author_name|Jon Fingas language|en-US provider_name|Engadget region|US site|engadget Software

Grindr location data reportedly for at least three years (updated)

Grindr’s willingness to share historically sensitive data may be more problematic than previously thought. Wall Street Journal moments Precise Grindr user location data was collected from online advertising network MoPub (once owned by Twitter) and has been available for sale “at least” since 2017, through its partner company UberMedia (now UM). The LGBTQ dating app blocked the app when its location was limited to data collection in early 2020, but there’s a possibility that outdated information is still available.

An unnamed former senior employee speaks to the company. diary He claims that Grindr initially did not believe that sharing location data with marketers created privacy issues. Ad executives reportedly told the company that real-time bidding or showing ads based on a user’s immediate location is transforming the industry.

Grindr said diary It said the 2020 policy change means it shares less data with advertisers than “any of the major tech platforms” and most dating apps rivals, although it doesn’t address historical information. Twitter said UberMedia was subject to MoPub’s data usage restrictions at the time, while UberMedia’s current owner Near said “thousands of entities” had access to data shared in the real-time bidding system. It challenged concerns that location data, which does not directly contain personal information, could help track individuals.

But Near’s claim isn’t necessarily true. Catholic publication column he said he used He sold Grindr data to track usage and ultimately overthrow a senior church official. There are also fears that countries with anti-LGBTQ laws could use Grindr locations to arrest app users – during the Beijing Winter Olympics, Grindr restricted location features to prevent such abuse with athletes. The US forced Grindr’s Chinese owner, Kunlun, to sell the company by mid-2020, in part because of concerns that the Chinese government could misuse personal information for American citizens.

The company’s own apps were also under scrutiny at the time. He reportedly shared HIV status with app optimization firms, and Kunlun’s Chinese engineers had access to a database of sensitive information for months. Security was also an issue. One vulnerability allowed an outside app to collect exact locations, while another allowed intruders to hijack accounts using just an email address. Simply put, Grindr was not as conscious about data processing as it is now.

Update 5/2 12:15 pm ET: Grindr reiterated his statement to Engadget and said, blog post By advocating their practice since the improvement of privacy in 2020, diary story “old news”. You can read the full statement below.

“Grindr users value privacy and we have put our users’ privacy first, even if it means lower income. The activities described would not have been possible with Grindr’s current privacy practices, which we have been implementing for two years.”

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