Experts Column

How To Stop The Matrimony Scam Industry?

Mishi Sood completed her schooling from Sacred Heart Dalhousie and graduate from Lady Shri Ram College Delhi with a Masters's degree in Finance from Amity Business School. She worked in a Business Consultancy firm for two years.

Tania Sondhi did MBA in Marketing from Amity Business School. She has several years of high-level experience in the recruiting and HR industry. She has conducted executive searches for several top companies in India and the Middle East. After honing her skills in successfully recruiting the right talent for companies both in India as well as internationally, she has decided to use her impeccable strengths to bringing the right people together for relationships for life.

In India the matrimony industry is unorganized. Over the years, the matrimony industry has seen several online matrimony sites, agencies, bureaus, brokers throughout the country, most of them without any plan or adequate data to fulfill their promises.

In recent times, matrimony sites have become the hunting ground for cybercriminals. You may think you've finally found your perfect partner in life, but think again, because the person you could have been in touch with could easily be a fraud. Thousands of cases of matrimonial related fraud are registered with police across the country each year. This has made people see this profession in a very different light now- commercial, unethical and deceitful.

Not many people work in this field with passion where they actually want to make like-minded connections. Instead, they take this up very commercially only trying to maximize revenue on each client they are able to get.

People who give out matrimonial ads in the newspaper should be wary too. There are several agencies who will share profiles that suit your requirements on your contact details and then would ask you to deposit a fee so they can connect you to them . These profiles may be fake and they just use them as bait to cheat you. The targets are businessmen, Techies or NRIs.

Many agencies buy data from each other and keep circulating the profiles without checking the status of the clients. People don't know that their data is opened in several matrimony sites where fraudsters make a trap by collecting their personal information.

Searching a life partner through a free matrimony platform is not a good idea. There have been cases in recent years where people have been deceived at matrimonial sites. Such incidences not only financially impact an individual but can also cause serious emotional harm.

The government also advises testing the website's validity and ratings before registering on a matrimonial website. Consult your friends and family and find out about the website's reliability. Try talking to people who might have met their life partners through matrimony platforms.

Personalized matchmakers are a transparent way whom one can connect with that could be more comforting and reliable to engage for this search. Even the most well known matrimonial sites can have fake and unreliable profiles. With personalized matchmakers, one can be a bit more sure about who they are meeting and connecting with. As this process is selective and confidential, it may get slow, but one can be assured of meeting only compatible people.

To stop matrimony scams you should keep some pointers in your mind -

  • You can ask for the social media links of the person and go through them with a fine comb–how old their profile is, whether there are any inconsistencies in their timeline, how real their pictures seem, how many friends, etc. If there is any question, directly ask the person. The first alarm is typically a failure to provide a clear answer. Immediately block such people and move ahead.
  • Do not lend money to anyone – whether it's a girl or a boy, no matter what the emergency, no matter how small the number. The only way to get there is ' Refuse and Block.
  • Try not to use the email id on such online platforms, which is connected to your bank account. It's very convenient for fraudsters to find your personal details and hack your accounts.
  • If you feel the person is asking for too many unwarranted personal details, ' Refuse and Block ' at any point in the initial conversations. In fact, anyone who attempts to "express emotions" too fast, or wants to hurry things up without a proper introduction to the family, is someone to be steered away from.
  • There are independent verification companies paying a very nominal fee to conduct a background check on any individual. When you think things are getting serious, it's always wise to go for these facilities. You may think such a move would harm the feeling of your potential partner but it's always better to be safe than sorry.
  • Go for the reliable matrimony sites, and take their custom packages. Remember only those matrimonials who are responsible for checking the data of their clients. Choose the paid members even from ' confirmed' profiles.