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Fake Profiles – Why Are They There?

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Q: I’ve been dating online for about a month or so on a couple of different dating sites. When I search, I keep seeing profiles that are obviously fake. Are these put there by the websites to try and get people to join? Does this mean I should find better dating sites that are more honest?

A: While I can’t say for certain that there are no dodgy sites out there who use fake profiles to fool unsuspecting daters into signing up, my own experience tells me that more often than not these profiles are not put up by the sites themselves but by Internet scammers intent on making a quick buck.

Even sites that are heavily moderated to remove such unwanted criminals occasionally fail to catch them all. This is especially true of the bigger sites where thousands of profiles can be added every day. Most dating sites nowadays give you the option to report such profiles to their moderating team so that they can be removed. It’s good practice to do this when you come across a fake profile, especially on the free and cheaper dating sites, where such practice is essential for the smooth running of the site. Unfortunately, it can take time for dodgy profiles to be removed, as the moderating teams can get quite busy (or be quite small to begin with, especially on free sites). If this bothers you, you may want to find a site that’s a bit quicker at removing problem users. On the other hand, if you can spot the fake profiles so easily, they are obviously not a threat to you but more of a harmless nuisance.

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