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Check Out Who's Behind that Dating Profile

Published Date: Dec. 22, 2010
by: Timothy McClanahan

The firestorm of controversy surrounding the leaked diplomatic cables from Wikileaks has inspired a great deal of scrutiny into the private life of Wikileaks cofounder Julian Assange. Assange purportedly set up an OkCupid online dating profile in 2006 under the name Harry Harrison.

Harry Harrison is the name of the well-known classic science fiction author who wrote the Stainless Steel Rat novels, about a spy who uses his powers for good, which seems an apt choice for Assange, whose profile shows him to consider himself to be an activist for the forces of good.

The profile's description "often pig headed activist intellectual seeks siren for love affair, children and occasional criminal conspiracy" certainly seems like the kind of thing someone like Assange would write.

While you're unlikely to be exchanging emails or phone numbers with Julian Assange when you use an online dating site, you should certainly keep in mind that the name that is being used to communicate with you over the Internet is quite possibly not a real name. Whether they're masking their identity online to protect their privacy for professional or legal reasons, it's up to you to make sure you know who you're really dealing with online. Just as there are services to help you find a match online, there are also tools to help you identify who you're dealing with online, such as background check sites.

A background check can be run very simply, starting with just a name, phone number, or home or email address. Once you have just one of those pieces of information, you have all you need to find out if you're dealing with a person or a persona.

Before you get too carried away, make sure you check the background of the exciting "Robin Hood" soul mate you've been exchanging plans with, and confirm they're the rebel they claim to be, rather than the criminal they might be.

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