Whoever was running Morgan’s fake account went out of their way to appear real. Asking to meet up earlier in the night at a location closer to home is common when haggling out the details of a date on Tinder. It is the practical and safe thing to do, especially on a first date.
This stranger was now playing a long game. I was told to text her on Friday, not Thursday. Contented that an unending stream of new messages was pestering Morgan, her harasser was ensuring Morgan’s frustration would continue long after the account was taken down.
The messages stopped by the end of the day, and Bumble eventually took down the account
The lines from “Morgan” would have worked on me, too-except I, wanting to make sure I didn’t give up that precious Friday night by being stood up, texted Morgan immediately.
“Hey, this is Brent from Bumble. Just texting to make sure I got that number right. See you tomorrow at Koerners. :)”
Bumble replied that it couldn’t disclose which Facebook profile was used to create the fake account since that would be a violation of the user’s privacy
“Hey Brent, could you please report that account on Bumble? It’s a fake account. I’ve been receiving countless text messages in three hours. I’d be truly appreciative if you can report the account for reasons like ‘stolen pictures,'” Morgan replied.
“Shit. That’s terrible. I’ve heard about this before,” I texted. “I can screencap the account if it helps at all.”
Her phone buzzed. Several images appeared over text. The first was of the profile. There were several shots of her during a photo shoot, and two featured her with her friends. They were all images Morgan had on her Facebook. The profile also had all of her personal information:
By the end of the day, Morgan had received more than 80 text messages and ten phone calls. She didn’t have to, but she replied to many of them.
“I did that partially because I didn’t want to receive more texts and phone calls,” Morgan joked. “But, on the other hand, I also feel kind of bad. “
Since you already found the fake account and each profile is tied to a unique Facebook account, could you disclose the Facebook account that was used to log in?
This is a serious crime. Not only has my privacy has been severely offended by countless text messages and phone calls, but also many male users have been cheated to meet at different locations and only found out the truth when they got there.
A Bumble spokesperson told VICE the company has multiple channels to report abusive behavior, including an in-app button and feedback email. “Both of these channels are monitored by a team of hundreds of live representatives,” reads an emailed statement. The company did not comment on whether it can help identify harassers.
Morgan eventually tracked down the Facebook account. It was almost an exact duplicate of her own minus her friends and her posts. It was created Thursday morning at 9 AM. The time between setting up the fake Facebook profile and when Morgan had started receiving text messages was less than an hour. Even if she complained to Facebook, whoever did this could start the incessant buzzing of her phone again in no time at all.
“It was really kind of scary to have all these unknown men calling and texting and showing up at my home. I felt threatened.”