If you don’t want to click the link, here’s a quick summary of the report: “Use some goddamned common sense.” Okay, so you probably figure you’re neither dumb nor desperate enough to fall for scams like these. Woo hoo, score one victory for the online dater, right? Hailing down on their own parade, Match admitted that the background checks may do little good.
In one particularly sad story, a New York woman was separated from more than $25,000 by a man she met on Match who claimed he was a soldier stationed in Afghanistan. Then there are the cases of both men and women getting blackmailed after being coerced into exposing themselves via webcam (though these incidents aren’t strictly confined to online dating sites).
The internet is peppered with stories like these, and it’s become such a serious issue that the FBI has released a press report on how to recognize an online dating scam artist. In 2011, Match finally announced that they would start implementing background checks.
You see, businesses have sprung up around the idea that if you’re too busy – or lazy – to handle all the groundwork online dating demands, you can just hire someone to do it for you.
Here’s a company that will write your online dating profile, send emails on your behalf, and basically cover for your ass up until you meet someone for the first date.
This means that 19 out of 20 profiles on these sites are either past members who aren’t around anymore, or non-paying members who can’t respond.