As much as we love Tinder, we have to admit it…it’s filled with bots and scammers waiting for us to fall into their traps.
And falling into somebody’s dangerous trap is very much imaginable if we don’t know how to spot a fake Tinder profile.
And before saying, “Pssht…that will never happen to me.”, keep in mind that catfishing is both frequent and undetectable.
– How many fake dating profiles are out there?
- In this category are included scammers, catfishes, bots, promoters, and even dangerous criminals.
This means that you will come across someone like that, even though I’m sure you already have.
Being aware of the *actual* severity of this problem will motivate Tinder users to take safety precautions more seriously!
– Why do people create fake dating profiles on Tinder?
The reasons vary and could range from petty to hazardous.
- People lying about themselves for validation: HealthyFramework found that 55% of adults (ages 18-54) lie on their dating profiles. They “stretch” the truth in a way that makes them appear more “desirable”. Lies about their appearance and income, for example.
- Financial/romantic scamming: This is the type of scammers that aim for some sort of financial gain (catfishes usually get the victim to fall in love with them and then ask them for money).
- Bots: Bots are mainly malware (not people) that send harmful links on Tinder—if clicked, the victim will get hacked.
- People seeking cheaters to blackmail: A lot of dating site users are cheaters looking for multiple sexual partners: people take this as an opportunity to blackmail them (e.g. asking the cheater for money in exchange for keeping their secret).
- People promoting their product: Because what better place to advertise on than a dating app filled with people who couldn’t care less? Some people create fake accounts to get their products out there!
- Dangerous criminals on dating apps: Dangerous criminals are known to have captured victims on dating platforms. Some catfish their victims and maintain a relationship with them (for quite a long time) until they meet in person and, unfortunately, make their move. It’s always recommended to run a Tinder background check.
These are some of the most common instances of what may potentially come from fake dating accounts—below you’ll learn how to spot fake Tinder profiles.
1. Look for the Tinder Verified Badge—fake profiles usually don’t have it.
It’s not like Tinder is oblivious to the issue of bots on the app, and to fix the issue, the platform gives people the option to get Photo Verified.
- If a person has the blue, verified badge next to their name it means that they are the person in the pictures (they’ve undergone the Tinder verification process).
Check if the user you’re concerned about is verified—if they’re not, then they could be trying to scam you.
2. Fake Tinder profiles don’t have a lot of pictures (not of themselves, at least).
What you need to look out for are this user’s images.
- If they have mostly pictures of sceneries or celebrities, then they’re 100% a catfish and you need to stay away from them.
Since they’re using another person’s images, they also may not have a lot of them (you can expose them by reverse image searching those pictures).
Don’t trust profiles like this even if they have the blue badge as they could’ve bypassed the verification process.
3. Closely analyze their pictures—are they professionally taken and/or pixelated?
On top of catfishes having the galls to claim they’re a popular celebrity, they usually don’t bother picking at least remotely believable pictures.
They end up using images of models that were clearly snapped by a professional in great lightning and even a professional set.
The images are asymmetrical, though, and they might even be pixelated, which is a result of the image being saved and re-uploaded by the catfish.
4. Fake accounts usually have short, unhelpful, or odd bios.
This is what I’m getting at: some deceitful people are so lazy that they don’t put a (good) bio for their dating profile—this actually helps us.
If your Tinder match’s bio is extremely short and vague: e.g. “I am a woman looking for a man.”, or;
If their bio is sexual in nature and contains a link: e.g. “Are you looking for a hot, steamy, unforgettable night? Add me on- ->[suspicious link]”, then you could be dealing with a fake profile.
Don’t trust them and do not click on the link as it’s a virus waiting to infiltrate your PC/phone.
5. Their account information isn’t filled out (e.g. where they live, work, etc.)!
Liars on dating apps avoid providing information that can be easily debunked (if they say they work somewhere, we can easily verify that information).
So study their account to see if key information is missing—their school, job, the city they live in, and a consistent biography.
6. Scammers ask you for money right from the get-go.
It’s not normal for a person you just met on a dating site to ask you for money, and this is how you can spot a scammer!
- They’ll attempt to make you fall in love with them, promise you they’ll return the money, or tell you they’re in dire need of financial aid.
Do not give your credit card information or raw money to Tinder users who ask for them—they’re a fake person operating a financial scam.
7. People or bots operating fake accounts start speaking sexually very early on.
They’re the ones with an agenda; if your Tinder match is very eager, very early on to start sexting, then they might be trying to scam you.
They say something like: “Do you want to see my hot pics? Here’s my phone number [123-456-7890]”.
A lot of people are on Tinder to either find friends with benefits or affair partners, so this type of scam usually ends up working.
8. You try and try to have a meaningful conversation with them, but their answers don’t make sense.
This means you’re dealing with a bot, not a real person.
- At first, it sounds like you’re talking to a real person, but later on, you start noticing their uncanny behavior.
For example, you try asking what their hobbies are, and they reply with something like, “Haha, that’s funny! By the way, I don’t use Tinder a lot, so add me here [another suspicious link].”
Their replies are weird and unrelated to what you were talking about.
9. Their replies consist of too many typos and emojis.
Bot alert! Too many typos and flirty emojis are signs that the person you’re talking to on Tinder is fake.
Not the grammatical mistakes from someone who’s a foreigner or the occasional typos (it happens to everybody), but something like:
“Hey, sweaty!😍❤️U r vry bwtiful and srxy. You wan t o see my hot pixs? Click her- – >[virus links]🔥.”
Technology has come quite far, but it seems like it hasn’t come far enough for scammer bots to replicate perfect human speech.
10. Quick replies are a sign of automated messages.
See if the person you’re talking to responds at, literally, the speed of light: this means that the message is either automated or copy & pasted.
This person is a fake and you shouldn’t accept anything from them or give out sensitive information (such as your name, address, or credit card number).
11. They casually send links (or might have them on their profile).
Everyone in the online world knows how frowned upon links are because they usually contain malware (getting hacked because of them is quite common).
If this “person” has links on their bio or sends you any sort of links, don’t click on them: remove them and report their account to Tinder.
That’s a fake profile.
12. Catfishes pressure their victims to give out personal details (first/last name, phone number, email address, etc.).
Spotting a fake Tinder profile is easy if the first thing they do is pressure you into giving up valuable, personal information.
- If online strangers ask for your name, email, address, phone number, and bank details do NOT tell them anything.
They might also suggest that you two speak on other social media platforms—report them so no one else falls prey.
13. They are very eager to meet in person with you.
It’s normal for people to want to physically meet the people they’ve been talking to on dating sites, but not right away.
- If a person pressures you into going out on a date, do not accept it—they could be a part of a criminal organization.
There have been cases of people meeting up with such people and getting robbed, hurt, or murdered as a result.
Always stay safe and don’t take such a big step without confirming the identity of the person (this can be done with people-investigating sites).
14. The “perfect” person is a sign of a fake Tinder account.
Catfishes usually steal a “perfect” person’s identity in order to allure their victims—someone who’s a 10/10 in looks, personality, and life.
- For example, if you’re talking to a full-time model who also happens to be a doctor and has enough time to go out partying every day, then something isn’t adding up.
Although it’s possible to be matched with a person that interesting, if they match all the other signs in this list, then their profile is false.
You can spot this type of liar by staying alert for inconsistencies (e.g. if they tell you they’re a scientist one time and a professional soccer player the other).
– How do you prevent getting involved with a fake profile on Tinder?
Some professional scammers are so good at what they do that there’s absolutely no way to tell if they’re legit or not—in a behavioral sense.
In a technical sense, however, we are able to uncover their true identity.
Bots are easy to catch, it’s the dangerous people that pose a real threat.
- On the surface, they might sound like a completely normal person with an actual identity—they might even trick us into getting into a relationship with them and meeting up.
Search their pictures on Google, Bing, or reverse image search apps to see if someone is catfishing as another person.
- If they are catfishing, then the results will contain the true identity of the person in the photos.
This kind of search can be done for free and will save you from dangerous individuals.
3. If you think someone is using fake pictures, ask them to send a candid one.
If you met someone on Tinder and you two decided to talk on social media platforms (Snapchat, let’s say), then ask them to send you a spontaneous Snap doing something random.
If they’re using somebody else’s image for their goals, they won’t be able to send you a momentary picture—the perfect way to outwit a catfish!
4. Search their first and last name on multiple search engines for the best results.
You can do this on Google, Bing, Yahoo, Yandex, Firefox, and other search engines that you trust will help.
Simply put their first and last name on the search bar and see if their images and social media profiles match their words.
- You can do this on social media platforms as well—if an entirely different person comes up or no one at all, then that Tinder user is a phony.
– Can a verified Tinder profile be fake? Is it possible to sidestep the verification system?
Yes and yes, unfortunately. A Tinder profile can be false even though it has a verification badge.
The person could’ve used their Photoshop skills to achieve this by altering somebody else’s pictures to fool the system;
They also could have uploaded their actual photo, completed the camera test, and then replaced those pictures with different ones once their profile was up.
Although dating apps checking users’ backgrounds is an excellent idea, it’s not that difficult to work around a flawed procedure.
Tinder scammers are getting out of hand.
There are so many bots/catfishes on dating platforms, Tinder especially—some might be harmless, but let’s not get too comfortable.
Never give out your personal information online or click on links from anybody without knowing them well.
Your data may be at risk and you could be unintentionally putting yourself in danger.
Stay safe while browsing!