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Grindr asked to pay $11.7 million for illegally sharing private user information with advertisers

The information Grindr shared could “potentially” reveal someone's sexual orientation without their consent.

By: HT TECH
Updated on: Aug 21 2022, 14:32 IST
FILE PHOTO: Grindr app is seen on a mobile phone in this photo illustration taken in Shanghai, China March 28, 2019. REUTERS/Aly Song/Illustration/File Photo (REUTERS)
FILE PHOTO: Grindr app is seen on a mobile phone in this photo illustration taken in Shanghai, China March 28, 2019. REUTERS/Aly Song/Illustration/File Photo (REUTERS)

Grindr is going to be fined 100 million Norwegian kroner, which is about $11.7 million by the Norwegian Data Protection Authority for illegally sharing private user information with advertisers, as per a report in the New York Times.

In January 2020, the Norwegian Consumer Council had filed three complaints against the dating app for sharing personal information including users’ locations and device information with advertisers. One of those advertisers was MoPub, Twitter’s mobile ads company, reports The Verge.

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Associating this information with a user could potentially indicate their sexual orientation without their consent. Now, the Norwegian Data Protection is taking action against Grindr for this.

Grindr has time till February 15 to respond to the Norwegian Data Protection Authority’s ruling.

Also Read: Some Android apps like Grindr, OkCupid, Bumble are vulnerable to major security flaw

“We continually enhance our privacy practices in consideration of evolving privacy laws and regulations, and look forward to entering into a productive dialogue with the Norwegian Data Protection Authority,” Bill Shafton, Grindr’s VP of business and legal affairs, said in a statement to The Verge.

Grindr is not known for taking “great care” of users’ security and has erred greatly in the past as well. In April 2018, Grindr was caught exposing users’ HIV statuses to two other companies, which they have since stopped doing.

Another vulnerability was spotted in October 2020. Thanks to this flaw, anyone who knew a user’s email ID could potentially access their account.

After a US government committee expressed national security concerns about Grindr, it was sold to investor group San Vicente Acquisition by its Chinese owners in March 2020.

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First Published Date: 26 Jan, 12:39 IST
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