Meeting new people on Friendly is fun and exciting, but you should always be cautious when interacting with people you don’t know. Always put your safety first and use your best judgement when chatting on the app or meeting in person. Here are some Safety Tips to help you stay safe during your experience with the Friendly App.
Never Send Money or Share Financial Information
Never send money to anyone even if the person claims to be in an emergency. Never share information that could be used to access your financial accounts. If another user asks you for money, report it to us immediately at firstname.lastname@example.org
For tips on avoiding scams, check out some advice from the U.S Federal Trade Commission on the FTC website or watch the video below.
Protect Your Personal Information
Never share personal information, such as your social security number, home or work address, or details about your location or daily routine (e.g., that you go to a specific grocery store every Saturday) with people you don’t know. If you are a parent, limit the information that you share about your children on your profile and while chatting. Avoid sharing details such as your children’s names, where they go to school, or their ages or genders.
Stay on the Platform
Keep conversations on the Friendly App while you’re still getting to know someone. People with bad intentions often try to move the conversation to text, messaging apps, email, other social media apps, or phone.
Be cautious with Long Distance Relationships
Watch out for scammers who claim to be from your country but stuck somewhere else, especially if they ask for financial help to return home. Be wary of anyone who will not meet in person, they may not be who they say they are. Be weary of someone that avoids your questions or insists on a serious relationship immediately or without meeting in person.
Report All Suspicious and Offensive Behavior
Block and report anyone that violates our terms. Here are some examples of violations:
- Requests for money or donations
- Underage users
- Harassment, threats, and offensive messages
- Inappropriate or harmful behavior during or after meeting in person
- Fraudulent profiles
- Spam or solicitation including links to commercial websites or attempts to sell products or services
You can report suspicious behavior by emailing email@example.com. For more information, check out our Community Guidelines here
Protect Your Account
Always make sure you pick a strong password, and always be careful when logging into your account from a public or shared computer. Friendly will never send you an email asking for your username and password information — if you receive an email asking for account information, report it immediately by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Meeting in Person
Take your time and get to know the other person before agreeing to meet or chat off Friendly. Don’t be afraid to ask questions to screen for any red flags or personal dealbreakers.
Meet in Public and Stay in Public
Meet for the first few times in a populated, public place — never at your home, their home, or any other private location. If any user pressures you to go to a private location when you have already refused, feel free to report them.
Tell Friends and Family About Your Plans
Tell a friend or family member of your plans, including when and where you’re going. Have your cell phone charged and with you at all times.
Be in Control of Your Transportation
Be in control of your transportation so that you can leave whenever you want. If you’re driving, it’s a good idea to have a backup plan such as a ride-share app or a friend to pick you up.
Know Your Limits
Be aware of the effects of drugs or alcohol — they can impair your judgment and your alertness. Do not let anyone try to pressure you to use drugs or drink more than you’re comfortable with. If they continue to do so, call a friend or family member and kindly leave.
Don’t Leave Drinks or Personal Items Unattended
Know where your drink comes from and know where it is at all times — only accept drinks poured or served directly from the bartender or server. Many substances that are slipped into drinks to facilitate sexual assault are odorless, colorless, and tasteless. Also, keep your phone, purse, wallet, and anything containing personal information on you at all times.
If You Feel Uncomfortable, Leave
Don’t be afraid to end the date early if you’re feeling uncomfortable or unsafe. If you ever feel unsafe, ask someone nearby for help. If you are in a commercial establishment, it is always best to ask one of the employees in the establishment for help.
Be careful while traveling. We recognize and believe in the importance of being inclusive of all gender identities and sexual orientations, but the reality is this: nowhere in the world is without potential risk, and some countries have specific laws that target LGBTQ+ people. Check out the laws around you when you travel to a new place and research what types of legal protection, if any, are available to you based on sexual orientation. In the event that you’re in unsafe territory, we suggest that you log out of or temporarily remove your Friendly App while you are there.
It’s important to exercise extra caution if you choose to connect with new people in these countries – as some law enforcement have been known to use apps as tools for potential entrapment. Some countries have also recently introduced laws that criminalize communications between individuals on same-sex dating applications or websites and even aggravate penalties if that communication leads to sexual encounters. Visit ILGA World to see the latest sexual orientation laws by country, and consider donating to support their research.
Sexual Health & Consent
Friendly is an app designed to meet friends and is not intended for sexual activity or dating, although, we do understand that meeting new friends can potentially lead to that. If you find yourself in that type of situation, please review the tips below to help keep you safe.
When used correctly and consistently, condoms can significantly reduce the risk of contracting and passing on STI’s like HIV. But, be aware of STIs like herpes or HPV that can be passed on through skin-to-skin contact. The risk of contracting some STIs can be reduced through vaccination.
Know Your Status
Not all STIs show symptoms, stay on top of your health and prevent the spread of STIs by getting tested regularly. Here’s where you can find a clinic near you (US only).
Talk About It
Before you get physically intimate with someone, talk about sexual health and STI testing. In some places, it’s actually a crime to knowingly pass on an STI. Here are some tips to help you start the conversation with a potential partner.
All sexual activity must be consensual and should include ongoing consent with your partner. Consent can be withdrawn at any time and sexual activity is never owed to anyone. Do not proceed with sexual activity if your partner seems uncomfortable or unsure, or if your partner is unable to consent due to the effects of drugs or alcohol. Read more about consent here.
Resources for Help, Support, or Advice
Always remember — even if you follow these tips, no method of risk reduction is perfect. If you have a bad experience, please know that it is not your fault and help is available. Report any incidents to Friendly, and consider reaching out to one of the resources below. If you feel you are in immediate danger or need emergency assistance, call 911 (U.S. or Canada) or your local law enforcement agency.
RAINN’s National Sexual Assault Hotline
1-800-230-7526 I www.plannedparenthood.org
National Domestic Violence Hotline
1-800-799-SAFE (7233) or 1-800-787-3224 I www.thehotline.org
National Human Trafficking Hotline
1-888-373-7888 or text 233733 I www.humantraffickinghotline.org
National Sexual Violence Resource Center
1-877-739-3895 I www.nsvrc.org
National Center for Missing & Exploited Children
1-800-THE-LOST (843-5678) I www.cybertipline.com
Cyber Civil Rights Initiative
1-844-878-2274 I www.cybercivilrights.org
VictimConnect – Crime Victim Resource Center
1-855-4VICTIM (855-484-2846) I www.victimconnect.org
FBI Internet Crime Complaint Center
LGBT National Help Center
1-888-843-4564 I www.glbtnationalhelpcenter.org
1-877-565-8860 (US) or 1-877-330-6366 (CA) I www.translifeline.org
If you are outside the US:
- Click here for additional resources in many of the countries where we operate.
- Click here for information regarding international sexual orientation laws from the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association (ILGA).