Married men posing as single, serial daters looking to hook up and stalkers on the prowl, beware. Matrimonial websites may soon set up firewalls against men who put up fake profiles.
Increasing instances of women being cheated while looking for grooms online has prompted women and child development minister Maneka Gandhi to intervene. In a meeting this week with senior representatives of leading websites such as Bharat Matrimony and Jeevansathi.com, she advised beefing up security features and suggested making Aadhaar numbers mandatory to keep out or track down frauds.
“Making Aadhaar mandatory is one of the ideas I suggested to ensure the identity of a person is genuine. These websites need to recognize there is a problem and they need to come up with a solution,” Gandhi told HT.
Presently, a mobile number is the only requirement to put up one’s profile and the portal verifies the number. This is clearly not enough, said Gandhi.
“We have set the websites a deadline of a week to come up with an effective mechanism to track the online activity of men who put up profiles. Our idea is to ensure that stalkers, serial daters and married men posing as single get filtered out,” she added.
“The representatives conceded that there was a need to do more. “It’s an evolving system and our technology teams are constantly working on strengthening safety features to detect fraud,” said Rohan Mathur, national sales head, Jeevansathi.com.
However, they are skeptical about making Aadhaar mandatory. “We are open to the idea but can’t stop people from registering if they don’t have an Aadhaar number. Our internal checks are quite stringent. We also carry out physical verifications if there is a complaint or if our system comes across dubious profiles,” said Kaushik Tiwari, vice-president, Bharat Matrimony.
Marriage websites are hugely popular in India. Jeevansathi.com, for instance, reported 5.6 million profiles in its annual report for 2012-13.