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The Risks Privacy Maintain privacy and avoid identity theft or fraud.Preventing Identity Theft Your identity is precious. Viruses & Spyware A basic understanding of computer viruses and spyware.The vast majority of people using dating sites are sincere and honest in the information they provide and in their reasons for joining.However, there are exceptions, and you need to be aware of how to keep yourself - and your bank account and savings - protected while meeting people online.Membership means that the site has to commit to an industry code of practice that includes honest communication with users, protecting their privacy and providing a mechanism for reporting abuse.Inclusion of the ODA's logo on the site indicates membership.Trust your instincts and immediately stop communicating with anyone who makes you feel uncomfortable or apprehensive. You don’t owe the other person anything, no matter how long you’ve been chatting or what’s been suggested. If you’re raped or sexually assaulted on your date, help is available.Never feel embarrassed to report a problem to the dating service. The safest plan is to meet somewhere public and stay somewhere public. Make your own way there and back and don’t feel pressured to go home with your date. The way people interact online isn’t always the same face-to-face. No matter what the circumstances, sexual activity against your will is a crime.

Act with caution and learn more about someone before contacting him or her outside of the dating site.

Creating your online dating profile: protect your identity and personal information Be Anonymous - Choose a username that doesn’t let everyone know who you are.

Don't include your surname or any other identifying information such as your place of work either in your profile or when you first make contact.

Be Responsible and do your own Research - There is a limit to an online dating provider’s ability to check the backgrounds of users and verify the information they provide.

They cannot do a criminal records check on every user.

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