Tuesday

Internet Dating SCAMS


Photo By: ChrisSullivan1

Internet Dating SCAMS

Elena Solomon ©, author of 12 Simple Rules

Before you even think about online dating, you must know about dating scams.

This is serious: if you get too deeply involved, a dating scam can significantly hurt not only your heart, but your finances, too.

Make sure you know how to protect yourself from fraud when using dating sites!

Internet personals, online introduction agencies and matchmaking sites allow anyone to join for free, and they usually do not screen their members. It means you never know who is behind this pretty photo: a real beautiful woman or a con artist who downloaded a photo of an unknown model from the Internet.

There are four types of online dating scams:
  1. Prostitute scam
  2. Phone scam
  3. Travel scam
  4. Nigerian postal scam
Let me tell you more about these scams.

1. Prostitute scam -- Prostitutes are straightforward: they place profiles on dating sites to solicit business. Such profiles are usually easily recognized by sleazy user names and steamy self-descriptions. They don't waste time letting you know what they are after.

2. Phone scam -- This is the variation of the old phone scam: the person asks you to call them, and when you do, you get a bill in the mail for hundreds of dollars (1900 number).

3. Travel scam -- The person resides overseas and asks you to help them with travel expenses to visit you.

4. Nigerian postal scam -- The person pretends to be a relative of a diseased government official who asks for your help in a financial transaction.

So, how can you protect yourself from being taken by Internet con artists using online personals to reach their victims?

Here is the simple guidance that will make your use of online dating sites safe and secure.

First, when you view a profile, look out for the things like a sleazy user name, especially if it's a woman: guys cannot stop thinking about sex 24/7 (and it's normal) - but women normally don't do it. Sincere women don't choose user names like "the_sweetest_sin", "ms_right_now" etc.

Second, read what the profile says: people milking others for money will say something vague that can fit anyone.

Third, look at the photos: gorgeous professional photos in combination with vague profile almost always mean trouble. People with beautiful photos receive LOTS of mail, so they become VERY selective and include many requirements in their profiles (especially women).

Basically, any woman who talks about loving sex and experimenting in bed is most likely not for real.

Any man who talks about being a millionaire isn't for real either.

It doesn't mean there are no women who love sex and experimenting in bed or millionaires on the site - they just DO NOT talk about that in their profiles.

And any person who does, is a liar.

Simple.

Another HUGE warning is overseas profiles. Often people would list their location as being local and when you start talking to them, they reveal they are from overseas (Nigeria, Russia, etc).

Such profiles should be treated as potential scams - always.

If the location in the personal profile doesn't match what the person says about him/herself, my advice is to drop it altogether and don't waste your time.

If you decide to proceed, do it for entertainment purposes only and don't get emotionally attached.

What will happen, sooner or later you will get a money request in some form - they need money for a sick relative, they want to visit you and need money for tickets, etc - whatever the reason, there WILL be a money request.

When this happens, you can play along and have some fun, asking for instructions and promising to send them money - just don't actually SEND it.

If you do, there are two variants: they will disappear or ask for MORE money (hey, if you were so stupid to send it once, why not try again!) - and keep asking for more money until you stop sending it.

Don't even HOPE this is for real. Because it's NOT.

You may want to believe it is, but better believe ME: I am a real person and you can ring me and have a chat with me. With those people, you can't.

So, who would you choose to believe: me, who tells you this is a scam - or them, who ask you for money (which you can NEVER recover)?

I work in online dating since 1999 - I KNOW.

Trust me on that.

Long distance + request for money = SCAM.

Forget any sweet stories you've heard in between - and any sweet pictures, too. Most likely, the pics are downloaded from the Net and belong to some model. (Hey, there were even scammers using MY OWN pictures! ;-))

Guys are more vulnerable to this one than girls: I have never heard about a woman who wired thousands of $$$ to some guy to come and visit her - but the Internet is PLASTERED with stories of men sending money to their non-existing female admirers.

How wonderful... this perfect female specimen cannot wait to get hold of your zip and provide you with the greatest pleasure you ever experienced!! OF COURSE she sincerely loves you and is different from any woman you met before (and probably a couple of generations younger than you as well).

C'mon mate: those perfect Playboy-type exemplars dying to try your new sheets exist only in the virtual reality of your correspondence.

They are as real as Santa Claus or Nigerian millions. You know this one: you get a mail from a relative of a deceased top government official who begs your assistance in transferring large sums of money (stolen from the country's people obviously) - and easily promising to give you a few millions if you simply allow them to use your bank account. The people may list themselves as being from Nigeria, or any other African country.

This one is as clear as daylight, so if anyone starts talking about money transfers, honesty and trust, simply BLOCK them.

Remember the formula:

Long distance + request for money = SCAM.

I hope this article will help you protect yourself from dating scams and you will only meet honest, sincere and genuine singles from now on.

Happy hunting! :-))

Thursday

It Only Gets Better After 30


Photo By: shermanlive

It Only Gets Better After 30

By Mimi Tanner, Author of "Calling Men"

The perception of "age" has changed drastically. Forty used to be considered "old," but now, it's anything but old!

In fact, 50 is the new 30, and 60 is the new 40. No, I'm not kidding. If you're in your 20's, then you can enjoy your extended teen years because you're so far from being "old" that it's not even on the horizon.

Now please don't write me and tell me that you're only 43 but you feel "old." You're not old!! If I could slap your hand when you say that, I would! Age is a state of mind in so many ways.

No matter what your age, you can be very alluring and charming. That's a fact. It does not depend on your life circumstances. Charm knows neither age nor disability. Charm just IS. We have all known people who are adored no matter what their age.

I find it staggering that some women write me and say that they're too "old" for love. What???

I've met giddy brides in their '70's so don't tell me "old."

My friend Amy Waterman agrees. She says that love and life get better from age 30 and beyond.

Here are some of her thoughts:

“After 30, Love Gets Better and Better!”
- by Amy Waterman

What's great about being 30 and beyond when it comes to love?

You can afford nicer dates than going to McDonald's.

I still remember my first date. We shared a strawberry milkshake at McDonald's, and I was so starry-eyed with infatuation that anything would have tasted like ambrosia. Fortunately, my dinner dates these days are much healthier and better suited to romance.

You know a bit more about life and love.

One of the scariest things about dating when you're a teenager is starting out from a state of ignorance. We're not born knowing how it all works. As exciting as it feels to kiss a boy for the first time, that heady hormonal rush is tempered by anxiety.

Very few people get through their early dating years without feeling paralyzed by a horrible fear of messing up. That's why it's so nice to have enough experience to be realistic about the whole process: dating can be disappointing, exciting, embarrassing, and exhilarating - sometimes all at the same time!

You no longer put up with crap from men.

By the time you reach your thirties, you've gained a little wisdom when it comes to relationships. You can call things what they are. You value yourself enough to say "no" to a bad situation.

Your relationship has a greater chance of lasting.

Compared with couples who marry as teenagers or in their early twenties, your relationship will stand a greater chance of lasting if you wait to marry until AT LEAST your mid-twenties. This makes sense intuitively as well as statistically. When you marry at an older age, you know yourself better. You know what you can live with. You are both more stable career wise. You've had enough dating experience to build some relationship skills.

You can see what you're getting with him.

When you're dating in your teens and twenties, the energy and ambition of youth makes it difficult to clearly see who your partner will actually turn out to be. The young man who goes to Stanford for a business degree may drop out to flip burgers and play in a band. The local jock may become the paunchy middle manager whose idea of flexing his arm muscles is lifting a beer glass.

Luckily, by the time a man reaches his thirties, his lifestyle choices will give you a good indication of where he sees himself going in life.

You've got more going on in your life than him.

Yes, for me the best part about being 30+ is that life is so much fuller, richer, and more satisfying than ever before. Whether you have a relationship or not, you've created a life that you can be proud of. You don't depend on a man for your sense of self-worth.

Dating is part of your life but not everything. As a result, relationships become something wonderful to be valued when you have them, but not despaired over when you don't.

--Amy Waterman, How to be Irresistible to Men

Thanks so much to Amy Waterman for these insights on love. Please visit her site to find out more about what she has to say.

For more dating tips click here.