How-to: Spot a Catfish
What is a Catfish?
A Catfish is someone, or a group of people, that pretend to be someone else. A Catfish will use pictures of someone else, usually someone that they know and create a whole mixture of social media accounts for this new person.
Jobs they often seem to have: Singers, actors, models or other very busy jobs where looks are often involved.
The phrases they use the most: "My job makes me way to busy so I can't hang out", "I don't have a camera/webcam/phone" or "I don't have the money to get to you'
Talk to them
Make sure to have conversations with them. Talk to them about things that are on their profiles to learn more details but you can also learn more about who the person is.
Talking to them about what is on their profiles is really important because what they write is not always the truth from who they are behind the screen so they will forget about who they are on screen and let the real them slide by accident.
Ask for pictures & search those pictures online!
Ask them for pictures.. This step is incredibly important because they will pick pictures from various time frames and from different events, of which they did not attend.
Some pictures will seem to not cohere with what they are saying. From a personal experience, I have received pictures from someone that there was a specific tattoo under the left eye. A few days later, i received one where the tattoo had magically disappeared. After confronting the person that this made no sense, he had revealed himself to not be the real person.
At that same time, I was reverse searching the pictures on google to be able to see who it really was and to warn the person that someone was stealing their pictures to find people online.
Here is how you reverse search pictures:
- Go into images.google.com
- Click on the camera icon that is present in the search bar
- You will either enter the image URL or the image folder (you must save the picture onto your computer to be able to do the image folder)
- If there is a result, it will give it to you in website form or maybe in image form.
- You can then click the website to see what it is
Ask to video chat or to snapchat!
Video chatting or Snapchatting is 2 ways to see the person by it being the real person. When sending a snapchat, it cannot be uploaded. It is a picture of the person and it is live. You will see exactly what the person looks like at the moment that they are sending you pictures.
For Snapchat, the picture deletes itself after 10 seconds, at most, and you will see if someone replays you picture/video and if someone screenshots your picture.
Many different platforms exist when it comes to video chatting, Skype, MSN and FaceTime are the most popular ones at this moment.
Try to meet in person & set limits
Ask if the person is able to meet in their earliest conveniences. This also means to ignore those who live far from you because then it is harder to be able to meet in person certainly if they or you have to take a plane. A few hours away is okay if both are okay with the travelling.
Set limits of when each can cancel on each other.. I've heard of situations where people get cancelled on within 15-20 minutes before the meet up/date is suppose to happen. Make it so that it is a few hours before hand or even the day prior unless it is for big emergencies. Someone knows when they are to work and generally work doesn't just pop up.
Have you ever tried online dating?
Have you ever been catfished?
Where can you reach me?