Online Dating Website Safety Advice
We are often asked whether online dating is a safe way to meet people. Whenever you meet a stranger for the first time, you will naturally be aware that you need to be mindful of your own safety. Meeting people through Muddy Matches is no different but, unlike meeting people in a pub or nightclub, this gives you the opportunity to anonymously talk to people before meeting them, ask any questions you might have and plan a safe place to meet up.
Our messaging system is an anonymous and safe place to chat; no-one will know your real email address or personal details as long as you have ensured that they do not feature in your profile and that you do not publish them in a message to someone. We, in turn, take measures to try and protect you such as vetting all profile material before it is published to check that our members have not accidentally entered any of their personal details. Likewise, photos will not be published until a member of our admin team has approved them.
Ultimately, you are responsible for your own safety but this will not be a problem if you follow the following advice:
Anonymous Messaging on Our Countryside Dating Website
It is relatively quick and easy to meet people online and this can be great fun, but please take care to follow these simple safety tips:
- Make the most of our anonymous messaging system to gradually learn more about another member
- Don't give out personal details (phone number, email address, home address, where you work etc.) in your profile or initial messages
- Tell the truth - if you are serious about meeting new people, don't lie in your profile or messages and don't use a fake photograph
- There is a certain freedom to anonymous messaging but make sure you only say things you would feel comfortable saying if you met face-to-face (that is the end goal after all)
- Follow your instincts and stop all correspondence it you think someone is:
- Being dishonest with you
- Trying to pressurise you into meeting up or swapping personal details
- Ignoring your questions
- Making claims that seem extraordinary, or contradictory to what you already know about them (look back through your correspondence to check)
- If another member is making you feel uncomfortable, stop contacting them! You can also ‘block' them to stop them contacting you again. Make sure you tell us if you think they are abusing the service (you can ‘Report a concern' from one of their messages or on their profile, or you can write to us at email@example.com)
- Don't get caught out - always be aware and protect yourself against fraud - never ever send money to someone you've never met.
- Always behave responsibly and use your common sense!
Swapping Contact Details
If, with time, you learn more about another member and decide to meet up with them, you may need to share some contact information with them. We advise using a free email account (such as Hotmail, Yahoo or Gmail) if you want to email outside of Muddy Matches, or to telephone using a mobile phone number that you can easily change. Remember, when telephoning you can always block your number from appearing in their Caller ID if you want.
Meeting Up with Your Muddy Date
When it gets to the point that you want to meet face-to-face, make sure you follow these simple tips:
- Pick a public place that you know well
- If you don't already know the place, go in advance to suss it out - make sure that it will be busy with general public, and you won't end up on your own. Don't be shy about ringing the venue to ask about how busy they will be
- Do not arrange to be picked up or taken home - make your own travel arrangements
- Take a mobile phone and make sure it is fully charged, working and has enough credit to make calls
- Tell a trusted friend where you are going, who you are meeting and what time you expect to get back. Call them to tell them you're ok when you arrive and when you get home safely
- Have a contingency plan in case you want to get away
- If it's a date, always use your common sense and go with your feelings, don't worry about seeming overly cautious, anyone worth dating will understand. Similarly, always keep an eye on your own drink. Always stay in control - don't worry about being polite if you are asked to do something you don't want to do - say no and be forceful with your statement.
Remember, when you meet someone for the first time they are still a stranger but just follow our advice, use your common sense and trust your instincts.
Reporting Another Member
It's really important to us that Muddy Matches is a safe place for honest people. If you suspect that someone is abusing the system in any way, TELL US! No harm can be done by letting us know and that person won't know that you have said anything. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org