Is it illegal to create a fake dating profile? Watch

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sarah22345
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This is regarding my 17 years old cousin who created a fake profile oin POF using some male models pic Anyway somebody on the site has found out that he is using a fake pofile and been sending him threatening emails :rolleyes: He's really panicking now

This is what somebody has been messaging him

"Stolen pictures of a guy in America. If you like, I can trace your IP address and find out who you really are..... Then you will be busted"

"You have a day to delete your fake profile. Or the IP address that I have now got from your account will be handed over to the police and I will also expose you all over pof."

" Police do give a care. Already had four arrested from here. You are next. Tomorrow your IP address along with your home address is being handed in"

"Oh, and when I get to find out your real identity, you will publicly be punished. Severely. That, I promise"

Can this be done? He is really worried
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mackemforever
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(Original post by sarah22345)
This is regarding my 17 years old cousin who created a fake profile oin POF using some male models pic Anyway somebody on the site has found out that he is using a fake pofile and been sending him threatening emails :rolleyes: He's really panicking now

This is what somebody has been messaging him

"Stolen pictures of a guy in America. If you like, I can trace your IP address and find out who you really are..... Then you will be busted"

"You have a day to delete your fake profile. Or the IP address that I have now got from your account will be handed over to the police and I will also expose you all over pof."

" Police do give a care. Already had four arrested from here. You are next. Tomorrow your IP address along with your home address is being handed in"

"Oh, and when I get to find out your real identity, you will publicly be punished. Severely. That, I promise"

Can this be done? He is really worried
No it's not illegal.

The only thing that you could potentially get in trouble for is if you use copyrighted pictures on the account, but even then that would only happen if the copyright holder took issue with it which in this case is highly unlikely.
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sarah22345
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(Original post by mackemforever)
No it's not illegal.

The only thing that you could potentially get in trouble for is if you use copyrighted pictures on the account, but even then that would only happen if the copyright holder took issue with it which in this case is highly unlikely.
My concern is that this person claims to have got the 'real' identity of people using fake pictures and uploads they 'real' pics on his/her profile.Is that possible?
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JordanL_
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(Original post by sarah22345)
My concern is that this person claims to have got the 'real' identity of people using fake pictures and uploads they 'real' pics on his/her profile.Is that possible?
No.
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sarah22345
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Thanks for the answers.So if this person is crazy enough to contact the police and hands over his IP address will the police contact my cousin at least or are there likely to do nothing about it?

Do you think they are lying about 4 people being arrested?
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shawn_o1
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All dating sites will have some "fake" people, in fact some sites look established but ALL their profiles are in fact, fake...
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Radio
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If somebody sent me messages like that I'd be tempted to go to the police myself, they seem to be of a threatening nature. Maybe that's seen as an overreaction but I'd certainly want to get in touch with POF and tell them about the harassing nature of one of their members.
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sarah22345
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(Original post by shawn_o1)
All dating sites will have some "fake" people, in fact some sites look established but ALL their profiles are in fact, fake...
Well he made a profile on Plenty of Fish
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dean01234
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(Original post by sarah22345)
My concern is that this person claims to have got the 'real' identity of people using fake pictures and uploads they 'real' pics on his/her profile.Is that possible?
Its possible, its pretty unlikely though.

Its not illegal and chances are that the person is just making threats.
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XMaramena
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(Original post by sarah22345)
This is regarding my 17 years old cousin who created a fake profile oin POF using some male models pic Anyway somebody on the site has found out that he is using a fake pofile and been sending him threatening emails :rolleyes: He's really panicking now

This is what somebody has been messaging him

"Stolen pictures of a guy in America. If you like, I can trace your IP address and find out who you really are..... Then you will be busted"

"You have a day to delete your fake profile. Or the IP address that I have now got from your account will be handed over to the police and I will also expose you all over pof."

" Police do give a care. Already had four arrested from here. You are next. Tomorrow your IP address along with your home address is being handed in"

"Oh, and when I get to find out your real identity, you will publicly be punished. Severely. That, I promise"

Can this be done? He is really worried
Actually, yes, it is illegal, under the 2003 Communications Act.
But as for finding out someone's real identity, well that's damn near impossible without a court order, however if he has the same username for other websites, or if his IP is posted publicly on gaming logs and such like, then yes, it could be possible to connect the dots.
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sarah22345
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(Original post by Radio)
If somebody sent me messages like that I'd be tempted to go to the police myself, they seem to be of a threatening nature. Maybe that's seen as an overreaction but I'd certainly want to get in touch with POF and tell them about the harassing nature of one of their members.
Well I've asked my cousin to delete his profile, he said he didn't want to meet anyone just was bored and wanted to see hows it like.The member has been thretening him for a 3 days that they will get his real identity , expose him and report him to the police.I don't have a POF profile , so wondering if anyone on that site would be kind of to report the user

This is his/her profile below:
http://www.pof.com/member81219480.htm

Thanks
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sarah22345
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(Original post by XMaramena)
Actually, yes, it is illegal, under the 2003 Communications Act.
But as for finding out someone's real identity, well that's damn near impossible without a court order, however if he has the same username for other websites, or if his IP is posted publicly on gaming logs and such like, then yes, it could be possible to connect the dots.
but do you think the police would be bothered to do anything about it? half of the profiles on dating sites are fake.
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McMicheal
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(Original post by sarah22345)
This is regarding my 17 years old cousin who created a fake profile oin POF using some male models pic Anyway somebody on the site has found out that he is using a fake pofile and been sending him threatening emails :rolleyes: He's really panicking now

This is what somebody has been messaging him

"Stolen pictures of a guy in America. If you like, I can trace your IP address and find out who you really are..... Then you will be busted"

"You have a day to delete your fake profile. Or the IP address that I have now got from your account will be handed over to the police and I will also expose you all over pof."

" Police do give a care. Already had four arrested from here. You are next. Tomorrow your IP address along with your home address is being handed in"

"Oh, and when I get to find out your real identity, you will publicly be punished. Severely. That, I promise"

Can this be done? He is really worried
Unless he is impersonating those models or using copyrighted images, to gain or wrong someone, then no, nothing is really going to happen. And in terms of copyrighted images, all you'd get told to do is take them down first unless you got some monetary gain out of using them, then they'd also ask for some of that or sue you if you don't comply.

If the images are stolen as someone threatening says, then that would be an criminal offence, where are they stolen from? someone's cloud account or computer?

To me that somebody sounds just like people on some online game servers, "I'll tell the mod you'll get banhammer then!" etc.
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Radio
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(Original post by sarah22345)
Well I've asked my cousin to delete his profile, he said he didn't want to meet anyone just was bored and wanted to see hows it like.The member has been thretening him for a 3 days that they will get his real identity , expose him and report him to the police.I don't have a POF profile , so wondering if anyone on that site would be kind of to report the user

This is his/her profile below:
http://www.pof.com/member81219480.htm

Thanks
I'm not on POF either but hopefully that's the end of it now that he's removed his profile.
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sarah22345
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(Original post by McMicheal)
Unless he is impersonating those models or using copyrighted images, to gain or wrong someone, then no, nothing is really going to happen. And in terms of copyrighted images, all you'd get told to do is take them down first unless you got some monetary gain out of using them, then they'd also ask for some of that or sue you if you don't comply.

If the images are stolen as someone threatening says, then that would be an criminal offence, where are they stolen from? someone's cloud account or computer?

To me that somebody sounds just like people on some online game servers, "I'll tell the mod you'll get banhammer then!" etc.
He stole the pics from a well known Brazilian male models instagram.But he hadn't set up any 'dates' or anything like that. He says he just did it for the fun of it, curiosity and had no intention of meeting anyone.
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sarah22345
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(Original post by Radio)
I'm not on POF either but hopefully that's the end of it now that he's removed his profile.
The person said that they already have traced his IP and home address which is what's realy got him worried.As the person profile claims to show the 'real identitys' of the fakers.
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McMicheal
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(Original post by sarah22345)
He stole the pics from a well known Brazilian male models instagram.But he hadn't set up any 'dates' or anything like that. He says he just did it for the fun of it, curiosity and had no intention of meeting anyone.
Well then that's something illegal he did, hacked into someone's instagram account. He could be theoretically prosecuted for that. However, I don't think it's likely anyone will actually bother to do that.
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sarah22345
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(Original post by McMicheal)
Well then that's something illegal he did, hacked into someone's instagram account. He could be theoretically prosecuted for that. However, I don't think it's likely anyone will actually bother to do that.
He didn't hack in! It is a public instagram profile anybody can view and save his pictures.
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McMicheal
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(Original post by sarah22345)
He didn't hack in! It is a public instagram profile anybody can view and save his pictures.
Then he didn't actually steal anything. He's just using someone else's images that are probably not even copyrighted, without their authorisation. If you are using someone's images that are publicly available but not specifically stated to be free, for something non-commercial then it's only rude but not illegal, if you are using them to gain something out of them like money then it kinda is illegal and you could get sued for that because you didn't get permission first. In this case, it doesn't sounds like he did anything wrong yet. All that can happen is if the guy himself contacts you and asks you to remove the images, if you don't comply then he could sue you, but there wouldn't be much point to that if you're not gaining anything from them.

Just tell him to chill and that guy who's threatening him to f himself.
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uberteknik
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(Original post by sarah22345)
The person said that they already have traced his IP and home address which is what's realy got him worried.As the person profile claims to show the 'real identitys' of the fakers.
Sounds like a scam or a troll. It may well be they are deliberately worrying him and working him into a frenzy because they will next ask for money in order NOT to go to the police. i.e. blackmail.

Creating a fictional character is not illegal. Journalists do it all the time and they don't get prosecuted do they? Immoral if he hurts someone emotionally by doing this but illegal it is not.

As others have said, the only way they could have obtained his real identity is by hacking his account - which is illegal. So what if they have his IP address (even though I don't see how they could have it unless they have access to the Plenty of Fish web servers!)? An IP address will only tell them your cousins service provider. From that they will need a court order to ask the service provider for your cousins identity, physical address etc. They will have to prove to the judge etc. etc. etc. This will cost them money. The judge will laugh at them EVEN IF it were illegal which it is not.

I very much doubt the perpetrators are even in this country.

The more I read into it, the more this sounds like a vicious troll or someone has hacked into his PC/laptop.

Either way, ensuring he has the latest AV definitions and running a thorough anti-virus check, decent firewall, shredding of his profile history/temp folders etc. resetting his router to factory settings and reconfiguring with new password etc. will be good housekeeping and practice if they have managed to hack his PC.

EDIT: did your cousin use the models name and details AS WELL AS his Instagram photo's..i.e. date of birth etc?.......this could be classed as identity theft which is illegal. If he made up the details then ignore.
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