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This might be a particular concern for individuals who use niche dating sites, such as HIV-positive or queer dating sites. Your data is helping online marketers sell you stuff.
Some people don’t mind having an online dating site publicly indexed and searchable, but if you find the thought disquieting, then dig into your privacy settings and make sure that your profile is only viewable to other logged-in users on the site. Photo identification services like Tin Eye and Google Image Search make it a trivial matter to re-identify photos that you’ve posted online.If you use a photo on your dating site that can be associated with one of your other online accounts—for example, if it had previously been shared on your Facebook profile or Linked In profile – then your real identity could be easily discovered.Face it (no pun intended): there are a number of ways your online dating profile can be connected to your real identity, especially if you have a robust online life. Before uploading a photo, consider whether you’ve used it in other contexts.To maintain the highest levels of privacy, consider taking steps to obfuscate your IP address, such as using a VPN. Gaping security holes riddle popular mobile dating sites-still.In January, an Australian hacker exploited a security flaw in Grindr, the mobile app that allows gay and questioning men to find sexual partners nearby through the use of GPS technology.Millions of people are using online dating sites to search for love or connection, but users should beware: many online dating sites are taking short cuts in safeguarding the privacy and security of users.
Whether it’s due to counter-intuitive privacy settings or serious security flaws, users of online dating profiles risk their privacy and security every day.
In short, photos are hosted on an outside company’s servers.
As Joseph Bonneau explained, the main website provides an obfuscated URL for the photo to anyone it deems has permission to view it.
Here are six sobering facts about online dating services and a few suggestions for routing around the privacy pitfalls. Your dating profileincluding your photos—can hang around long after you’ve moved on.
Whether you signed up on a lark or maintained an active profile for several years, your online dating profile can be lurking around long after you’ve cancelled the account.
Information such as age, drug use, drinking frequency, ethnicity, gender, income, relationship status, religion and more was leaked to online advertiser Lotame.