The internet has its share of pranksters and weirdos.
Sometimes a person will write to you asking you for details of your services, fees and phone number. The person has a female name and a female email address firstname.lastname@example.org
You get excited about getting a new client, and give her all your info.
And then you find your phone number mischievously pasted on some website and you start receiving all kinds of prank calls. It was actually a guy pretending to be a girl!
What can you do to avoid this?
It’s useful to detect early whether the person making the inquiry is a woman or a man. That will save you time, effort and your valuable privacy.
There are some smart and free tools to help you. I cannot reveal ALL my tools on this blog (I don’t want the pranksters to get smart). I share them all in my training programs.
But here is a simple free tool that you can use right now. Find the IP address of the person sending you the mail. That will tell you what city the person is actually from. Now, if the city the person says they are from does NOT match the city the person is actually from, that usually means something is fishy. For example : person says she is writing from Delhi, but the IP address reveals the person is actually from Cochin. You can treat now this person as suspect and ignore them or give them misleading/confusing info that makes them go away.
Note : Occasionally, women will say they are from a different city, just to maintain their privacy, so I don’t immediately reject a person just because the city does not match the ip address. I may give the person some basic info (but not my phone number) and then based on their replies I may decide if it is really a woman or a prankster.
Finding their IP address is easy : Any good contact form can automatically get you the sender’s IP address. Here is one and it’s free : http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/simplemodal-contact-form-smcf/
Finding their city from their IP address is easy : You can do it here for free http://www.ip2location.com/free.asp