Being ‘catfished’ is where you are talking to someone online who is pretending to be someone else. We will refer to these people as fake on this help guide.
HOW TO SPOT A FAKE PERSON ONLINE…
The internet can be a very good and useful place. But sometimes, people may be talking to others on a fake profile. This involves fake pictures and names.
Various things make people pretend to be somebody else online. It is usually because they are trying to hide who they are, or they might have issues with their self-esteem and confidence.
TIPS TO SPOT A FAKE PERSON ONLINE
DO A REVERSE IMAGE GOOGLE SEARCH
If you right click on their image, copy the URL, and paste it into the search box at www.images.google.com. Google will then search for other places on the internet that have this image.
If you are talking on an app like Grindr or Tinder, you can download an app called Veracity to do this.
If you Google the name they are using, you may be able to find the real profile it belongs to.
If the person makes spelling and grammar mistakes continuously, this could be an indicator that they are fake.
If your new online friend is asking you for money, then this could be an indicator that they are fake as they may be trying to scam you.
CHECK THEIR CHECK-INS
People usually check-in or get checked-in by their family and friends. If they are lacking check-ins online, then they may be fake.
CHECK THEIR POSTS
Everyone gets a post from someone they know such as a ‘Happy Birthday’, or being tagged in a photo. If they don’t have anything like this, then they may be fake.
THERE ARE PROBLEMS WITH THE STORY THEY TELL
When people are lying, they often make mistakes in what they are telling you. If this is happening, then they might be fake.
SKYPE / FACETIME THEM
If they refuse to do this, then this is an indicator that they might not be who they say they are.
DO NOT GIVE YOUR PERSONAL DETAILS OUT
If you give them your phone number or address, this can put you in danger.
>It is important to remember that if you are thinking that someone is fake who you are talking to online, then you are probably right. If you are going to meet them and still think they are fake, then take the following advice:
Make sure you meet them in a busy public place e.g. cafe, restaurant, shopping mall.
Meet them in the daytime.
Do not go without telling a trusted adult first.
WHAT TO DO IF YOU HAVE ACCUSED THEM OF BEING FAKE
If it is true, then you should block and report them.