How to tell if your boyfriend has been active on a dating site

Some people believe that that men are all the same, so if you get a sniff of your boyfriend sneaking around on dating sites you might want to carry out a small investigation into the matter. If you don't fancy taking the more direct approach of confronting your beloved with your suspicions, you can start playing detective in a number of ways .

Browser history

Check out your shared computer's browsing history. The method for doing so will depend on the software you're using, so take a look at your browser's user guide to find out what to do. If there are multiple browsers on your shared device, have a snoop through them all. Bear in mind that your boyfriend could be accessing dating platforms, or "gentlemen's" websites for that matter, through your browser's incognito or anonymous browsing features, so his activity may not show up. If he's repeatedly deleting his history and you're finding empty logs, you may want to ask him why he feels the need to cover his tracks.

Bank statement

If you have a joint bank account, keep a close eye on your statements. The majority of dating sites work on a subscription basis, so your boyfriend may have set up a direct debit or standing order to cover his monthly dues. If he's savvy, he'll be paying for any surreptitious membership with an account you don't have access to, but there'll be a chance he could have slipped up. If you find any suspicious payees, run them through an internet search engine. Dating sites often process payments through holding or parent companies.

Logging software

Invest in some internet activity logging software if you still have suspicions. Programs such as BT's antivirus software for business, OpenDNS's "Parental Controls Solutions" and programs from Award Software (see Resources) allow users to monitor all websites visited on a device or home network. Bear in mind that if your boyfriend's a bit of a tech-head, he may rumble your nosing if he discovers your spying software.

Browse a few sites

You'll have nothing to lose by signing up with a few dating sites to see if your other half has set up any profiles. Although there are more dating sites out there than you can shake a stick at, it might be worth checking out some of the larger players such as eHarmony, or (see Resources). Sites that aren't free to join typically offer free trails or allow visitors to view profiles without making a payment. Use your boyfriend's characteristics and interests to narrow your searches. If your boyfriend has any specific "romantic" peccadilloes, take a look at some specialist sites. Be conscious of the fact that he could end up suspecting you if he gets wind of your activities.

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About the Author

Michael Roennevig has been a journalist since 2003. He has written on politics, the arts, travel and society for publications such as "The Big Issue" and "Which?" Roennevig holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from the Surrey Institute and a postgraduate diploma from the National Council for the Training of Journalists at City College, Brighton.