BOSTON (CBS) – Making a match through online dating can be a home run or a complete disaster. To help singles find that perfect person there’s now a new Boston company trying to take some of the mystery out of that first date.
“You just really want someone who is normal and doesn’t have a weird background,” explained Alissa Saltzman. Saltzman is recently divorced and is looking to make a connection online. “When you’re just swiping you’re getting a 30-second screen shot and like who knows if they are really working at Fidelity, if they really are Jewish, if they are really… whatever.”
For this single mother of two that simple online profile just doesn’t offer enough peace of mind. “When you have children you really need to be that much more concerned about who you’re bringing into your life,” she says.
A recent survey found more than half of online daters have lied in their profiles. And that led to a dating horror story for one Boston woman. “He was great. We were snapchatting, we spent a week talking, and then I was like I should look him up,” and what Julie Nashawatay discovered left her speechless. “He had just gotten arrested for a robbing a Brookline bank,” she said. “So he was a bank robber.”
It was a dating dead-end for Julie, but a Boston start-up was born. Julie’s new company now does the digging for you on the website http://www.aste.io. “An asterisk is an omission,” she says. “So, I thought if you took the risk out of the name you could take the risk out of online dating.”
For $30 anyone can get a background check in about 24 hours. “Just a first name, phone number, and location and then that’s it.”
The report includes: a full name, age, sex offender status, major arrests, social media profiles, and a work history. “No one is really doing the work to make sure that these people are who they say they are. And I just said this is what I’m going to do,” explained Julie.
Match, Tinder, OKCupid, and eHarmony all say they check names against sex offender registries.And eHarmony also recommends doing a little research on your own.
It’s advice Alissa now takes to heart. Before any first date she now logs onto Aste. “All those things you do to get ready for a date, this one more thing that you should be doing when you’re going out on a date,” she says.