Learning to recognize a catfish in chatelines
In the era of phone dating, chatlines have become notorious for catfishing. Although most of the profiles represent real people looking for fun, friendship, or companionship, a few may be scams or bait to lure you into giving your private information.
Here, we explore what it is and the actions you should take after you notice any red flags.
So when and how did Catfishing Start?
Catfishing is when a person pretends to be someone else to get money or your personal information; in a way, it’s similar to email scams. A catfish steals another’s photos, videos, and personal information and lures you into a relationship with them.
Once you are fond of them, your feelings may start to cloud your judgment, making you turn a blind eye even to clear red flags.
You ought to be constantly vigilant of the person you talk to over the phone, taking your time to learn more about them before you can trust them. This way, you will reduce the chances of falling prey to this online scam.
Red Flags to look out for in Your Phone Date.
Always watch out for these clear cut signs that may signal a fake user profile.
· They always turn Down Face Time.
If your date keeps declining your video call requests, this should arouse your suspicions. Unless it’s once or twice this has happened, you should strike this one off your chat line hotlist.
· They are not active Online.
Everyone who has a Facebook profile probably updates at least once a month, with active friends, a few posts, and even tagged photos. If your phone date rarely posts, they have no comment on their posts or have very few friends, that’s quite strange; it’s an instant red flag.
· Their Elaborate Stories Don’t Add Up.
A catfish is an expert at pulling emotional strings when they are after something. But no matter how well they orchestrate the act, they will probably tell so many lies that they lose track of the lies and the facts.
Once you learn over time that these stories aren’t adding up, that’s not a stranger you should easily trust.
· Vague and Unclear Job Details
These characters often change their work details, company, or position, or are always on the move, so much that you never meet in person. Even if they work remote jobs, which makes them flexible to travel, they should at least have a specialty or an office somewhere.
· They Ask for Money
Some catfish are after deceiving you into a relationship, while others are after money. Sending money to a stranger may just be a way of urging them on, rather than deterring them. You should quickly notice this warning sign and take precautions for your safety.
· The Relationship Progresses Surprisingly Fast.
If it looks and sounds too good to be true, it probably is. A catfish intends to take things to the next level sooner rather than later, so that they can carry out their intentions. Instead of feeling flattered, you should be more cautious.
What to do if you Suspect Your Phone Date to be a Catfish
If you suspect your date is lying about who they are, you can take a few steps to determine if your instincts are correct.
· Stalk them on Social Media
Even people less active on social media have friends or family who can vouch for their identity. Chances are you’ll find a weak link and uncover their true identity from past social media activity.
· Do a Reverse Google Image Search.
This useful tool by Google can help you quickly solve a scam problem. Just do a simple reverse search on the pics they sent you and cross out or confirm your suspicions. All you need to see is one similar picture from someone else’s profile to prove that indeed they are catfish.
· Hire a Private Investigator
While this may be extreme, you should consider this option if you think you are being stalked or baited by a catfish. Although it takes time, you will be surprised at how fast a private investigator can work in connecting all the dots to solve the mystery.
Exposing your catfish will not just help you; it will ensure there are no other victims will fall prey to them.
Whether you use chat lines or phone dating for adventure, or to find true love, always stay open to new opportunities and alert to the looming threats of catfishing. You can read more of our reviews and find out more about phone dating on the chatline guide.