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New ID system to screen out China's Internet dating cheats
Latest Updated by 2007-03-12 09:31:28
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A leading Chinese matchmaking website is to check the age, marital status and other personal details of prospective cyber daters against an official database to prevent deception.

From Monday, Baihe.com will screen its eight million online daters against an "ID authentication system" jointly developed by itself and the Ministry of Public Security, said Jason Tian, CEO of the online service that uses extensive personality profiles to match couples.

"In the long run, we'll arrange dates only for those who are proven to be telling the truth," he said.

Tian said the move would enhance trust among online daters, improve credibility and prevent deception, and employees of the website would keep the daters' personal information strictly confidential.

Most young Chinese rely on friends and relatives to find a partner, and lack of trust is often cited as a major reason for spurning Internet services. "People tend to misrepresent themselves online and you never know if you are being told the truth," said Beijing schoolteacher Sun Wei.

A survey by China Computer World Research showed 53 percent of online daters said they had been cheated and another 32 percent felt it was risky because prospective partners misrepresented themselves online.

Though more than 10 million Internet users in China have logged on to matchmaking websites, the survey found 75 percent of them had turned down requests for further contact out of mistrust and 80 percent felt stricter ID authentication would be the only way to remove such mistrust.

Most dating websites in China demand fax copies of the daters' ID card and qualifications, which are "easy to fabricate, but hard to authenticate", said Tian.

Industry insiders say Chinese online dating should have everything going for it, with vast numbers of single people, an ever-expanding Internet population which hit 137 million last year, and an ancient tradition of matchmaking.

Editor: Donald

By: Source: China View website
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