Ensure Your “Date” is Not a Scammer
These are great ways to handle initial phone conversations, but they only work in the beginning while you establish whether or not you’re comfortable giving out your number.
Dual Phone Numbers
Many phone companies will now allow you to have two phone numbers for one cell phone. That way you can route business and personal calls to separate numbers. This is a great option for people who want to have a dedicated online dating phone number but also one for personal/business use that goes to well-known people like family members.
The number used for online dating can have your name blocked so that when you call the other party it comes up as “unknown caller” and that way you won’t be giving your personal number out. (This is also really helpful when asked to fill out membership cards or enter drawings)
Burner and Pre-Paid Phones
Burner numbers differ from a second phone line because they’re virtually untraceable. If you want to protect your number and location, a burner phone will give you the added layer of privacy you need. There are also burner phone apps that will scramble your phone when making a call. Look for these in your phone’s app store.
A second option is getting a prepaid phone. While still traceable, having a prepaid phone allows you to buy a cheap second phone, pay for a prepaid no contract plan and have another way to make a call without worrying that your location and identity will be discovered.
We mentioned at the start of the article that it’s important to proceed with caution because you don’t want to find out that your prospective date is a scammer. The sad truth is that a lot of scammers prey upon people on dating sites because they know they’re looking for love and companionship. They use that as a weapon. They might promise marriage for financial help, or vow to be loyal if you help with some other favor.
Wanting to Talk or Meet Too Quickly
If someone is pushing to meet or talk on the phone too fast, raise a red flag. You should never feel pressured into talking to someone you meet online and anyone pushing you to meet or talk too soon could be after something.
Asking for Something
During the course of your online conversations if the other person starts asking for favors, including money or doing something as a favor, be advised that this is probably a scammer.
Anyone asking for something in the middle of an online dating site shouldn’t be trusted and you should cease communication at once. If you have already exchanged phone numbers, contact the local police and let them know what is going on. There’s a good chance this person has scammed other unsuspecting victims and you can help stop it.
If you are suspicious and you have some back info about them like their phone number, name, etc. You can do a quick search here to see if they are legit.
In the end it’s important to pay attention when you’re using an online dating site. Most people are great, but the small percentage of people taking advantage of others will ruin your experience. Exchanging phone number is a big step and you should make sure you feel safe doing so. If you’re concerned there are a number of ways to protect yourself. Taking these steps now will help to protect yourself later on.
Using *67 is one of the original ways to block your phone number so if your prospective partner gives you a phone number then you can dial *67 before dialing to keep the call recipient from seeing your number. You can also request that your number be listed as private so when you place a call your name and number don’t show up.