Online Dating?

My case was moved to adjudication (finally!) and shortly thereafter I got a question which asked, in essence:

“Do you feel ashamed of using online dating sites and could you be blackmailed or coerced to conceal this?”

Uh…what? Over half the people I know use online dating. 1 in 5 relationships start online. What gives?

My answer was ‘no’, by the way)

The explanations I’ve come up with are:

  1. It’s for people who are married and using the internet to cheat.

  2. It’s for gay people who are still in the closet

  3. It’s for people with disgusting/possibly illegal fetishes.

How did it even come up during your initial interview that you used online dating sites? That may explain why you were asked the follow up question.

I have lived abroad for a few years and had a few foreign romantic partners, so they asked how we had met.

It strikes me as odd that they asked not about the foreign girlfriends themselves (any possible ties to foreign governments, foreign influence etc.) but about…shame I might feel about meeting girls online. Not sure how to interpret that.

In regards to your online dating, if you were ashamed of it or hide it, you could be susceptible to blackmail. They probably just wanted to see if it embarrassed you.

I understand WHAT they were asking, I guess my point is that it’s not 1994 anymore. The days of internet chat rooms and a/s/l are behind us - online dating is fully mainstream and I don’t understand how word of this has not reached the Department.

I think you are over-reacting, their job is to flesh out information of possible concern, especially because of the recent leaks of classified by those who had been granted clearances.

Tone can be hard to convey, I thought of this more as a funny/odd security question than something to be shocked/concerned over.

Thanks for all the responses.

I agree that feeling ashamed should be left for married or engaged! I have met my husband to be on We both were single and looking for someone for serious relationships.