Potential dangers of online dating - ABC 33/40 - Birmingham News, Weather, Sports

Potential dangers of online dating

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Online dating is becoming more popular than ever. It's a billion-dollar industry, and experts say users should take precautions before revealing detailed information on the Internet.

University of Alabama at Birmingham Professor John Sloan says more cases of crime and fraud are resulting from the cyber meet-ups. Sloan says some of those encounters can leave users out of love and out of cash. That's why he says users should always withhold personal and financial information, such as bank account and social security numbers.

"If they're interested in your occupation, your finances, where you live, those are the indicators that might show that you have money," Sloan says.

He also reminds users that, even though they may intend for "one" person to read what they type, thousands may end up seeing it.

"Whatever you post to the Internet is there forever," Sloan says.

If someone feels they are being victimized or threatened online, they are encouraged to contact police.

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