I-Team: Tap that app - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

I-Team: Tap that app

I-Team: Tap that app

POPLAR BLUFF, MO (KFVS) -

Looking for love? Millions turn to online dating sites and apps for romance, but you could be playing with fire.

The web is crawling with more options than ever before.

Brandy Sappington has been there, done that.

"[I tried] all these different sites and had apps on my phone," said Sappington.

The options are plentiful these days from Tinder, Plenty of Fish, OKCupid, the list goes on.

"Every time I met someone it seemed they were horrible liars, every single time," said Sappington.

She ended up falling in love with, and marrying, a man she met offline, but Sappinton said his online obsessions destroyed their relationship.

"He went to visit his mom who I thought was sick and he didn't come back," said Sappington. "So, I got online and did a little digging around and sure enough he had 15 different profiles."

Brandy said her husband was, and still is, prowling on dating sites, scamming other women.

"It was crazy like I was looking at a total stranger," said Sappington.

Adding insult to injury, she found out she was pregnant with twins right after he left.

The girls are now 14 months old.

"I cried and cried because he has never met them, he never came back," she said.

Enter at your own risk, the online world can help you or hurt you.

"There absolutely is a dark side, and the dark side is you don't know that person," said Detective Scott Phelps.

As for new warnings about these sites? There really isn't anything too recent.

For example, the FBI hasn't put anything out since 2011.

Detective Scott Phelps of the Poplar Bluff Police Department investigates cyber crimes.

He said look for two red flags.

"First, if someone starts asking for money," said Phelps.

Secondly, he said another red flag is if someone starts asking a bunch of personal questions way too soon.

Sara Guyette is a former newspaper reporter.

She did her homework on the man she met online.

"I was like, what if he's a serial killer," said Sara as she laughed.

Bob Guyette signed up for Match.com in 2000.

"You have to actively delete your account or it stays on there," said Bob.

So, five years later, he got an e-mail out of nowhere from a woman named Sara.

"I did it out of boredom because I wanted to meet someone, but was sick of the bar scene and wasn't meeting anyone at my job at the time," said Sara.

Sara and Bob talked for awhile, then started dating.

"By that News Years Eve of 2006 we were married," said Sara.

They are now expecting baby number four.

"I knew from the moment I met him we were going to be married," said Sara.

Bob said he felt the same way.

Sara Guyette said she made sure to run a background check on Bob, trying to find out everything she could about him first.

She suggests you become your own detective too.

Brandy Sappington wishes she had done that.

"I really wish people would be more careful, I wish I had been more careful," said Sappington.

The I-Team did a quick test on some of the more trendy apps, like Tinder, and some of the more racy "hook-up" apps.

In no time at all we had several messages from potential dates.

One app showed that there were men and women ready to meet up who were in some cases just 500 feet away.

From those who have used these sites and apps before, they say the message is that you make sure you know what you're getting into.

While finding the love of your life is possible, there's also a good chance you'll click or tap right into a dating disaster.

"You never really know anyone," said Brandy Sappington. "It's scary."

As for the financial risk, according to new research from IBM Security, more than 60 percent of leading dating mobile apps they studied are vulnerable to a variety of cyber-attacks.

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