Valentine's Day: Don't be caught out in the online dating world

Many couples are celebrating Valentine's Day, but others are still searching for love
First things first
Keep your cards close to your chest
Forget fake news, this is about fake profiles
Spotting a scammer
Taking the relationship offline

Take a look at ways to stay safe when online dating by scrolling through the gallery

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

As you'll no doubt be sick of reading by now, it's Valentine's Day. And while for some people that means bringing home a bedraggled bouquet of flowers, being fleeced at the local French bistro and watching Love Actually for the Nth time, for the world's singletons it's time to head into the jungle that is online dating.

Yep, there's nothing like the yuckiness of other people's PDAs to make single people fire up their smartphones and start swiping left and right. With all the social pressure it applies, all the nauseating gloating it elicits from the loved-up brigade, Valentine's Day is like a giant advert for sites such as Tinder and match.com.

But if you're frantically trying to arrange an internet-based rendezvous for tonight, or creating your first profile in the hope of hooking your dream partner by this time next year, be warned: it can be scary out there.

For everyone who's found love online, there's another person who's been duped or disappointed. Plenty of people have turned up to find the person they met on the net looks completely different in person, or is a different age. Plenty more have found out that the person who seemed so sweet and funny online is actually a narcissistic drip in person - and has serious difficulty finding their wallet.

These dating disasters, while frustrating, aren't that big an issue. All you lose is a night of your life, and perhaps the cost of the bar bill. But, if you're the victim of an online scam, the cost can be far higher.

According to Which? research by charities has shown romantic scammers alone made £41 million from British people last year. On average each person lost around £11,500, which is a hefty amount of money to lose in an attempt to find a partner.

So how can you make a success of the online dating world, and avoid getting ripped off in your quest for romance? To help, we've compiled some important tips to follow, with the help of Get Safe Online.

Take a look at them in the gallery above

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