John Leech thinks the situation is new, and dangerous.A local council member in Manchester, in the north of England, Leech this year launched a campaign to make online dating companies commit to keeping their users safer.Whether you want to get away from a bad date, or feel like you’re in a seriously unsafe situation, there are plenty of safety apps on the market to help you date with proper precaution. This is one of the best apps on the market, and it’s free for both i OS and Android phones. Once downloaded, the app has you set up three personal contacts from your phone.If you find yourself in an unsafe situation, you can open the app and send an alert to your pre-selected contacts. It allows users to set a timed activity, like running or walking the dog, and if you don’t deactivate the timer within the allotted time, it will start notifying your contacts that something may be wrong. Then, if the danger gets real, take your thumb off and the police are alerted immediately.When it comes to dating, many of us remember the straightforward, no-nonsense advice we got from our mothers: meet in a public place, let others know where you are going, and nothing good happens after 2 a.m.And while your mother usually knows best, sometimes she forgets that these days, there’s an app for that.
If you don’t respond within five minutes, Kitestring will alert your emergency contacts.Over the past four years, 17 people in the Greater Manchester area have reported being raped after using one of two apps, Grindr and Tinder, according to police statistics obtained by Leech through a freedom of information request.A total of 58 people were victims of online dating-related crimes in those four years, some of them sexual. For context, in 2012 the area had an overall average of 243 sexual assaults and rapes every month.) Many apps offer a page of advice for safe dating.While you might not be able to control someone seeing where you live based on a geotag from a post your friend tagged you in, giving out personal information is completely voluntary.Saying you grew up in California, were the oldest child, and played sports your whole life is one thing.Next time you’re swiping or meeting a match for the first time, follow these five steps to ensure your safety. Yet sometimes we forget just how much you can find out about someone online.