The Geek of Your Dreams is Online
As Valentine's Day approaches, Brits will be focusing their attentions on matters of the heart.
However, techies aren't particularly known for their romantic prowess. When it comes to matters of the heart, do net addicts stand a chance at wooing their true love?
Well, yes, it would appear. According to research by Intotheblue.co.uk, IT workers and "geeks" are the most romantic of all professions when it comes to buying gifts for their partner.
The gift experience website also revealed that 46 percent of IT workers are hoping to buy their other half three or more presents on the most romantic day of the year, while 32 percent were planning to head to the kitchen and cook their partner a slap-up meal to show them their love.
Furthermore, a whopping 82 percent said were considering proposing to their beloved on the most romantic day of the year.
"This research has shown that certain professions can have a level of influence on what kind of gifts that they are likely to get I think that this is reflective on the jobs that allow people to be more creative like IT workers, musicians and interior designers," said Rob Holmes from Intotheblue.co.uk.
And while its clear that tech fanatics are secret smoothies when it comes to wooing the opposite sex, is being a gadget-lover a turn-off?
According to Prezzybox.com -- the answer's no. Research by the gift website found that self-confessed 'geekettes' ( that's females with an interests in technology to you and me) who were single admitted to going on an average of 14 dates in the last year, five more than single gals that didn't love gadgets as much.
The website also said that 61 percent of men said they preferred 'geekier' girls because they were more likely to be interested in the same things, such as gaming, technology and gadgets.
"It seems that women who show the keenest interest in technology are not only the most outgoing in terms of dating, but also the most preferred by men," said Zak Edwards, Managing Director of Prezzybox.com.
"Maybe the saying 'blondes have more fun' should be changed to 'geekettes have more fun!'."
It's possible that 'geekettes' may be going on more dates, because they're widening their social circle and meeting people through social networks or online dating sites, rather than the more traditional methods of in pubs and through friends.
Once seen as a last resort, dating websites have gained a some credibility with the singletons. According to ComScore, online dating sites drew 22.1 million unique visitors in December 2008.
According to web hosting company Peer1, 92 percent of Brits admitted they will going online this year to find their valentine. Furthermore, 41 percent said they were more likely to find a date online, than in a bar or through friends.
Dating site Smooch.com revealed it has already seen a traffic increase of 62.5 percent on the since December last year, and expects to hit 80 percent by Valentine's Day.
"Each year we see a huge post-Christmas rush of single people looking to make their New Year's resolution of a new partner for Valentine's Day come true," said Martin Bysh, MD of Smooch.com.
But before you rush to boot up your PC and begin looking for love online, you'll need to ensure you take precautions when it comes to revealing personal information on the web.
Life assistance company CPP revealed that 17 percent of Brits are signed up to a dating site and 37 percent of those admitted they would reveal their date of birth on the first date.
Furthermore a quarter said they would give out their address on a first date while 20 percent would give away their bank details within six months of meeting someone, yet only 17 percent are willing to talk about their past partners after the same period of time.
Sarah Blaney, fraud expert at CPP, said: "All fraudsters need is a name, address and date of birth in order to steal your identity. People need to make sure they don't get swept up in the romance and then give out personal information too freely, which could them at financial risk".
And if not just identity theft that lonely surfers need to wary of. Security vendors are urging web users to be cautious, as hackers are also exploiting those looking for love online with spam and malicious websites designed to infect PCs with malware.
Panda Security said it was not surprised see numerous emails in circulation with links for downloading romantic greetings cards, or with subjects related to Valentine's Day.
However, the links usually lead to malicious sites, and the attachments in emails, are in fact malware designed to infect PCs.
Panda also said cybercriminals were turning their attentions to social networks, such as Facebook or Twitter , as they provide access to millions of users and have become just as popular among the criminal fraternity for spreading malware via emails.
The security vendor urged web users not to click on any links included in email messages, even though they may come from reliable sources.
"It is better to type the URL directly in the browser. This rule applies to messages received through any mail client, as well as those in Facebook, Twitter, or other social networks or messaging applications, etc," Panda said.
Meanwhile, Symantec which has tracked the most popular subject lines for spam emails related to Valentine's Day revealed that in light of the economic downturn, spammers are even offering to save you money on jewellery.
The security firm warned web users never to respond to spam, as a response will let the spammer know he has reached an active email address, and this just leads to even more spam.
Symantec also said web users should get multiple email addresses for multiple purposes.
"Have one email address specifically for personal use, known only to family, friends and colleagues. Another email address could be used for mailing lists and newsletters, and still another for online inquires and orders," said Symantec.
And finally, for all those web users that are sick of romance on the net, shopping website OffersSupermarket.co.uk revealed that 41 percent of Brits would rather go without their partner for a week than the internet.
Looks like not all web users are loved up, then!