So a while ago I posted this short article about how easy it was to find someone on Facebook using just their cell phone number. Facebook recently rolled out some updates over that recent past that makes it quite trivial to find people. You can now narrow down your people search by knowing a few public details about them. You should also check out my online dating philosophy posting.
I am not a stalker. I am a great “Googler”. The internet makes it very easy to find people. There is too much public information about you that makes it very easy. There are plenty paid services out there but I have never paid anyone a dime.
How did I stumble upon this?
I am single. I have several profiles on different online dating sites that I use as tools to hopefully find that next last relationship. I am a romantic at heart and believe that there is that special someone out there for me. I have had a few really good relationships but for one reason or another it didn’t last. I am 33 and know my search is not over. I just don’t have that high school sweet heart story. My story will most likely end in a few years when I find that special girl who I end up spending the rest of my life with and we met when I was mid-30’s. I feel, at this point in time, I don’t have a lot of time to waste on someone who is not legit. If you are honestly looking for a real relationship like I am then that is where I start. I am not on any dating app to mess around. I also have a very proud career in IT and love what I do. I know how to use a computer and the internet more than most and am not ashamed to say that. It is literally what I get paid to do. I get paid to know more than you. I love learning new things and this is the perfect ever-changing industry that never fails to teach me something new. I am also very visual person. I want to know who I am talking to on the phone, so if I am able I will probably plug your name into Facebook to see your face while I am chatting with you. Sue me! The resources are there and I will use them.
People might call that stalking but that is silly. I wouldn’t call you a professional race car driver because you have a car, or an electrician because you turned on the light bulb. Those are both horrible analogies but for now that is the best I can think of.
How does that all fit together?
Before I would match a girl and hopefully exchange phone numbers. This served two points. The first was that texting is a ton easier than having to open an app that constantly wants your money. Texting on my phone doesn’t annoy me and short of calling is probably the easiest form of communication. Chatting through the app, depending on the app, can be quite annoying. I already have enough notifications on my phone. I don’t need another app going off like crazy when I am trying to have a meaningful conversation. The second point is that about 60-70% of the time I could see your profile on Facebook and tell if you are a real person, and if you are trying to catfish me by what is on your dating profile. People put their very best pictures on dating sites because they are trying to impress. Even if that means a picture that is several years old and maybe many pounds lighter. Most people update their Facebook profile much more often and your profile picture is one of many things that is public by default.
What has Facebook changed?
Everyone knows that for the most part your profile is private so that you have to be connected as “friends” to see what is shared. Yes, I know you are able to share things publicly and could have a very open profile. Facebook would love that! More data for them to mine about you and sell to advertisers to generate revenue. Now you can type a name into the search bar and Facebook will give you some options to narrow down your search like city, employer, school, and degree of separation from you (friend, friend of friend, mutual friend, anyone). You can’t have a Tinder account unless you connect it to Facebook. Bumble links to Facebook as well to pull initial information. POF (Plenty of Fish) has text blocks for location and profession. CMB (Coffee Meets Bagel) has the same but ask for ‘Employer.’ The main difference is that POF doesn’t share your name (first name only) unless you tell it to. CMB doesn’t share your name (first name only) until you match with someone.
With a name, city, I can narrow down a Facebook search pretty well. Tag on an employer and almost 100% positive match.
The different dating apps/sites have different amount of pictures you can upload for free, ranging from 6 to 9. Quite often someone will share a picture on their dating app that they have also had as a current or previous Facebook profile picture.
One more method of matching a dating profile to a Facebook profile. Instead of showing your name it shows your screen name. Guess what other sites have screen names searchable? Almost every single online profile out there, including Facebook. If your screen name is “Jason13115” and I plug it into Facebook or even just facebook.com/jason13115 it will show your public profile because Facebook makes your profile URL the same as your profile name. Remember back when Facebook asked you to setup a custom username instead of ‘Profile ID 23324621’?
Side note: Jason13115 was my first ever username/screen name/handle on AOL when I was 13 (or better – ASL 13/m/IN)
Side note, you can log into Facebook with either your email, screen name, or phone number with the same password. You have to allow this and authenticate your phone number but it will work. It also helps to be able to reset a password if you have multiple verification methods.
Do you think I am a stalker or do you think I am just a smart guy sharing some information that is helpful. If you were smart you would update your Facebook profile and change your privacy settings. Anything you have set to public is pretty much searchable on the world wide web. Your Facebook profile is cached in Google and they would love to know as much about you as they can.
Examples of two recent proof of concepts:
I love this site – http://bit.ly/2qVI92R – especially when I am wanting to be facetious (/fəˈsēSHəs/).