Having been in this business since 1988 I have witnessed first-hand the huge growth of introduction, dating and matchmaking agencies.

Thirty plus years ago joining an agency was seen as a last resort – fast forward to 2019 and our industry is busier than ever, with people seeing it as the most sensible solution to finding a partner.

With such a growing market and more and more people using agencies (whether on-line or off-line), some normally sensible singles lose their head when it comes to affairs of the heart. So here are a few dating security tips:

  1. Never reveal too many personal details about yourself.
  2. Never invite someone you have not met before to your home.
  3. Meet, perhaps, for a coffee at a mutually convenient venue.
  4. Never have too much alcohol.
  5. Dress appropriately – nothing too revealing if you are female, it can give the wrong impression.
  6. If you seem to click with a stranger in cyberspace and they ask you for money after telling you a hard luck story, for example, “I want to see you but I don’t have enough money to travel”; “I’ve been robbed/beaten and my wallet stolen”; “I need urgent surgery” or “my mother/father/sister or other family member have been taken seriously ill and I can’t afford the medical bills”, don’t be taken in. NEVER hand over any money. This is an extremely common con.
  7. Watch out for serial daters. These are usually men (but not always) who use the internet or aps on mobile devices for casual relationships often only wanting sex. You can usually spot them by checking out several different websites and if your date has been active on a few I can generally say he/she is a serial dater!
  8. Lastly use your ‘gut feeling’, if something your date says doesn’t add up beware, it’s probably not true.
  9. If you like your date and you think you might be starting a relationship don’t be afraid to ask questions, where do they work, when was their last relationship? A really good handy tip if you know their name and roughly where they live go to 192.com and you can find out a lot more including the names of other people living in the same house as them!
  10. By following these simple steps (especially if dating online) there should be no problem with safe dating.

If joining an online agency make sure it’s fairly well known as anyone can start a dating site. It could be Jo Blogs from his spare room!

Traditional introduction agencies can offer a high degree of protection. Many check out the identity of applicants before taking them onto their books, so at least you know that ‘John Smith’ is exactly who he says he is. Those agencies which interview prospective members also ensure that the Daniel Craig lookalike you thought you were meeting doesn’t turn out to be Mr Bean! That, together with an independent, experienced judgment as to whether you are in fact potentially compatible, can save a lot of time, effort and heartache.

If joining a traditional Introduction/dating agency make sure they are a member of the Association of British Introduction Agencies. We have been established since 1981 and have a strict Code of Practice. The Association is generally recognised as the authoritative voice of the industry. Its members provide a reputable and ethical service.

Article written by:

Karen Mooney

Sara Eden Introductions

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