🚩 How to spot red and green flags in online dating profiles | #DatingScams | #LoveScams | #RomanceScans

When it comes to online dating, it can feel like entering uncharted waters, with each profile promising a potential connection. In a world where digital connections blur the lines between reality and curated profiles, it’s crucial to distinguish the green flags signaling a promising match from the red flags hinting at potential problems.

“We’re very, thoughtful about what we put out there. Sometimes we forget that other people are very thoughtful in what they curate. But it’s not real. When you talk about dating and more people are moving to online dating, we want you to be a defensive dater,” shared Rania Mankarious, CEO of Crime Stoppers of Houston. “When you find a profile that is of interest to you, certainly spend your time studying the person. It’s absolutely okay to start talking to them, but become a little investigator, do a little bit of reverse digging, see if their profile picture comes up anywhere else.”

SEE ALSO: How Houston-based dating app Wingr is trying to make online dating fun, safe

Green flags:

  • Consistency across social profiles (e.g., LinkedIn matches Facebook).

  • Willingness to engage in communication, including video calls, before meeting in person.

  • Respecting your boundaries and preferences, both in conversation and when making plans.

Red flags:

  • Excessive eagerness to meet privately or get emotionally invested too quickly.

  • Requests for financial assistance or constantly having emergencies.

  • Blaming exes for problems in relationships.

  • Overly monitoring or excessively engaging with your social media.

  • Demonstrating clinginess in the early stages of dating.

SEE ALSO: Texas ranked among most dangerous states for online dating: survey

These flags serve as indicators to help navigate the online dating landscape and prioritize safety and well-being.

Dating tips:

  • Take your own transportation to and from dates.

  • Inform friends about your whereabouts and consider sharing your location with them during the date.

  • Avoid going home alone with someone you’ve just met.

RELATED: How to stay safe while using dating apps and websites

“We want people to trust their gut feelings when they’re out; don’t leave drinks unattended. Be mindful of if you have a headache and they’re quick to offer you something to take. Keep your guard up,” Mankarious shared. “Unfortunately, the world we live in and we want you to be mindful of your emotional well-being, your physical safety, your finances, and your personal information.”

Scam awareness

Mankarious shared how dating scams can affect people of all ages. The number one scam Mankarious shared that affects the elderly is dating scams.

SEE ALSO: New twist on old ‘romance scam’ has thieves asking to send you money

“They think that they’re chatting with somebody who has feelings for them,” she said. “Their goal is to have friendship and communication, but what’s happening is that they end up spending a lot of money trying to help this person, whether it’s getting a ticket to visit or helping this person pay for something they need with their grandchildren or with their home.”

Teenagers, for example, can also benefit from Mankarious’ dating advice.

“A lot of young people are on dating apps when there are few dating apps that are catered to young users, but also young users find adult dating apps to be funny. A lot of them set up profiles because they think it’s funny, but they end up communicating with people or at least being exposed to things that are inappropriate,” Mankarious said. “The safe dating conversation and the red flag conversation used to be for the young single adults in the home. Now we’re seeing it expanded to the older people in the home and the teens.”

RELATED: Top tricks thieves use to trick senior citizens

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