Donegal Gardai have issued a warning to people to be extra careful if planning to meet someone they have met online.
Local Gardai have issued a number of guidelines if people are considering meeting another person in person whom they have not met before.
Gardai have not said if the wanring is connected to any local incidents arising out of people meeting in person after first meeting online.
They have warned people to:
• Get a face picture from the person you intend to meet. Be very cautious of a person who doesn’t share a recent face picture with you, particularly after you have shared yours.
• If they don’t want to share a face picture, consider asking them to go on a live video call (many apps have this option built in so you don’t have to share your mobile number).
• Ask for their social media handles. Do you have friends in common on Instagram or Facebook? Be wary of new accounts with low follower count and few posts.
• Let friends know where you’re going – send a text to a trusted friend or in a group chat, include your live location so you can be found if you need help.
• Meet in a public place first. Take a few minutes to chat and feel confident you want to proceed before going somewhere private.
• Think before accepting food or drink. Unless you’ve seen them prepare it – it’s best not to accept to avoid being spiked.
• If an emergency unfolds, call 999. If something happens – report it!