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25+ Red Flags for Online Dating To Be Aware Of

I gathered 25 of my own personal red flags for online dating since I was dating, a few years ago. 

I was using this almost as a mental checklist of issues to stay away from and I hope it will help you as well.


When it comes to dating we would like to know straight away if the person we’re dating is good for us. If we’re compatible or not and if we’re just wasting our time with them. 

Online dating can be tedious and complicated but only if we allow it to be. 

Use the below red flags as guidelines to help you sift through the myriad of potential dates out there, not waste your time and find your perfect partner faster. 

1. Don’t have pictures of themselves 

I understand that some people want to keep a low profile and not let friends and family know they’re on online dating sites. 

However if they’re reluctant to give you a picture, then it is definitely a red flag. 

They are clearly hiding something and not sure you want to be part of any drama or they just are not who they say they are. 

2. Their profile picture is fake. 

There are certain ways you can tell that their profile picture can be fake. Many times you can see it just by looking at it. 

Sometimes they use famous people’s pictures as their own. 

And other times you can just simply do a reverse image search on google and find out the origins of their picture. 

Again, they might just want to keep a low profile, but why try to show as someone they’re not? Why are they actually hiding?

3. They ask for inappropriate pictures straight away 

As a girl on online dating sites I’ve received quite a few requests to send inappropriate pictures straight away. It’s not like I am a beauty or anything and still got quite a few requests. 

And many times it was on my profile that I was looking for something serious. 

But still there were quite a few ‘guys’ who would just ask for inappropriate pictures just for the fun of it. 

These types of people either want to test you, to see if you’re actually a serious person. 

Or they are literally not interested in anything serious and just want a bit of fun. 

It’s your decision whether you want entertain their request, but if you’re looking for something serious, I would suggest you stay away as this is a big red flag when it comes to online dating. 

4. They send you inappropriate and unsolicited pictures

This kind of goes hand in hand with the previous one. 

There are many weirdos online. I wish there would be a pre-screening option, but sadly there isn’t yet. 

All of my friends who are girls have received at one point unsolicited pictures. 

And whilst there are many ways to deal with the people who are sending them. You’re really just wasting your time. 

Better just block them, maybe report them to the website admin, and then you can move on and focus on your search. 

5. They dodge answering certain questions 

If they dodge answering certain questions like: ‘Are you married? Of ‘Do you have children?’  it better to just block them and move on. 

These are the types of people who want to seem righteous that they haven’t lied to you, but they haven’t told you the truth either. 

Omitting the truth is still lying. 

No need to deal with liars online as well. We have enough of those in real life. 

Block them and just move on. 

There’s plenty of fish in the sea. 

6. They ghost you for a while and then try to connect back 

These types of people don’t really like you for who you are. They may have dated someone and if that didn’t work out they suddenly remember that you exist as well. 

They’re just keeping you as an option B. A back-up plan. 

It just means that they’re not that into you and that’s ok. 

If you’re looking for a serious partner, feel free to move on from these people and let them find themselves other plan Bs. 

7. They constantly invite you to their house 

I don’t know why people keep doing this. Does it even work? 

I mean we’ve all seen crazy murder series at one point or another. 

Why would you want to go to their house without meeting them in public first, or having something in common, more than just a profile on a certain dating site? 

It is clearly not safe as you don’t really know them and don’t know if they’re genuine people.

8. They only want to meet up at very inappropriate times

These people have something to hide, usually. 

Either they want to hide their current situation or hide you from their ‘situation’. Maybe a girlfriend, a wife even? 

If you’re uncomfortable with this and you consider it a red flag too, then you know what you need to do.


That’s it! 

Block them and move on. 

9. They are asking for your bank details to ‘send you’ something 

This is clearly a scam. Nobody is just willing to gift you money out of nowhere. 

There are many ways you can protect your bank details so even if you think they’re genuine, don’t use your real bank details. Use a platform like Paypal or Stripe where you just give them your username and they can send whatever they want there. 

This way you’re safe in case they truly want to scam you. 

Otherwise you can just ignore them and focus on other, more interesting, potential dates. 

10. They ask for money 

There are many people who are desperate and would do anything to get some money from others. 

I know people who got scammed in real life by their ‘girlfriend’ that they were living with, nevermind online scamming. 

Even if it’s a small amount of money that they are asking for, it is still dangerous as they might just want to get your bank details and then try to scam you for bigger amounts. 

Stay safe and away from these types of people. 

11. They complain about money 

Another scam related to money is where they don’t ask for money out front, but they complain that they either don’t have any or they are about to pay a massive bill. 

Or maybe after just a few days of talking they have an ‘accident’ or ‘their car breaks down’ or ‘their beloved cat had an injury’ and they need to take it to the vet. 

I mean excuses can be plenty. 

Whilst you are entitled to do with your money as you please, be careful of scammers as the only thing they want is to get money from you.  

Once they see they cannot, they’ll just disappear. 

So don’t give in. 

12. They are trying to find out how much money you make 

There are some people who want to know straight away how much money you make, so they can decide whether to continue talking to you or not. 

They hope that at one point you’ll fall in love with them and maybe share some of that money with them. 

Someone who is truly into you won’t care to know exactly how much you make. 

They might want to know what you do as a job, or as a passion, but they’ll never ask for exact amounts. 

So if anyone is pushing in finding out what your paycheck is… block them immediately. 

13. They ask too many confidential information related questions, like your address and house number.

Again, confidential information, like addresses as well, can be used for various scams. 

Or even to find out where you actually live and maybe pay an ‘unannounced’ visit. 

Stay safe and keep your confidential information to yourself. 

14. They want to know who you live with (parents, brothers. Sisters, cousins etc)

Have you seen the movie Taken with Liam Neeson? 

If Yes, need I say more? 

If No, you need to watch it asap, as although it is a movie, those things happen in real life too. 

Just because you’re talking to someone online, it doesn’t mean that you’re suddenly safe. 

It depends on what information you share that you do stay safe. 

15. They never want to speak over the phone just text 

Unless they have a speech impairment, there is no reason why they should not be able to talk over a phone. 

It is always good to check that they’re a real person and have the voice you’re expecting them to have, and maybe even the accent? 

There are many people catfishing online so take as many precautions as possible. 

16. They don’t want to share their phone number 

I’m not saying that they should do this straight away, but if you’re a few conversations in and they still insist on talking online, it is just because they’re clearly hiding something. 

It just means that they’re not interested in anything serious and you cannot trust anything they ever tell you. 

Stop wasting your time with these types of people and just move on to the next.  

17. Their webcam ‘died’ and cannot have a video call 

First of all, all phones these days have cameras, and many of them front AND back cameras. 

Nevermind that each laptop has a built-in webcam nowadays. 

If they find excuses for that too, a new webcam is quite cheap as well. You can get a brand new one for like $10 – $15. 

It is reasonable to give them a few days to actually get a new one. If after that they keep coming back with excuses, it is best if you cut them loose and move onto someone who is serious about getting to know you and doesn’t want to hide or catfish you. 

18. They are offering to come to your house 

If a stranger that you’ve just met online and have talked to a couple of times offers to come to your house to ‘Netflix and chill’ or to ‘get to know you in person’ or any other excuse, just block them. 

They might be nice people, but it is always better to be safe than sorry. 

You never know who you’re dealing with, especially online. 

19. Their story is too ‘film-like’ to be true and they’re always the victim 

If they have a lot of drama going on in their life and they’re always the victim, trust me, it is not going to get better once you meet in real life. 

They’ll just drag you into their drama and drain your energy with their problems. 

Dating should be about having fun together and doing nice things, not about trying to sort someone else’s life out and you be dragged into useless drama. 

20. They complain a lot about everything 

Negative people tend to drain the energy out of everything. 

They’re usually not fun to be around and they have a problem for every solution. 

Many people complain about everything in their own life just because they need a reason as to why they haven’t done anything with their lives so far. 

21. They want to ‘send you gifts’ at home 

Again, this is along the lines of staying safe and not giving out confidential information to anyone on the internet. 

Websites and payment platforms have very strict rules as to who can install them and they also have a screening process. Even so, scammers get through the cracks. 

But on online dating sites, there is no possible way of screening scammers, so you have to be quite careful. 

22. Their Facebook or Instagram profile says they’re in a relationship, but they’re telling you that they’re not or ‘it’s just complicated’.

If they say they ‘forgot’ to update their profile on Facebook or Instagram, and they don’t change it even after pointing it out to them… it is clear that they’re hiding something. 

Maybe a girlfriend, maybe a wife… or maybe a whole family. 

Do you really want to stick around to find out and be dragged into drama? 

23. Saying things like ‘I love you’, too quickly 

I understand that some people just click on the first date or quite soon after starting dating. 

But if someone you’ve talked to a handful of times online and never actually met tells you that they love you, it is a bit too much. 

They might feel attracted to you, but how can they love you if they don’t even know you that well, regardless of how long or nice the conversations went. 

24. Wants to introduce you to their mother 

Although I’m all for having great relationships with one’s parents, I know I’m super close to mine, wanting to introduce you too soon to their mother can be a red flag. 

They might not be able to tell for themselves what types of people they like or they are compatible with. 

It is a bit concerning if they cannot decide for themselves and they need a chaperone. 

25. Wants to marry you quickly 

Although I married my husband fairly soon, we were dating in real life for a few months. 

If someone wants to get married to you although you’ve only spoken online a few times, run as fast as you can. 

This is a huuge red flag as they are clearly only interested in potentially gaining some visa benefits or green card or something like that and they don’t want to be with you as a person. 

26. They ask many questions about your previous relationships but don’t want to share theirs

This too is a red flag as to why they are interested in your life, but they don’t want to share any of theirs. 

Why are they keeping a distance between themselves and you? 

What are they hiding? 

Although it might be online dating, it should still help you both know each other better and see if you have some common values and life principles. 


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