Safety Suggestions

Aligned Signs wants you to get to know you better, including how you interact with others. With that knowledge, we encourage you to go out and apply it to friendships, acquaintances, work interactions, and relationships in general.  In doing so, we suggest that you use your best judgment and healthy caution when connecting with others, both in our online community and out in the person-to-person world.

Below are some friendly points to keep in mind:

BEHIND THE COMPUTER SCREEN:

  • Your Profile
    • Do not put your full name
    • Do not put personal contact information, including phone number and email address
    • Do not share your exact address/location of home or work
    • Do not share financial information
  • When Communicating
    • Turn off your email signature file if you choose to email someone from a personal or work email
    • Take your time and only share personal information when you are ready…if ever
    • Take into consideration identity theft is rampant and a culprit has the ability to falsify a member profile
    • End communications right away if someone
      • Is pressuring you for financial or personal information
      • Is inconsistent about information (age, background, reasons on site, lifestyle choices, type of employment, etc.)
      • Has mood swings and/or anger outburst in correspondence

FACE TO FACE:

Remember, the beauty of online relationships is that you have the choice to build trust gradually and meet face to face when you are ready, if ever.

  • Prior to Meeting in Person:
    • Get person’s full name and do your own research on who you are meeting
    • Request an up to date photo (multiple in various settings is ideal).  If the person is unable to send a photo, question if the individual has something to hide.
    • Communicate via phone.  Consider using Skype or call block or another phone option that would protect your private information until you feel comfortable
  • Meeting in Person
    • Meet at a place you know or have explored previously (a familiar cafe or restaurant is ideal)
    • Choose a venue that will be public and populated during the time of the appointment
    • Tell someone about the appointment. If you are not able to reach someone directly, leave all information on your answering machine/voicemail
      • Include details:
        • Name of person you are meeting
        • Contact information of individual
        • Location
        • Appointment time
        • Likely time of when you will return
    • Bring a charged cell phone, should you need help or to call a friend in an emergency
    • Drive to the location yourself
    • Should you decide to have a change of venue, use your own transportation
    • Do not give out your work or home address, or allow someone to pick you up
    • Keep your personal items (i.e.: purse/pocketbook) with you and in sight
    • Refrain from excessive alcohol consumption.  This will impair your judgment of new contact and your driving ability
    • This is your first face to face encounter—save some fun for the next time and say goodbye to your new friend at an appropriate time
    • Run an errand if feeling apprehensive after the interaction instead of going straight home

Aligned signs does not routinely screen its members. Criminal databases are frequently outdated and we feel screening members will provide a false sense of security. Please follow your best judgment. Discontinue all communication if someone makes you feel uncomfortable or the information given does not match up to previous correspondence.