7 Tips for Staying Safe on Tinder

Dangers of dating on Tinder

Hectic urban lifestyles have made finding love extra difficult for most people. So, many have turned to dating apps to get a leg up.

Tinder stands out among the countless digital matchmaking services available today, claiming 1.6 billion daily swipes. Its user base has grown at a staggering pace over the years, reaching 75 million in 2023.

Even though finding matches on this popular dating app and similar ones is not without a few risks, don’t let this deter you. With the tips we provide in this blog post, you can easily ward off potential threats and discover someone you like without risking your safety.

The Dangers of Dating on Tinder

Scammers, stalkers, extortionists, and similar criminals are rife on every dating app. Tinder is no different.

But what specific safety threats can you encounter on this platform? Here’s what reports suggest:

Misleading and Fake Profiles

Many people on Tinder lie about their appearance, work, interests, and countless other personal information to win a swipe to the right. As a result of such deceptive practices, you could end up wasting significant time pursuing someone with little in common.

However, things can get more sinister with fake accounts. These will often use fabricated details or stolen identities to scam app users. 

Bots are common, too, and are increasingly difficult to spot. Profiles manned by automated chatbots could spam you with marketing gimmicks or lure you into fraudulent activities.

Financial Scams

Fraudsters often pretend to be in love or feign affection so they can swindle money, for instance, under the pretext of seeking financial help for a medical emergency. Once you send money, they will stop all communications, leaving you with little chance of finding them again.

One of their giveaway signs is that they usually ask for money to be sent through wire transfer, gift cards, or cryptocurrency, as these methods allow them to stay untraceable.

Data Theft

Criminals may resort to phishing attacks, hacking, and similar techniques to steal your identity through Tinder.

For example, they could impersonate the platform and direct you to a spoofed site via a phishing email in a bid to access your login credentials. Once they steal your username and password, they could sign in to your Tinder account and steal your data or dupe other people using your identity.  

Harassment and Sexual Assault

Over the years, some dating site users have also become targets for stalking, physical assault, kidnapping, and murder. Meeting up at isolated locations and sharing transportation can particularly make people vulnerable to such threats.

Over a third of more than 1,200 women who took part in a survey conducted by the Columbia Journalism Institute said that they had been sexually assaulted by their online dating platform date. More than half of these women reported that they had been raped.

Extortion

Scammers could trick users into sharing sensitive photos, videos, and personal information, which they can use for blackmailing and doxxing. Extortion leads to emotional and material consequences, as scammers are too good at threatening their victims.

Victims, on the other hand, sometimes give away all their money in order to prevent any personal details leakage, which can simply be avoided.

Essential Tips for Dating Safely on Tinder

How can you ensure your safety while finding compatible matches on this popular platform?

Here’s what you should know:

1. Watch Out for Red Flags

Certain warning signs could help identify and avoid safety threats when using Tinder’s matchmaking service.

These include:

  • Unclear or overly edited photos

Images that seem unusually flawless and photos that fail to show a clear face are often red flags of fake or bot-based profiles.

  • Bios with limited personal information

Genuine users in search of a compatible partner would typically create detailed bios to make it easier to discover the perfect match.

Anyone who shares little to no personal details likely has ulterior motives.

  • Irregularities or discrepancies

If you notice any inconsistencies in the information your potential date has provided, it is important to take note—there is a high chance they are lying.

  • Offensive messages

Rude, disrespectful, abusive, or indecent remarks are telltale precursors to violent behaviors. 

  • Excuses to avoid meeting in person

Does someone you meet on Tinder seem disinclined to arrange a face-to-face date? They could be attempting to conceal their identity and motives.

  • Too many personal questions

Is your Tinder match overly inquisitive? They might be phishing for information to target you for a scam.

  • Requests for money

Did the person you are chatting with suddenly ask for money? Remember, no serious suitor would seek financial help on a dating site if they are serious about finding love.

2. Verify Information

Run a background check on your potential date

Today, there are a variety of ways to verify the authenticity of potential matches you meet on Tinder.

To begin with, look for users with the blue tick on their dating app profile, which confirms they have gone through Tinder’s photo verification.

You can also check their social media handles—go through their profile bio and activities and find mutual friends or anyone else who could provide a reference.

Searching for them on Nuwber is also important. The people search platform could discover your potential date’s personal and professional information, including contact details, social media profiles, address, criminal records, judgments, and much more.

3. Protect Your Identity

Never be too hasty to share personal information with strangers on any dating service. Focus on general topics, such as your hobbies and interests, during the initial messages. Avoid disclosing your family details, home or work address, and other identifiable data.

Be especially mindful not to reveal your credit card details, social security number, usernames and passwords, compromising photos, and similar confidential information at any point during the conversations.

Use a secondary phone number and email to sign up on Tinder. You can share the same details with your potential date if you are uncomfortable providing your regular contact information.

In addition, avoid connecting your Apple, Google, or Facebook accounts with Tinder. This could prevent platform users from finding you outside the dating app and third parties from tracking your online activity.

4. Safeguard Your Online Dating App Account

Set up a secure password for the safety of your Tinder account. Never share it with others or use it on other platforms. Using two-factor authentication is one more safe option that will protect your Tinder account.

Moreover, avoid logging in to your profile using multiple devices at once. This practice will minimize the risk of compromising your account in case one of the devices is lost, stolen, or hacked.

5. Be Wary of Requests for Money

Did the person you are chatting with on Tinder suddenly ask for money? Requests for financial assistance or investments, primarily via an untraceable method, such as wire transfer, cryptocurrency, or gift cards, are best avoided.

Scammers come up with a lot of situations that might make you feel bad for them, such as a medical emergency or the loss of a loved one. They might even tell you that they want to buy a plane ticket to come visit you. However, transferring money to someone you have only talked to on a dating app is not a smart decision.

6. Take Things Slow

Nurturing relationships takes time. Whether you meet someone you like online or in the real world, it is essential to learn more about them without rushing through the dating process.

Before arranging a date, video chat with your potential match. This could make a world of difference in getting to know them better.

And if you ever feel uncomfortable, don’t hesitate to move on.

7. Ensure a Safe First Date

Meeting with a Tinder match in person

Take adequate safety measures when it is finally time to meet in person.

Set up the date in a popular restaurant or any other public place where plenty of people are around. Keep friends and family informed about your Tinder suitor and where and when you are meeting.

Avoid alcohol, drugs, or anything else that could prevent you from making a sound judgment. And arrange for your own transportation to get back home safely.

In addition, familiarize yourself with the special features Tinder has provided to ensure dating safety. The Noonlight panic button, for instance, allows you to request help if you ever feel unsafe while on a date.

To Conclude

Whether you are looking for a serious relationship or just a hookup, online dating is an excellent option to find matches with a few quick swipes.

Tinder stands out among the countless matchmaking apps available for its high popularity and large user base. However, if you are thinking of trying your luck on it, be extra vigilant for safety threats and take sufficient measures to ensure a secure dating experience.

FAQ

Are online dating apps safe?

Similar to any other online service, matchmaking apps could harbor malicious actors who exploit users.

Therefore, anticipating and avoiding such risks is every user’s responsibility.

Is it okay to share contact details with potential matches?

It is best not to disclose your phone number and other contact information during the first few conversations.

Until you get to know your Tinder match better, limit communication to the app’s messaging tool, which is a safer alternative to sharing personal details.

How long should I wait before setting up a date with someone I have met on Tinder?

It varies between situations and can also depend on the person you are conversing with. Most dating experts advise users of Tinder and other dating platforms to take things slow.

If you feel comfortable after the initial messages, set up a video chat for a virtual meetup. This could help you get a better sense of the person before you arrange an in-person date.

Is it ethical to run a background search on a Tinder match?

Scammers, stalkers, and other malicious actors often disguise themselves as potential suitors on matchmaking websites. Therefore, conducting an extensive background check is necessary for your safety when using an online dating service.

Given the potential risks, it is certainly justifiable as long as you are not overly intrusive.

What should I do if I encounter a scam on Tinder?

Unmatch the relevant person to block them. After that, report them to Tinder. Depending on the severity of the incident, the app will likely carry out an investigation.

If you have lost money to a scam on the platform, take copies of all communications with the perpetrator and lodge a complaint with the local police. You can also inform the FTC on their hotline or website.

Eugene Kirdzei
Eugene Kirdzei

Chief Technical Officer at Nuwber
With nearly two decades of experience in the IT industry, Eugene possesses comprehensive knowledge across his professional field, including in data management, data protection, and information search. Through his writing, he aims to provide valuable insights and practical advice on how to safely explore the online environment and leverage digital tools to enhance people’s lives.