Protecting your identity online dating

Banks will never ever ask for your information in this way. Keep a close eye on your bank statements Really savvy people cross check their receipts with the payment history on their statements, but this isn't absolutely necessary - just keep an eagle eye out for any unfamiliar transactions to recipients you've never heard of. Monitor post you get through your door, as well as online Be alert to anything suspicious in the mail, like pre-approved credit cards you've not applied for and other financial offers.

If in doubt, call the bank directly to check or, better still, delete the email. Keep your communications networks secure Password protect your Wi-Fi so hackers in the local area can't use your connection to carry out malicious activity. Check for the https:// Before entering payment details into any website, check the web address has an 's' – which stands for secure – after the http.

Some sites even offer the member an option to sign up for a background check." Here are her top tips: • Do a Google search for your date's name. • Use Google Voice and create a phone number exclusive to dating. • If you're uncomfortable on a date for any reason, just get up and walk out. The online daters I spoke to voiced mixed feelings about their experiences.

But the rule is, if they're easy to remember, they're easy to crack, too.

Here are a few safety tips you should know before you go looking for love online, with some reassurances from seasoned "virtual" daters. Wait until you actually meet the person and build up a level of trust before you share your address, phone number or real email address.

(You typically use an encrypted email on these sites.) Stay local.

Users can test the security of their own profile here. Exclude important personal information from your social media profiles Details like your phone number, address, children’s age or school can all present ways for hackers to glean more knowledge.

On Facebook, that means culling any 'friends' you don't know, minimising the details in your 'About Me' section and being selective about hitting the 'like' button, all of which will make you harder to find – particularly when Facebook's new search tool, Graph Search, is rolled out in the UK. Check your social media privacy settings Change all Facebook settings to “Friends Only” for all posts for a more secure profile.

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