The internet has become a mainstream way to find love, according to dating agency Parship.
The online matchmaking service claimed that there is now a 50:50 chance that everyone knows someone who is currently logging-on to find a special partner.
Nearly eight million Britons used some form of online dating service in 2007, compared to 5.4 million who used a mixture of offline and online services in 2005.
Some 52 per cent of British men and 48 per cent of women have used the internet to find a date in the past 12 months, compared to 36 per cent of men and 34 per cent of women in 2005.
Over 53 per cent of singles intend to use the internet to meet someone in the future, rising to 65 per cent of 36 to 40 year-olds.
Tony Blin Stoyle, UK and Ireland manager at Parship, said: "UK singles, particularly those aged 30 to 40, recognise that as they get older and their social networks become smaller, they need to maximise their opportunities in order to meet a partner.
"Our research suggests that if you rely on traditional routes and wait for a chance encounter with someone special, you could end up waiting a very long time."
Victoria Lukats, a psychiatrist and dating expert for Parship, added: " Provided people choose an internet dating site that helps them to meet like-minded people, it can be a great way of meeting someone special.
"With the busy lives that people lead today the old saying 'love only comes along when you least expect it' is at best outdated. The internet now allows single people to be much more proactive in finding a relationship."
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