Have you ever done any extent of people search? Trust me, in these days, it is slowly becoming an absolute must, for those active on social networks. The other day, a friend of mine added someone on a popular social networking site, when the person claimed to be a friend she knew from high school. The profile picture was all right, and the email address was slightly off, but she did not care. Over the next few days, a lot of her friends were “harassed” by this individual over the net. Some of them got spam messages in their inbox from the person. Others got rude comments on their photos and my friend was soon made aware of her so-called “friend” on the site who was making such mischief. Alarmed, she immediately tried to figure out what happened, by doing a short people search. Turns out, the person had a not-so-savoury past where he had done similar things to other friends of his. Nauseated, she immediately deleted him from her friend list, and blocked him for abuse, for good measure.

Have you ever had problem with spammers? One of the things you should do while making friends online is to check for real profiles, and do a people search, to make sure the profile is safe. There are a few ways to detect spammers. The next time you are on a social networking site, and someone sends you a friend request, you should do the following to prevent being harassed by any means.

1. First and foremost, check the profile picture and look around for other added friends. Generally, a profile that is fake, do not have too many friends, as most of them block the offender out.
2. Check if the person who has posted the profile has uploaded some “real” pictures on his/her own profile or on someone else’s, where he/she has been tagged.
3. Do a Google search with the name, and see if the profile turns up in any professional website. Generally, people are verified by professional networks, like LinkedIn and BranchOut.
4. Go for an advanced people search with one of the many free or paid portals available to you online to further convince yourself about the individual, if you do not feel safe still.

Overall, these simple steps of people search would make sure you get complete protection from fake profiles or online spammers, who might harm you in any way.