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Grindr is under fire for sharing people’s HIV statuses with third parties

Grindr is under fire for sharing people’s HIV statuses with third parties
[Photo: Porapak Apichodilok/Pexels]

Popular gay dating app Grindr is facing criticism for its questionable data-sharing policy. The company reportedly shares personal user information to two third-party app-optimization companies, Apptimize and Localytics, according to BuzzFeed News. This information includes users’ HIV status and when they were last tested.

The HIV status data is sent alongside users’ other identifiable information–including GPS coordinates, phone ID, and email. Thus, if this data were hacked or leaked, millions of users’ personal health information could be made public.

Grindr claims that its contracts with the two app-optimization companies are both standard practice and very secure. “The limited information shared with these platforms is done under strict contractual terms that provide for the highest level of confidentiality, data security, and user privacy,” Grindr’s chief technology officer Scott Chen said to BuzzFeed News.

Still, privacy advocates and others find this practice questionable. Even if both companies agree to treat the personal user data secure, Grindr is still adding new vectors for bad actors to zero in on. While the app isn’t selling the data for marketing purposes, it is offering other companies extremely intimate user information.

You can read the full BuzzFeed News article here.

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