But with the proliferation of social networking, an entirely new environment for criminal and terrorist activity has emerged.
Criminals have new avenues to abuse and harass their victims, children are at risk of online predators, and the financial security of individuals and businesses is threatened.
If your date’s interests match yours exactly, he or she could me mirroring your profile to make you feel like they are ‘the one.’Often women get excited when they first start talking to someone online.
Remember that you’re a member of a dating site, he’s a member of a dating site, and chances are everyone is dating multiple people.
I can’t stress enough the importance of taking your time in getting to know someone.
While looking for love online, take some additional steps such as seeing if you have Facebook friends in common, downloading your date’s photos into Google Image reverse search at If someone’s photos seem to good to be true and your date looks like a model or stock photo, it would be good to check their social networking sites such as Facebook or Instagram to see if they match up.
If your date refuses to go on a Skype or video date, perhaps they are hiding something.
The Santa Monica Daily Press called it “a must for this generation of singles, both male and female, who are into cyber-dating" Spira first termed the phrase Social Media Anxiety Disorder in 2012, where she provided five signs of SMAD in an article on Huffington Post, “Do You Suffer from Social Media Anxiety Disorder." Other media outlets continue to cite her on social media anxiety issues including Digital Journal, Elite Daily, and Digital Trends.
As the number of internet users in the world has quadrupled over a decade – from 500 million in 2001 to over 2 billion in 2010 – society has become more connected than ever.
Since the nature of the internet is so anonymous, it is easy for people to misrepresent themselves and manipulate or trick other users.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation has seen a significant increase in sextortion activity (the coercion of victims into providing sexually explicit images/videos of themselves) against children who use the Internet. Additionally, law enforcement is increasingly confronted with cyberbullying complaints due to the prevalence of technology used by children and new laws addressing these types of incidents.
Please select a page from the box at the right, under the “Internet Safety” heading to see more.
Dating safely online and offline should always be a priority.
Julie Spira is an author and media personality on the subjects of online dating, social media, mobile dating, and netiquette.