Despite the influx of dating apps that have exploded onto the scene, Tinder is still the app of choice for meeting potential lovers today. The problem is the app has become a feeding ground for scammers creating fake profiles solely for the purpose of extracting money from users. Here are some tips to help you weed out the fakers on Tinder.
I have many friends who are dedicated users of Tinder. Most of them are male and many of them have complained about fake profiles of girls on the app. They talk about seeing profiles of attractive women and swiping right in hopes of being matched with them. The women will initiate a friendly chat, which will usually result in them asking to take the conversation off Tinder and onto some other messaging app.
From there it could go a few different ways. The women would either:
- Ask you to click on a link to download another app, which will fill your device with malware.
- Ask you to pay money to continue to chatting with them.
- Ask for your personal information under the guise of sending you gifts but in actual fact they just want to steal your identity.
- Continue to toy with you and urge you to do things for them such as sending them money.
The sad part is most of the time these profiles aren't even being controlled by real people and are, instead, spam bots. These bots are becoming more sophisticated and are now even able to imitate the speech patterns of the perfect "girl next door".
Tinder itself is aware of the issue and has been working to reduce the number of fake accounts on the app, but it continues to be a big problem for users. While this problem seems to be more prevalent when guys use Tinder, in the past I've seen fake male profiles while using the app myself so us ladies aren't completely safe from these scams.
There are a few ways you can spot a fake profile on Tinder which can help you quickly swipe left to escape any potential exploitation attempts from scammers. According to the Council of Better Business Bureaus, the four tell-tale signs are:
- They are too quick to reply, which is a key indicator that they're a spam bot. Be wary of profiles you're immediately matched with.
- They want to take the conversation off Tinder.
- If your match says things out of context and sounds like nonsense, chances are they're a bot. Try asking them a question and if their answer doesn't make sense, ditch them.
- If it looks too good to be real, it's probably a fake. Seriously, do you think a girl that looks like a bikini model would need to use Tinder? If the profile photo is a glamour shot, it's probably a fake.
It is also prudent to follow these basic tips when using Tinder to steer clear of pretenders:
- Don't ever give money to people on dating sites, no matter how desperate they say they need it. You don't want to be that person on the news crying about how you wired all your life savings to someone who you've never met before only to find out that if was all a sham.
- Screenshot photos from Tinder profiles, then drag and drop them into Google Image Search to see if they're taken from an existing source. Scammers love stealing images off various websites.
- Check for mutual friends and common interests. If you're matched with a profile that doesn't share any mutual friends and common interests with you, then please exercise caution.
Do you have any stories about encounters with scammers on Tinder or any other online dating services? Let us know in the comments.