Global Personals is one of the UK’s largest internet dating companies.
Headquartered in Windsor it makes £40m a year, has 130 staff and runs 7,500 dating sites.
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Ryan Pitcher and Tom (not his real name – he does not want to be identified) were recruited to join Global Personals’ 30-strong team of “pseudos” – a dedicated team of staff whose job it was to set up and run fake profiles on the company’s network of sites.
The team members would scour social networking websites and steal people’s photos to use on their fake profiles.
For example, if you use the dating section of the Evening Standard or the Independent, it’s actually Global Personals you’re signing up with.
It’s called “white labelling” – a well-known company can launch a dating website with the company’s branding all over it, but Global Personals runs the back end.
Ryan said: “You’d take Helga from Iceland and make her into Helen from Manchester and write a profile.