, what the user specifically looks for and which kind of dates are taboo.
Fake profiles seem to be open for everything and everyone, no restrictions, no rules for dates, everything is a subject of interest in their profile.
They mark all activities as interesting and give vague information about themselves to match everyone’s desires. Fake profiles also use chatbots in conversations.
If you have doubts on the authenticity of a conversation, write something unexpected or start an unusual topic and see how your match reacts. Modern chatbots react to keywords with predefined answers, so write something with a twist to outsmart and reveal a bot.
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9. Security-ID Scam
One of the common and most spread dating scams. The fraud can be performed on every trustable HookUp platform like Ashley Madison, C-Date or Zoosk. The scammers use an appealing profile and lure you into conversations where they demand a kind of security ID from you to know that you are “real”. Quite ironic, isn´t it?
The first red flag is hoist when they send you a link to that mysterious security ID site you and no one else ever heard of. It seems that you can verify your profile there. The sites are mostly named after the service you are using including the sites name in their URL like “tindersecurity” or similar.
Those ID´s usually cost around 30 pound and are purchased with a credit card or services like PayPal.
After you purchase the fake security ID, your match will disappear and you receive a worthless fake ID number with a ridiculous badge. Sometimes they don´t even bother to send you anything.
10. How to Bypass Hook-Up Scam
What do we
learn? If you recognize one of the red flags, avoid any further contact
or at least try to find out more about the person behind the profile. If
something seems to be too alluring, you should think it through carefully and
maybe deliberate certain online flirts with close friends or relatives. A
third persons view might clarify a weird or insecure situation faster and point
out red flags for you.
Trust your instincts. Sometimes it´s the only way to avoid being mistreated. If you see a red flag, check your gut about the situation and probe into it. The worst on getting scammed online might not even be the loss of money, but the feeling of shame and helplessness.
Victims may to fall into depression, as they feel helpless and alone when they aren´t. There are organisations and communities victims can contact after experiencing hook-up scam.
Attorneys, social services and organizations are there to help. Don´t hesitate to contact your local organisation and to get support in your case of fraud. Not only will this help you to move on, it is also liberating for your emotions and mind to open up about it.
It´s well known that the promise of a romantic encounter with an attractive match is a powerful tool to manipulate lonely and vulnerable people into frauds and scam. Keep your mind conscious.
If you follow up, recognize the red flags and sort them out, you will be able to live out your romantic fantasies to the fullest without wasting your thoughts on any doubts.
And now… Chop-chop, darlings! There is no time to waste, we wish you happy HookUps and lots of fun!