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Arxan comments on certain dating apps leaking customer information to third party companies

January 2020 by Chad McDonald, VP of Customer Experience at Arxan

Chad McDonald, VP of Customer Experience at Arxan on the recent news that certain dating apps have been leaking their customer’s personal information to third party advertisement companies, which is in breach of current GDPR rules:

‘The companies in question have their entire business model built around sharing very personal data. They have a very strong financial incentive to push the boundaries as far as they can as fast as possible. Beyond obtaining consent from the individual to share their data, these companies have a responsibility to track and disclose how the data is used and shared at a business to business level. The complexity of some of these applications and their strategies for sharing data (i.e. Grindr and Tinder sharing data with Match) makes it difficult for the individual and ultimately regulators to unwind how personal data is used and where it ends up. At this point, no organisation can claim ignorance with respect to responsible use and storage of personal data, rather they have made a decision to play fast and loose with the protection of personally identifiable information.

Big Tech will always be reactive to regulation. They have financial incentives to behave that way. Business will push the boundary of responsible behaviour until legislators or the public push back. Unfortunately, the pushback often comes after the horse has left the barn. We’re at a point now where nearly every aspect of our lives can be found with a quick ping of a search engine. Getting back to a point of relative privacy will be an uphill battle.

Forcing Big Tech to care about privacy and compliance will take enforcement. GDPR and CCPA have real teeth within the regulations. Once these organisations are in a position of seeing fines levied and are subject to brand damage from front page news stories, they’ll begin to care a bit more about really aligning with regulations. One day hopefully, they’ll care simply because it’s the right thing to do.’

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