How to Spot a Catfish: 6 Red Flags of Online Dating Scams

May 16th · 3 min read

Guardio Research Team
Guardio Research Team

It's no secret that online dating can be fraught with scams and catfishes. These days, it seems like just about everyone is looking for love on the internet, and many people are willing to go to great lengths to find it. While there are plenty of honest, genuine people out there looking for a relationship, there are also those looking to take advantage of unsuspecting victims. If you're thinking about trying online dating or have already given it a shot, it's essential to be aware of the potential red flags of online dating scams. Knowing what to look for can help protect yourself from falling victim to one of these scams.

1. They Have a Sob Story

One of the most common warning signs of an online dating scam is when someone you're talking to has a sob story. This could be anything from them being widowed to having a sick relative who needs expensive medical treatment. These stories are often used to gain sympathy and gain your trust.

2. They're Asking for Money

If someone you're talking to online starts asking you for money, that is a huge red flag. No matter their story, no one should ask you for money unless you've already established a relationship with them. If someone asks you for money, it's best to cut off all communication with them immediately.

3. They're Avoiding Your Questions

Another warning sign to look out for is if someone is avoiding your questions. If you're asking them questions about themselves and they're constantly changing the subject or giving vague answers, that's a sign that they might be hiding something. It's important to have open and honest conversations with someone you're talking to online, so if they're avoiding your questions, that's a big red flag.

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4. Their Profile Is Fake

One of the easiest ways to spot a catfish is by looking at its profile. If their profile seems too good to be true, or if they only have one or two pictures, that's a sign that they might be using a fake profile. There are also some red flags to look for in the photos themselves. If the images seem staged or if they're all professional-looking headshots, that's another indication that the profile might be fake.

5. They're Moving Too Fast

If someone you're talking to online is moving too fast, alarm bells should be ringing. They might be trying to rush into things to take advantage of you. If someone is pressuring you for personal information or trying to get you to meet up with them before you're ready, it's best to cut off communication with them.

6. They're Refusing to Meet In Person

Meeting in person is an integral part of getting to know someone, and if they're refusing to do that, it's a sign that they might be hiding something. If someone you're talking to online refuses to meet in person, that's a huge red flag. If someone is constantly making excuses for why they can't meet up with you, it's best to move on and find someone else to talk to.

These are just a few caution signs to look out for when talking to someone online. There are plenty of other people out there, and you don't want to waste your time talking to someone who isn't being honest with you. If you ever feel like something isn't right, it's always best to trust your gut and move on.

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