How Private Is Your Online Dating Data?Print This Post
In the first half of 2019, consumers spent more money on the Tinder app than any other non-gaming app in the world, according to Lexi Sydow, senior market insights manager for App Annie, an analytics company.
For its part, Facebook says it won’t use any Dating information for advertising. However, targeted advertising isn’t the only reason to consider privacy when you are providing information to a company. Whether you use Facebook Dating or more-established dating apps, there are still good reasons to think about where your data is going, who has access to it, and how it may be used.
What Do Dating Apps Know About You?
As you swipe, type, and meet up with online matches, dating apps are collecting all sorts of information. There’s what you tell them directly, such as your name, occupation, what you’re looking for in a partner, and your sexual preferences.
They gather a lot of data from your smartphone, too. Most ask for access to your location, and many sponge up details such as your contacts, your photos, WiFi and network connections, and files on your device. (You can use your phone’s permissions settings to limit some of that tracking.)
When you use a dating app, or many other apps for that matter, you’re also giving away data in less obvious ways. For example, with nothing more than the time you spend hovering over someone’s profile, you could reveal your interest or lack of interest in the type of person you’re looking at, which may include such details as their racial background or whether they’re smiling in their escort girls in Vancouver photos.
How Private Is Your Online Dating Data?
You might never choose to share those thousands of intimate facts with a friend or family member, but if you use dating apps, you are providing the information to companies that will collect and retain every detail. Or, more likely, you are sharing the information with one particular company.
Name a dating app at random and there’s a good chance a single company called Match Group owns it. The dating conglomerate runs Tinder, Plenty of Fish, OKCupid, Match, Hinge, and dozens of others. (A handful of popular alternatives owned by other companies include Bumble, eHarmony, and Grindr.)