Editor’s Note: This article was originally published on July 12, 2018, and has been completely revamped and updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.
According to the Pew Research Center, three in ten adults in the United States have used an online dating site or a dating app. Having an online profile on a dating app or site comes with its risks. Not only could you be involved in a scam, but also be catfished. This applies to all social media profiles, not just online dating apps.
Typically, people meet through friends, family, college, or shared activities. But now, dating apps and sites have changed this dynamic, at least in some cases. Knowing someone through the internet exposes you to a person who might even be on the sex offender registry.
Since the chance of being catfished, scammed, or being involved in a dangerous situation when using an online dating app or site has become public knowledge, people with an online dating profile might want to run a background check before advancing a relationship with a person they met online.
To ensure your future love interest is being honest, you can perform a dating background check.
Everyone would think that dating sites and apps do a background check on their users, but they don’t. Match Group, which is the largest dating app conglomerate, doesn’t perform any background checks. Until now, the method they’ve used is verification, but it’s not as confident as it should be. You’d be shocked by the data that CNN gathered on dating sites’, knowledge of the complete lack of control they have over sex offenders using their platforms.
Knowing these facts, you might be wondering how to do a background check on someone?
Learn to take this essential step to find love online!
1. Perform a Google Search
One of the easier ways you can figure out what the person you match online has hidden in their skeleton closet is to perform a Google search.
A lot can be uncovered by Google searching the person’s name, as you can easily find their phone number, Facebook profile, address, college graduation information, and more.
Even finding their Twitter account can provide you with insight into how they lean politically or what they have to tweet about.
Run a reverse image search to verify that the images they have on their profile or the ones they have sent you are not from stock photos.
2. Having No Online Presence is a Reg Flag
If you do your investigation and there is nothing to be found on your potential love interest, be wary of this red flag.
Most people do have social media profiles where they happily share moments between friends and family. Having no online presence is just uncommon nowadays.
Avoid being catfished by establishing credibility with your online date.
Social Media profiles can tell a lot about someone.
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3. Check for Criminal Records as Part of Your Dating Background Check
Another critical factor when online dating involves looking for criminal records.
If the person you are getting to know has a criminal past, you’ll want to delve further into what charges were brought upon them and how long ago they were up to no good.
Would you date a registered sex offender? You can access the National Sex Offender Registry to find information on someone. Each Estate has its conditions of use. Avoid getting into legal problems, and read carefully.
Criminal records are also public knowledge for you to look into someone’s criminal past easily. Many public records are online, but their access is limited. To avoid any legal problems, it’s best if you hire a professional.
Performing a dating background check can save you from dating the wrong people.
Of course, with any online dating, you need to be aware of the consequences of stalking anyone too closely. Remember to leave room for the other person to speak on behalf of whatever information you find from your search.
Be sure to discuss any concerns you have with your date if you plan on moving things along in your relationship.
Getting Accurate Information
There are various free online background checks and other sites such as TruthFinder or InstantCheckmate, but they are not trustworthy, nor do they dig deep enough into the information.
Getting the help of professional private investigators provides you with the accurate and legally gathered information. If you want to truly make sure the online profile you are getting to know on a dating app or site is real, and if he/she has any criminal records, hiring a private investigator is what you need. Some data online is not public and can only be accessed by certain entities.