Nearly 59 per cent of people who used online dating services or apps on their mobile devices reported experiencing a security problem, a survey by global leader in cyber security Norton by Symantec has revealed.

Every February, users both single and couples tend to increase their downloads of Valentine’s Day-centric apps romance-themed content, horoscope compatibility tests, greetings and games, among others.

According to the recently released Norton Mobile Survey, dating-based social networking is rapidly becoming the norm in India with about 38 per cent of consumers admitting to having used online dating apps at some point in their lives.

However, these romance-related apps are four to five times more likely to be uninstalled within a month. This offers opportunity to cyber criminals looking to leverage user-interest towards the related offerings.

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While 64 percent women reported experiencing security-related problems, 54 per cent men faced security issues, the survey said.

One should not visit links sent by people that are out of contact for a long time, as scammers can pose as a known member to get people to click on links that usually lead to porn or webcam sites, said the cyber security firm while providing various tips to spot online dating scams.

They may also lead to malicious sites that download malware onto your computer. Scammers can also create fake profiles that are run by programmes called bots, clicking on which may lead to either porn or malware that may take credit card information.

Further, one should create a username and password that has not been used on any other accounts, as the username can be searched and anything tied to that username can be used to locate people on other social or online platforms, the firm said.

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Before choosing an online dating site or app, proper research should be done and only reputable and well-known service or paid service should be used.

One should also check the site’s privacy policy as well as verify how information regarding your account is handled, as some dating sites make profiles public by default, which means that they can be indexed by search engines.