By Nancy C. Muir

Select your online dating service carefully. Like anything on the internet, dating services can sometimes be used to target people for their personal information. You can take a few extra precautions to help protect yourself.

  • Look for an established, popular site with plenty of members and a philosophy that matches your own.
  • Review the site’s policy regarding your privacy and its procedures for screening members. Make sure you’re comfortable with those policies.
  • Use a service that provides an email system (sometimes called private messaging) that you use for contacting other members. By using the site’s email rather than your own email address, you can
  • Some sites, such Eharmony, offer stronger levels of authenticating members, such as screening to make you more confident that you know with whom you’re interacting.
  • Visit a site such as Consumer Rankings for comparisons of sites. Whether you choose a senior-specific dating site such as DatingForSeniors.com or a general-population site such as PerfectMatch.com, reading reviews about them ahead of time will help you make the best choice.

If you try a site and experience an unpleasant incident involving another member, report it and make sure the service follows through to enforce its policies. If it doesn’t, find another service.