Those like me who spend a lot of time on the Tinder application have inevitably been confronted with the problem of fake profiles that abound on the application. It was a bit easier when Tinder became paid (and yes we can no longer like infinitely) but the phenomenon has amplified again in recent weeks.
However, there is a pattern common to each fake Tinder profile , which are moreover most likely bots created by the same person (or a group of people). The purpose of this article is to help you recognize them so you don’t get fooled.
Why do some people use a fake Tinder profile?
People who hide behind a fake Tinder profile can have several purposes:
- Make you sing
- Make you spend money on their services (naughty webcams for example)
- Have you download applications to your smartphone (potentially malicious or unwittingly sending SMS to a premium rate number)
To achieve this, they create attractive profiles, like all the profiles of men who pass by and patiently wait for a fish to bite the hook. I say they but in fact they are robots that do all of this automatically.
Obviously, I strongly advise against clicking on a link that could be sent to you on any online seduction application. It is often a scam.
How a fake profile tried to extort $3,000 from an acquaintance
You’re probably telling yourself that it takes a little one-armed to get fooled by a scam like this, and yet it happens every day. I’m going to tell you the story that happened to an acquaintance after he flirted a little too much with a fake profile on a well-known dating site.
He is in his thirties, far from being stupid, graduated from a major business school. However, someone tried to extort $3,000 from him. Here is the very summarized story. Let’s call him Johan. Like almost every night, Johan connects to his favorite dating site.
A gorgeous brunette caught his eye and he starts a conversation. Very quickly, they find common points and Johan hangs on. They talk for a good part of the evening until the girl begins to offer him a cam shot. Johan thinks it can be fun, he’s never tried.
She gives him her skype, she begins to undress, too … She starts to fiddle with and suddenly him too. At the end of 5 minutes, she cuts Skype and does not give any more news.
A little surprised, Johan wonders what he did wrong … A few minutes later, he receives a message asking him to pay 3000 if he does not want his video (where he appears naked fiddling with ) is published on the internet.
He has 24 hours to run, otherwise the video will be uploaded and sent to all of his contacts.
And yes, with skype, we can record the video stream very easily… Big cold sweat, Johan does not know what to do and with a big rise in pressure.
He will finally file a complaint with the police station for attempted fraud and blackmail and will get away with a great fear (and always a little anguish since a video of him is lying around somewhere …).
In short, you will understand, when you practice online dating, you have to be vigilant!
What are the types of fake profile?
Typically, you can categorize all profiles that are not the person they claim to be into several different categories.
Of all the fake Tinder profiles, bots are the most common. A Tinder bot is a computer program used to send you a message on Tinder trying to trick you into thinking they’re a real person.
Most of the time, they will automatically send a few messages followed by a dangerous link. Sometimes they’ll try to be a little smarter, using predicted responses based on keywords you’ve used in your posts, to replicate a back and forth conversation. Bots may be the most common, but they’re also by far the easiest to spot.
Fake profile controlled by man with diary
This one will be much harder to discern as there will be an actual human controlling the messages. It will be someone who tries to push a certain program, whether it is a service, product, or scam.
What are Tinder scammers looking for?
One difficulty that honest users have in spotting Tinder scammers is that there isn’t a single common goal for scammers and spammers. However, there are a few basic categories of the scammer on Tinder.
In general, bots and crooks look for different things depending on their victims:
- Financial gain: It can be as direct as taking money from your account, or as indirect as using your credit card or social security information to defraud you, open accounts on your behalf.
- Malicious software or ads: If a user (or more likely a bot) sends you links online, it’s likely they’re trying to get you to click something to load ads and other unwanted content. At best, it’s a way for these users to get quick feedback on who clicks on links with ads. At worst, these links may ask for your personal information, download content to your phone, etc.
- Emotional Damage: This one might sound weird, but some users who create fake accounts do so by inflicting some kind of emotional damage. This is often a person who has been hurt in their relationships and decides to “get revenge” on the sex they perceive to have harmed them. Others are more random, just wanting to hurt other people. It doesn’t happen too often, but it’s basically a form of emotional blackmail.
There are other things to watch out for on Tinder, but overall, most fake online accounts will fall into one of these three categories. However, this does not in any way mean that you should avoid using Tinder.Scams and malware are part of the everyday life of a 21st century tech user. And while bullying and emotional damage are largely social and dating risks, the same type of threat can occur on Facebook or Instagram.
How to recognize a fake Tinder profile?
You may not have noticed it, but all fake Tinder profiles present on the app are “made” in the same way.
- They all have exactly three or four photos
- The photos are alluring
- They always have an American or non-French sounding first name.
- They indicate their Facebook or Instagram in their description (while the Instagram can be directly linked to the Tinder account)
- They always start with the same message (containing a link).
What are the signs that the profile is real?
Recognizing a fake profile is not always easy. Their techniques have evolved in recent times and they even now have descriptions written in perfect French. However, here are some signs that a profile is real. If a profile meets at least one of the points listed below, then it is not a fake Tinder profile.
- You have common interests
- She linked her Instagram to her Tinder account
- She has less than 3 or more than 4 photos (be careful, all profiles with 3 or 4 photos are not fakes)
- The current job or Institution field is filled in
Here is an example of a real profile, a common interest and an informed job:
Conversely, here is for example a fake Tinder profile. I still blurred her eyes because the poor girl may not have asked that her photos be used by bots on Tinder. We easily recognize the pattern, three photos, rather alluring, an English name (although many French wear it) …
Once the match is obtained, you will receive a message asking you to click on a link. I have never clicked on it (and I strongly advise against doing so) but either it’s a cam shot that will ask you to pay something, or it will install a malicious application on your smartphone, or even, we will try to blackmail you, as I explained to you above.
Common scams on Tinder
There are a number of common scams that bad actors try to perform on Tinder. Here are a few :
The verification code scam
This scam is easy to spot. The bot chats with you for a bit, then tells you that “for their own safety” they want you to verify your Tinder account. This is not an impossible request, as you can verify your Tinder account if you are a celebrity or a public figure by sending an email .
However, regular Tinder users can’t verify their accounts, and even if they could, this scammer doesn’t want you to. Instead, they give you a link that looks like Tinder, but actually takes you to their phishing site where they get your personal information, maybe even your credit card number.
Fortunately, the scam is obvious. Anyone who asks you to verify your Tinder account is trying to rip you off.
The link scam
It is also easy to spot. The linker wants you to email them, or go to their personal page or website. It doesn’t matter what they say.
They just want you to click on their virus or malware loaded link. Obviously, don’t do that. No one on Tinder for a legitimate reason will ever send you to a link.
The blackmail scam
This one is much trickier. The blackmailer is never a bot, he’s always a person. Because these crooks are trying to build a real relationship with you. They want you to trust them and see them as a potential romantic partner.
To that end, they will spend days chatting with you and making a connection. Their goal, however, is not to have a relationship. It is to make you do or say something incriminating. Their favorite target is married people who are on Tinder looking for something next to their relationship. But anyone can be the subject of the scam. Married people are only the easiest targets.
They obtain compromising screenshots of the conversation, or solicit sexually explicit photographs, and then threaten to make those photos public or contact their victim’s wife, husband or partner with the screenshots, unless they are remunerated.
There are several different defenses against this scam. The obvious is not to do or say anything incriminating on Tinder. Personally, I am a single man with a very high tolerance for embarrassment; if a scammer wants to post my inappropriate selfies on Facebook, I don’t care.
Other people might have a different point of view. In general, don’t send anything to a Tinder match that you wouldn’t post on your own Facebook page. Usually, the blackmailer will not be willing to meet with you in person. So if you’ve started seeing someone in the real world, you’re less susceptible to this particular scam – but not immune.
The scam instead
This one is both smart and mean. The scammer instead is someone who has been hired to promote a bar, club, restaurant, or other public place. They fish dozens or hundreds of contacts at the same time and chat with each of them in a charming way.
Then they ask for a face-to-face meeting. The scam victim is elated, of course, and agrees to come to Bar XYZ at 9 p.m. Tuesday, or whatever – only to find out when they arrive that there is an absolute crowd of people, all or a lot of people. them were attracted to the crook.
The theft scam takes things to another level. It’s a variation of the scam instead – the blackmailer charms the victim and requests a date. When the victim arrives at the scene, she finds a gang of thugs in her partner’s place and is robbed (if she is lucky).
It’s relatively easy to defend. Don’t meet anywhere other than a public place with lots of people around. A warning sign will be someone who wants to meet you after a suspicious interaction and insists it be in their hotel room or in a dark parking lot somewhere.
Now that you know how to recognize a fake Tinder profile every time, here are some common sense recommendations:
- Fake profiles can hide everywhere, always be on your guard
- Do not click Never on a link that was sent to you via a dating site, especially early conversation
- Never agree to a cam shot until you’ve genuinely met the person in front of you (and more generally don’t do it, it’s no use, it’s always more interesting and fun to spend the night directly with its target 😉)