The term Catfishing used to mean going fishing for a particular, bottom feeder with no scales. Now, in the digital revolution, it means setting up a fake, online profile to trick an unsuspecting person into a relationship. Many people catfish simply because they’re lonely but some people use the scam to get their victims to send them large sums of money.
How to protect yourself online
Nearly a quarter of all relationships begin online these days and it’s more convenient to meet people from the privacy of your living room than it is to go out to a crowded bar or night club. Unfortunately, this practice leaves you vulnerable to the Catfishing scam. Fortunately, there are a few ways to avoid being scammed.
Meet in person
First off, you should only start a relationship with people in your area. This way you can request to meet in person and if the other party persistently refuses, it should raise a red flag in your head. Another way to catch a Catfish is by requesting a session on Skype. This is the best alternative to actually meeting face-to-face and if the person you’re talking to refuses to Skype with you, they’re probably not the person in the pictures on their profile.
If the other party is refusing
You may already be emotionally involved with the other party and you feel they’re being honest but you have to think with your head and not your heart. If the other party is refusing to let you see them face-to-face then you’re more than likely dealing with a catfish and it’s better to find out sooner rather than later. Give the other party an ultimatum and let them know that you doubt they’re the person on their profile pictures. If they still refuse to meet or Skype with you, be strong and move on. It may be difficult initially but you’ll probably save yourself a lot of heartache in the long run.
An InfoGraphic to put things in perspective
Sandra from Instantcheckmate.com. kindly sent me this infographic on the phenomena of “Catfishing” I thought I’d share it with you to help you learn more about catfishing and Protect yourself.
To put things into perspective lots of people find love (Online dating is responsible for 120,000 marriages a year) so remember to follow these simple rules and you’ll have a better experience online.
Also think about this!
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