There was a 2010 documentary, “Catfish,” about it (that’s where the term comes from), which spawned an MTV show of the same name. And earlier this year, Manti Te’o, a Notre Dame football player, contending for the Heisman trophy and headed for the NFL, was caught up in a scandal about a fake dead girlfriend, a fraud apparently perpetrated by a young man he knew.
So, with all the overblown, exaggerated and downright fraudulent online personalities out there, how do you keep from getting drawn into a relationship with someone who is a complete fabrication?
Some red flags
Here are just a few signs the person you are engaging with online might not be who s/he claims to be.
It’s hard to admit you might be getting scammed, so talking with a parent or friend about the relationship can be a good way to see if anything sounds fishy to someone who is a little less invested.