It’s safe to say that now more than ever, we live in an online world. We work online, find entertainment online, and increasingly so, we date online. Whilst dating online can be a fun thing to do, it can also be dangerous if not handled with care.
Sometimes we can get so used to sharing parts of our lives online, that we can forget where exactly to draw the line. We here at campus.ie have compiled a list of guidelines to follow, to help you stay safe while dating online.
1. Be careful when giving out personal details such as your address or phone number, especially if you’re yet to meet the person you’ve been chatting to. This might seem like an obvious one but it’s definitely something that’s really important to remember. Stick with chatting on the platform where you met the person until you know you can trust them. At the end of the day, your safety is always the most important thing.
2. If you’ve decided to meet up for a date, great! However, try to avoid going to a quiet area with few people or to the other person’s house. It would be better to go somewhere where you know there will be lots of people around as that would be much safer. In a crowded area, it is easier to ask for help if push comes to shove.
3. If going on a date, tell a friend or family member that you are going, so that they can make sure to keep an eye on their phones should you need to contact them. Alternatively, you could let a member of staff (if you go to a pub/restaurant) know that you are going on a date with a person you met online so they too can keep an eye out for you.
4. Be careful with the information you share online with people, you really never can be too careful with a relationship that has been built online. It can seem like you know someone well if you talk all the time and feel a connection with them, but be smart about it. A funny meme or story is often times just enough to show them your true personality.
5. Choose your pictures wisely online. Go ahead and pick your favourite ones that show people the kind of life you lead. However, be careful with who you include in your pictures and if you have children, try not to include them on your profile.
Hopefully, you found these tips helpful and will take them into consideration in your future online dating endeavours. Don’t let them put you off though! Many people have met their lobster online. At the end of the day, the best advice is always to trust your gut.