Netflix's 'Tinder Swindler' shines light on risks of online dating - tips to avoid being scammed

Person tapping on Tinder dating app
Person tapping on Tinder dating app Photo credit James M. O'Neill/, via Imagn Content Services, LLC

The latest Netflix craze is "The Tindler Swindler," a British documentary about a man named Simon Leviev, born Shimon Hayut.

Hayut stole millions of dollars from women all across Europe by duping them on Tinder.

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The documentary trails Hayut, who claims to be the son of the CEO of a diamond company, as he sets his sights on unsuspecting women with promises of a luxurious lifestyle. Eventually, he decieves them into giving him large sums of money via credit cards and loans.

Since the documentary's rise in popularity, the issue of safety across dating apps has been paramount, so Bustle put together a list of tips to help prevent romantics from falling victim to the next "Tinder Swindler."

Here are some best ways to avoid getting duped by a fraud:

They Talk About the Future Immediately
If you just started talking and they’re already acting like you are the love of their life, it's a major red flag. Experts say this is one sign that points to love bombing, which is a term for giving someone an excessive amount of attention to make them feel dependent.

They Respond With Generic Answers
If someone responds with short and concise statements, you could be dealing with a liar. “It's as though they are purposely trying to avoid being caught that they are not local or a real person," says Omar Ruiz, a licensed marriage and family therapist.

They Want to Talk on Another Platform Right Away
According to Ruiz, if someone has good intentions in mind, they will exchange contact information after some time communication on the dating app. However, scammers will immediately try to move the conversation offline so they can swindle you. By continuing the conversation on the app, you can also block or report them if something seems off.

They Keep Canceling On You
Plans change, but if it's frequent, it might be a warning sign. If the person always has an excuse as to why they can't meet up, they likely aren't being upfront with you. “Scammers have a way of canceling dates at the last minute with outrageous excuses,” Susan Trombetti, matchmaker and CEO of Exclusive Matchmaking notes. “Don't fall for this," she warned, adding that even if they have pure intentions, it likely isn't worth your time to pursue a flaky relationship.

Google Raises Some Concerns
One of the first things you do after meeting someone is Google them. However, someone's Google results can tell you a lot about them. If things aren't adding up, don't just brush it off. And be wary if someone uses common last names that makes it hard to look them up.

They Text Back at Werid Times
Unless they work a night shift, if you're talking to someone local to the area, there shouldn't be a reason for them to consistently respond at odd times of the day. If someone keeps replying in the middle of the night, you might be talking to someone in a different time zone.

They Get Too Personal
If you want to get to know someone, you obviously have to talk about yourself and get a little personal, but be sure not to give up things like where you live before you meet them in person and establish a real connection. If the person you're talking to keeps asking for more and prying, it could be a telling sign that they are trying to tap into vulnerabilities that they can exploit.

"The Tinder Swindler" is currently available to stream on Netflix.

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Featured Image Photo Credit: James M. O'Neill/, via Imagn Content Services, LLC