According to studies, only 10% of online dating users are sex offenders, so we are rather safe while online dating. This statistic is pretty comforting, but it doesn’t mean you should be diving into a date without some preparation.
Going to a first date is like going to an interview: you are trying to find out if you two make the perfect couple. Some people like to gather some information about their dates, before meeting them, to avoid surprises. After all, we don’t want to date someone who is already married, but in another state!
Search by phone number or email
When you know someone’s email you can use it to search more information about them. Their social accounts are the first ones to show up, as well as their resume. This should be enough to tell you if the person on the dating site is real and if they are the same as the person who showed up in the search.
If you have the phone number, you can do a phone number lookup, which should also show the social media profiles and any other advertisements which include the number of the searched person. As you can find the social profiles of the person you are looking for by email or phone number, you can also find out if they are married.
Search by username
One of the most frustrating situations is when you only know your date’s username. You have no idea who is that username, which can be potentially dangerous. This makes a pre-date search very important, as it might reveal things you don’t know about that individual. The first step is searching the username with Google, as this can provide you more social accounts, where you can find the person’s real name, as well as other details.
Search by image
You can also use the profile image to search a person online, as long as it is not a generic image, download from the internet. Just copy the image in Google image search and see what results you get. If the image was downloaded from the internet, it might be a red flag. If the image is real, you should get the person’s social profiles, maybe even the resume, as many people use the same image for all their online accounts, even professional ones.
Search by name
When you know the person’s name, you can use a lot of aggregators and apps to find out more about the person. However, this is highly controversial, as the line between stalking and looking is very fine at this point.
If you are looking to find past convictions or marriages, you should be looking on state courthouse sites. This can be hard, as you need to know the state where the crime was committed, which is most often different from the person’s current state. You can also find out if your potential date is a sex offender by searching the online register of sex offenders.
You can also use these searches to check out the person’s musical preferences and be reading preferences, just what you need to impress them on a first date.