Tinder is following in Uber’s footsteps to introduce more security features in the app for users who are stuck in risky situations that could take place while on a date. New security features include a panic mode, check-ins for telling friend’s location and even options like calling authorities to their location in case of an emergency. Tinder users opting these features can boast a badge on their profiles which tinder believes will already warn any bad actors on the platform.
The safety features will be powered by Noonlight, a location tracking company in which Tinder’s parent company Match has invested. Match will launch these features by adding a new Noonlight tool in the app by next Tuesday in US. Match will further introduce these security features to its other dating apps such as OkCupid, Hinge and Match.com in US later this year.
The way these security features can be utilized is by triggering an alarm in the Noonlight tool section if the user is stuck in some untoward situation. Then the procedure requires them to enter a code sent to them. Noonlight calls the user in case of no response and further if there is activity or emergency is confirmed by the user then Noonlight will automatically contact the authorities.
The company says that they understand that false alarms can be raised accidentally or voluntarily but that’s a risk worth taking. Mandy Ginsberg, chief executive of Match said, “The false positives, believe me, we took them into account. If someone doesn’t respond, worst case someone shows up and knocks on the door. It’s not the worst thing in the world.”
To ensure user security, Tinder confirmed that all real-time location data will be handled by Noonlight only. Tinder or Match won’t have access to this information. The company is doing this to ensure such sensitive data can not be used for marketing purposes. But then, it is also upto Noonlight to ensure these practices.
Tinder still has past allegations of not handling sensitive customer data responsibly which can’t be overlooked. A Norwegian consumer council report revealed that various dating apps including tinder, spread various degrees of information about GPS location, sexuality and other personal information in irresponsible ways. In 2018, a major security flaw allowed potential attackers to use just a phone number to get account access. Later. it was revealed that the company doesn’t encrypt user photos.
Dating apps and Ride-hailing companies like Uber which traditionally were vulnerable to putting users in dangerous situations are now taking major steps to ensure customer safety. Match says that its the first dating company to integrate this type of service.