Dating Safety

Ello.ie is a great way to meet people to potentially date and so many people are now meeting their partners through online dating.

Although Ello.ie it is a great resource that is available at your fingertips, it’s also important to use your best judgment and put your safety first, whether you are exchanging initial messages or meeting in person. Understandably, you cannot control the actions of others, there are things you can do to help you stay safe during your Ello.ie experience so we have compiled these online dating safety tips should help you out enormously in that regard.

YOUR ONLINE SAFETY:

  • Stay on the app:
    • What we mean by that is that you should keep all your conversations on Ello.ie App while you are getting to know your prince charming or that irresistible woman. Those with bad intentions will try to take this to a whole new level by asking you for your KIK, Snapchat, Phone Number, Email address and so on. Stop… think before you act.
  • Don’t disclose your personal information:
    • Do not share your private and personal stuff such as your work address, street you live at, where you’re about to go, if you have a gym that you routinely visit (although it’s a very Irish thing to get into unnecessary details) but remember you are just getting to know this person, even if you think you have known them for a while just ask yourself, do you trust this person? Do you really know this person to disclosed such personal and private details about yourself? If you are a parent, limit your disclosure of information to the number of children by keeping as generic as possible. Avoid sharing fine details such as your children’s names, where they go to school, or matching their ages or genders with their names. Stop… think before you act.
  • Do not involve money into it:
    • We are not schooling you on how to spend your money, however when it comes to dating its all too common for scammers to act like needy victims so they can con you out of your hard earned cash. Whether you are being asked to buy call credit or to send money using western union for helping with the rent or bills, just use your own judgement at best, never share information that could be used to access your financial accounts. As a matter of fact If a user asks you for money, report it to us immediately. Stop… think before you act.
  • Be extra careful when dealing with long distance relationships:
    • Look out for fraudsters who claim to be from Ireland but aren’t present in the country, you will need to be extra cautious, especially if they ask for financial help to help with whatever (they always have some new creative reason each time). Also be wary of anyone who will not meet in person or talk on a phone/video call after chatting a decent amount of time, they may not be who they claim to be, HINT: Catfish! Another huge red flag is when someone is avoiding your questions or pushing for a serious relationship without meeting or getting to know you first. Stop… think before you act.
  • Report all weird and offensive behavior:
    • You know when someone’s taken things a bit too far by crossing the line and when they do, we want to know about it. Block and report anyone that violates our terms. Here are some examples of violations:
      • Requesting money, (including donations);
      • Underage users;
      • Bullying, harassment, threats, offensive and distressing messages;
      • Acting inappropriate showing disrespectful or harmful behavior during or after meeting in person;
      • Fraudulent profiles (catfish individuals);
      • Spam or solicitation including links to commercial websites or attempts to sell products or services including gigs;

      Rest assured, you can report your concerns about suspicious behavior to us here. If you would like to report something that happened offline, please click here. For more information, check out our User Guidelines.

  • How you can protect your account:
    • If you logged in using Facebook then be sure to pick a strong password for your Facebook account, always be careful when logging into your account from a public or shared computer. Never use someone else’s phone to log into your Ello.ie account and never share your Ello.ie pin you receive for login into your account.  Ello.ie will never send you an email asking for your username and password information so if you receive an email asking for account information, report it to us immediately through our Contact Us page.

WHEN MEETING IN PERSON:

  • Stay calm, don’t rush and panic:
    • We cannot stress this one enough, let us say it loud and clear, everyone should take their time and get to know the other person before agreeing to meet face to face. Don’t be afraid of ghosting or being shy to ask questions they are your only chance to see early signs including red flags and deal-breakers. A few phone calls are advised but video calls are highly recommended to avoid any appearance disappointment later on before you finally meet and say Ello!
  • Arrange public meeting:
    • This is pretty obvious but we would like to put it there for the sake of your safety, all first, second and even third meetup (if you’re still not confident enough to meet alone) should be in a well populated area like city centre or your nearest shopping centre, town etc. You should never go or invite someone to your place (home) that you haven’t met and trust. If they pressure you to meet at their place where there will be just the two of you or they are very persistent about coming to your place, in our opinion that spells danger, considering your own personal safety, you should never agree to that sort of private meet up in your early days of dating someone new, so end the date and move on.
  • Tell family and friends about your plans:
    • We advise you to tell your family member that you’re close to, including your best friends what your plans are and where exactly you are planning to meet up. Have your mobile phone fully charged and carry that with you at all time (although we do not recommend using it excessively after yoou meet your date, as you should try and focus on getting to know them to see if there is a real chemistry between you two.
  • Your transport:
    • Don’t just think about getting yourself to the venue but also plan your trip back to your place in advance, even if you are driving yourself, its doesn’t hurt to have a back plan, just in case.
  • Be aware of your self and your limits:
    • Always avoid drugs at best! Should you decide to toggle our advice, the very least you can do is to be aware of the effects such drugs have on you including when to say no to alcohol, knowing how much is too much will save you a lot of unnecessary drama, misery and embarrassment down the line, Stay sober until you know and trust this person well enough!  If your date is insisting you to do drugs or drink more then you know you can handle and comfortable with, politely excuse your self by ending the date and leave.
  • Drinking and driving alcohol limit:
    • If alcohol is detected by An Garda Síochána (Irish police) with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level of between 50mg and 80mg, you will receive an automatic disqualification from driving of three months and a €200 fine on top of that, so unless you are professional drinker with a pretty good alcohol measurements skills you should stay away from all mind alerting substances before driving.
  • Keep drinks and personal items close to you:
    • We have all heard stories about spiked drinks, knowing where your drink came from and keeping an eye on it at all times is advised. Practice caution by only accepting drinks from the bar tender or waiter. Substances that drinks are spiked with by sexual predators are odorless, colourless and tasteless, also keeping your purse, wallet, phone or anything personal close to you will save you a lot of headache for that night out.
  • Trust your gut instincts:
    • It’s completely normal to excuse yourself and end the date early if you are feeling uneasy or uncomfortable. You should listen to your gut instincts, if they are telling you that something doesn’t feel right, ask the bartender or security for help if you are not in a position to get away safely on your own.
  • LGBTQ Community:
    • Although now open and legal, Ireland is a relevantly safe place for Lesbians, Gays, Bi-Sexuals, Transgenders, Queers and other genders. However, never underestimate the conservative side of some narrow minded souls, therefore; you should be cautious when travelling alone.At Ello.ie we truly believe in the importance of being inclusive of all gender identities and sexual orientations, but  the world we live in is not without potential risk so it’s important to exercise little extra caution.

CONSENT & YOUR SEXUAL HEALTH:

  • CONSENT FIRST:
    • Any kind of sexual activity must start with consent and should include ongoing check-ins with your partner. On top of that verbal communication can help you and your partner ensure that you respect each other’s boundaries. Consent can be withdrawn at any time, and sex is never owed to anyone. Stop! It’s illegal to proceed if your partner seems uncomfortable or unsure, or if your partner is unable to consent due to the effects of drugs or alcohol. Read more about consent here.
  • PROTECTION FIRST:
    • Condoms are the most effective form of protection against sexually transmitted infections (STIs) during vaginal sex, anal sex, or oral sex performed on a penis. They are also an effective contraceptive for preventing pregnancy when used correctly, although condoms are effective for preventing pregnancy but they should not be used for STI prevention, as the small particles are able to penetrate them and beside that, not all STIs are spread through semen, meaning a condom is not a magic shield for a complete protection from all STI’s so anything that can be spread with skin-to-skin contact is not going to be protected for by a condom. however; the risk of contracting some STIs can be further reduced by using a vaccine.
  • KEEP IT IN CHECK:
    • Not all STIs show symptoms, your health is the single most important thing that you can’t afford to compromise on. Stay on top of your health and prevent the spread of STIs by getting tested regularly for more information check out this HSE STI Services.
  • HAVE A CHAT ABOUT IT:
    • Communication is Vital! Before you get physically intimate with your date, its safer to discuss sexual health and STI testing. Please be aware: The STIs that can still spread even if your date is using a condom are Herpes, HPV (human papillomavirus), Molluscum, Pubic lice AKA crabs and Syphilis. Bottom line: Chat to your date about their sexual health and well-being to ensure that they have been recently tested and results are clean.

STI CONVERSATION TIPS: If you feel you need help with starting STI conversation then please check these handy tips on our Stories page.

FYI: Even if you follow our tips above, no method of risk prevention is perfect. In an unfortunate incident where you have had a negative experience, please understand that it was not your fault and help for that is available. Please report all such incidents to Ello.ie and reach out to one of the resources below. If you feel you are in immediate danger or need emergency assistance, call 112 or 911 for and immediate assistance. 

 

EMERGENCY RESOURCES FOR ADVICE, HELP & SUPPORT: