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07-Jun-2015 16:21

“Catfishing,” a scam that involves posting false information to trick somebody into a relationship for monetary gains, caused .4 million in collective losses in 2011 alone.Women are especially vulnerable to these online perils.A staggering 54 percent of survey participants complained that they encountered a person’s profile that was misleading.Whereas most people tweak their profiles to look better, some create entirely fake profiles to take advantage of unsuspecting victims.I was walking on California's Stinson Beach in August 2009 when I struck up a conversation with a woman who seemed utterly delightful.Captivated, I invited her to dinner at my house that evening. While I ate my dinner, she drank hers — then refused to leave. My acquaintance of 12 hours bizarrely insisted that we were living together.

— so I summoned my next-door neighbor, a woman, for help. There isn't much privacy, but you'll be grateful for the presence of others if an unpleasant situation develops. I once had a coffee date with a woman who grew increasingly angry — and vocal — over her mistreatment by an ex-boyfriend. If a coffee date shows up with a bad attitude, a bad temper or a foul mouth, head for the door. You might ask, for example, if your date has close friends: A "yes" indicates he or she is capable of connecting with others; a "no" suggests a lack of intimacy skills. If you're unsure, consider asking another couple to join you.Some online dating platforms like e Harmony.com, and Sparks Networks (operator of JDate and Christian Mingle) have even begun scanning clients for instances of sexual assault, identity theft, and violence since 2012.The reason for these safety measures is that a complete stranger on the Internet can pretend to be anything—while actually intending to harass, scam or even hurt their victims.More than 40 percent of the women participating in the Pew research study stated to have been victims of ‘unwanted approaches’ compared to only 17 percent of men.Regarding social media websites, a third of women (and 19 percent of men) reported that they had blocked someone for flirting or acting in an inappropriate manner.

— so I summoned my next-door neighbor, a woman, for help. There isn't much privacy, but you'll be grateful for the presence of others if an unpleasant situation develops. I once had a coffee date with a woman who grew increasingly angry — and vocal — over her mistreatment by an ex-boyfriend. If a coffee date shows up with a bad attitude, a bad temper or a foul mouth, head for the door. You might ask, for example, if your date has close friends: A "yes" indicates he or she is capable of connecting with others; a "no" suggests a lack of intimacy skills. If you're unsure, consider asking another couple to join you.Some online dating platforms like e Harmony.com, and Sparks Networks (operator of JDate and Christian Mingle) have even begun scanning clients for instances of sexual assault, identity theft, and violence since 2012.The reason for these safety measures is that a complete stranger on the Internet can pretend to be anything—while actually intending to harass, scam or even hurt their victims.More than 40 percent of the women participating in the Pew research study stated to have been victims of ‘unwanted approaches’ compared to only 17 percent of men.Regarding social media websites, a third of women (and 19 percent of men) reported that they had blocked someone for flirting or acting in an inappropriate manner.In 2011, a client sued the company saying she was raped on a date with a repeat sex offender—who had had at least six prior sex offense convictions—she had met through the site.