How to Protect Yourself When Dating

As the dating pool expands, so do the risks. Going out into the dating world without basic protection mechanisms is utter foolishness. Unmask and other background check experts advise you to choose dating apps carefully and run a background check on someone you’re about to meet in real life. These are the best ways to stay safe.

1 Choose Dating Apps Wisely

Apps and sites that let anyone message anyone is best avoided. You can’t avoid disrespectful or otherwise unpleasant messages entirely, but you’ll get fewer of them if you choose an app that requires both people to show interest before they can begin chatting.

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2 Use Unique Pictures

To protect yourself from the aftermath of a reverse image search, use a picture on your dating profile that you haven’t used anywhere else. It’s child’s play to find someone on social media if their dating profile picture shows up on their Twitter or Instagram account too.

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3 Watch Geography Settings

You don’t want strangers getting information that makes it easy to find out where you live. Many dating sites use people’s locations. Either disable the setting or don’t use the site.

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4 Share Few Personal Details

Never include contact information, your last name, or social media usernames on your profile. Make sure you don’t have a lot of personal details on your social media. These details might make it easy for someone to find you in real life.

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5 Set up a Designated Dating Number

At the beginning, don’t give them your real number. You can choose a Google Voice phone number, which you forward to your phone. It goes like this: create an account on Google Voice and choose a number available in your area (based on the area code). Once you’ve done that, follow the simple instructions to complete the setup.

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6 Check for mutual friends

Some dating sites show you when you and your prospective date have friends in common. Contact them and ask for more information about the person.

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7 Before You Meet Someone, Run a Background Check

If you’re hitting it off with someone, it’s only a matter of time before you’ll want to meet in real life. Don’t be too trusting. Use a background check service to find out more about them. Many people will lie on dating sites, even about major things, like their very identity.

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8 Don’t Overshare

The person has checked out, and you’ve met, maybe already been on a few dates. You can even say you’re in a relationship now. Still, take care not to make yourself too vulnerable. Don’t share anything you don’t feel comfortable sharing, and don’t say something you suspect your date won’t feel comfortable hearing. They might not take personal information all that well. One sign you definitely shouldn’t share private things is if they’re not sharing anything like that about themselves.

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9 Don’t Overanalyze

Like sharing, it’s easy to take an analysis of something you heard too far. We’re prone to overanalyze people’s words and actions when we’re in love. Take what they say and do at face value because we want our significant other to fulfill our needs, we might try to find a hidden meaning that is in line with how we want them to be.

Believe what they say instead of investing your energy attempting to uncover what they “are really trying” to communicate. If they tell you they’re not ready for a serious relationship, believe them, even if their profile or behavior indicated otherwise at first. Don’t force them to meet your parents or friends if they’re hesitant to do so. Give them time and space to build a relationship. Dating and relationships aren’t a sprint to the finish line. Rather, they are a cross-country marathon. You’re in it for the long haul.

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