Meeting complete strangers on a chat line is definitely fun! When calling your local phone chat lines, remember that not everyone has good intentions. If you are responsible, you have nothing to fear, however if you fail to keep these basic safety rules you might end up in danger.
Below are the most basic guidelines you should follow when calling a phone chat service:
Never give out your personal phone number when talking on a chat line. Chat line calls may be routed to your personal phone, but these calls should not give the people you talk to your personal phone number. If someone hangs up on the call, never call them back from your own phone number, since many phones have caller ID.
When you are talking to people on a chat line, take the time to listen to others instead of talking about yourself. You are less likely in this case to accidentally leak personal information, and they’ll like you more for listening. Engage in active listening, asking questions based on what they talked about after summarizing what they said. This demonstrates that you actually listened, builds rapport, and minimizes the risk you’ll say something you don’t want to.
Never connect with a chat line when you are personally eager to vent about a matter or extremely emotional about anything. You are too likely in this case to give away information you need to keep private.
If you troll the internet to bring people into the chat line, make sure you are not using your personal email account, real name or personal contact information to do so.
Do not give out personal information such as your real last name, where you work, where you live, or information about your family. Remember that small bits of information like the park across the street from your home or your favorite restaurant you visit after work can be pieced together by a dedicated party to track you down. This is partially mitigated by creating a back story you can use when talking to people; the back story to hide personal information protects your privacy in all cases and yourself personally from the one on a hundred who may stalk you.
Be careful what you say on a chat line. You can’t delete it or take it back later. Even if the posting is deleted, others can capture a screen shot on their own computers or take a picture of it with a phone. You should take care never to copy and paste anything personal, such as instant messages or emails, that could accidentally be posted in another chat.
Never agree to meet with someone you met in a chat line (or a chat room). These encounters come with the presumption of sexual relations due to the charged nature of prior conversations, as well as the possibility of anger by those upset you don’t look or act like your persona.
Do not give anyone your picture, and never agree to a video chat.
When anyone says anything creepy or asks you questions that you’ve said are out of bounds, block them.
Do not respond to questions that are overly personal.
Keep chats friendly, warm and potentially suggestive. Unless it is an adult chat session, don’t discuss sex. In any case, never let a conversation spiral into anything dangerous or illegal. And if anyone admits to be under the age of consent, end the conversation and block them.