Recently, a Rockford man met a woman online and they set up a date. He went to meet her and instead got met with a gun in his face and had his car stolen.

How to Avoid the Very Serious Dangers of Online Dating

The story above is true, according to He arranged the meeting through 'Backpage', a very sketchy looking dating website.

The new trend for dating seems to be to hop online to meet people. Whatever happened to just walking up to someone and introducing yourself?

These days it's all about the cyber world. Match, E-harmony, Tinder, Plenty of Fish just to name a few. Sounds easy enough, right? Swipe left or right and poof, you have a date. Thankfully I met my girlfriend through mutual friends. She did do some online dating before she met me though, and these were her rules:

  • Always Facebook stalk people to make sure they are real. If they don't have a Facebook, definitely don't meet up with them. They probably aren't real.
  • If you have mutual friends with this person, check them out. Find out if your friends think this person is good for you or not.
  • Have at least one phone conversation with them before you decide to go out with them. People can hide a lot through texting, but not so much on the phone.
  • Check their record HERE. You can weed out most of the bad ones this way.
  • If you do decide to meet them, do it in a public place during the day when it's light outside. A restaurant or coffee house would be good.
  • Stay alert during the whole date. Pay attention to your drink if you have one to make sure they don't slip something in it.
  • Bring mase and have it somewhere that you can easily reach it.
  • Make sure you tell at least one person where you are going and send them a picture of the person you are meeting along with as much info you can about the person. Name, age, phone number, etc.
  • DO NOT let them come to your house, even if it's just to pick you up.
  • DO NOT ride in the car with them.
  • DO NOT go anywhere alone with them.

If at any point you feel scared or uncomfortable, end the date. Make sure you stay in the public place where you are until the person leaves so they can't follow you. Call the cops if you need to. They can always escort you home. Please don't take any chances. Stay safe.

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