Tinder (popular dating app) is now under a formal examination in Europe over the privacy infringement. They are suspicious for improper handling of user data. So far, it’s confusing and unclear which GDPR guidelines may have been violated by tinder. There were multiple complaints made by individuals about the popular dating app in several European (EU) countries.
What is the matter?
Ireland’s DPC (Data Protection Commission) recently announced an investigation on Tinder’s hidden process of accessing users’ personal data. Transparent examination is going on to check, whether it meets consent standards with obligations with regard to data subject rights requests. GDPR (Europe’s General Data Protection Regulation) gives a number of rights to its citizens over their personal data. For an instance, a user can request edition, copy or deletion of their data. Such entities processing people’s personal data must have a valid legal basis to do so. A new round of regulatory scrutiny aimed at tech companies is seen.
Data commission launched a separate investigation of Google last year over personalized online advertising. 4% of global turnover or up to 20 million euros, can be fined by regulators, which is higher for my breaches as far.
Why the probe?
There were several complaints made by individuals about the dating app data monitoring issues across multiple EU countries and in Ireland. The Tinder probe is a result of such active monitoring of complaints received from users. Ireland’s data governor has announced new investigations into MTCH Technology Services and Google. These are companies behind dating app Tinder. There are regular complaints that users’ personal data is being misused in violation of the GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation). Out of total 63 of complaints, 23 investigations into Big Tech firms (two of which center on Google) are active currently by the Irish Data Protection Commission. Other probed firms are LinkedIn, Twitter, Apple, Whats app, and Instagram. The Latest probe of Google stems is processing users location data. Complains came from a number of consumer organizations across the European Union. They want the Irish DPC in its active form to lead data supervisory authority for Google. Whether the search engine has a valid legal basis for processing the location data of its users, and they meet its rules with regard to transparency, is under investigation. In last May 2019, the regulator launched its first investigation into Google. The regulator wants to investigate whether its ad tech operations, the use of personal data to manage targeted online advertising through its Ad Exchange service. Tinder is now targeting too much on user’s personal data, so complaints raised.
As per reports by the Norwegian Consumer Council, tinder developers, as part of their business model, are sharing highly personal information with ad tech firms. They continued even despite the risk of violating tough privacy rules. There is a possibility of damaging their brands and also, losing consumer trust. Tinder was among one of the 10 apps which are probably found to be transmitting sensitive personal data and GPS location without users’ permission. This gives consent not only to other dating apps owned by MTCH but also to third parties. These third parties are involved in profile and advertising, also to Facebook and Google. If GDPR complaints are held right, it would be the first time in Ireland. If complaints would be upheld, it could result in a multi-billion-euro penalty for Google and same multi-million-euro fine for MTCH. On this, Tinder did not reply to a request for comment. Still, Google made a statement saying, People should be able to control and understand how companies like Google use location data to provide services to them. We will cooperate fully and will do all favor with the office of the Data Protection Commission in its inquiry. Google also added “in the last few years, we have made a number of product changes to enhance control over location data and user transparency”. The Irish Data Protection department is willing to step forward and challenge these large Big Tech firms, but reports do not see a quick turnaround to the probes. Ireland is ranked second after the Netherlands in Europe for data breach notifications.GDPR is making a mark in its field. In the very first year of the GDPR coming into effect, the DCP attended almost 6,000 notifications of data breaches and has come to a conclusion that a beech occurred in 96 percent of cases filed. So it went through a lot of paperwork to work upon. It could take a number of months or longer for responses to occur.
What next now?
As a result, the DPC has responded to long-lined complaints by consumer rights groups related to Google’s handling of location data. The authorities have reached out to Tinder for response on this data breach issue. So far, It’s complex, which of the GDPR guidelines have been compromised by this dating app. A formal examination team has also been announced.