How Secure Are Online Dating Apps? Know Here.
Keywords – best internet service provider in Mumbai, internet service provider in Chennai
Using a dating mobile app is all about knowing others and providing limited personal information just as required and not misusing the good internet network provided by your internet service provider in Chennai, Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata, or any other city. Unfortunately, when it comes to using dating services, then there are high privacy and security concerns involved. At an important conference of MWC21, Kaspersky’s senior malware analyst named, Shishkova, presented an informational report on online dating applications. Discussed here is the conclusion derived from using online dating mobile apps and what you as a user must do to keep your personal data and info safe.
Data app security – The change you must be aware of in 4 years
After researching the 9 popular and common dating services of the year 2017, researchers of Kasperky drew the conclusion that dating apps have major problems linked with the secure transfer of the user data and its storage as well as accessibility to other users. Here are some of the major threats highlighted –
- Of the total 9 apps reviewed, 6 did not hide the location of the user.
- 4 made it nearly possible and easy to view the user’s location and real name.
- 4 permitted the outsiders to intercept the app forwarded details, which contained sensitive details.
The above findings were from the year 2017. However, in the year 2021, it was decided to see how such apps had transformed. The study majorly concentrated on the 9 most popular dating applications, i.e., OkCupid, Tinder, Mamba, Bumble, Badoo, Happn, Feeld, Her and Pure. Note that it was found that the highly used dating apps were still the same as 4 years ago.
Security of the storage and data transfer
In the past 4 years, data transfer between the app and server has considerably improved. Firstly, all these 9 popular apps were encrypted. Next, all of them feature or showcase mechanisms against spoofing attacks upon fake identities. In such a scenario, the app may automatically stop transmitting data if it recognises a fake profile. Moreover, the app Mamba additionally shows a warning signal revealing the connection is highly insecure and stops you from dating or connecting with anyone with a fake identity.
As for the data stored on your device, any potential attacker may still get access by somehow getting in touch with the superuser or root rights. But this is an extremely unlikely event. Apart from this, root access in any incorrect hands may make your device defenceless, and hence data theft may happen from your dating app. To avoid such a scenario, ensure to sign in using a secure WIFI connection and not use a public WIFI for it. Such events may happen to you if you are careless and sign in using an unencrypted public WIFI. Thus, no matter whichever city you reside in, whether Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata, or Delhi, ensure to get in touch with a trustworthy internet service provider to select the preferred WIFI plan as per your budget and use the WIFI from the convenience of your home. Doing so would allow you to enjoy a secure and private connection and date authentic people.
So, this means, suppose you are staying in Mumbai, then instead of visiting any restaurant, bar, or departmental store to access free public WIFI for using your dating app or any other internet-linked work, ensure to zero on the best internet service provider in Mumbai to select a preferred WIFI plan and use it with zero hassle from the comfort of your home.
Passcode emailed through clear text
2 out of the 9 dating apps under review – Badoo and Mamba, mail you if you are a newly registered user, the password in text format. As many of you hardly make changes to your passcode instantly after registration and may become sloppy about mail security, this is not a great practice. Just by hacking your mail or intercepting your email, any potential attacker may discover your passcode and use the same to gain complete access to your account too.
Mandatory profile picture
One of the issues with dating apps is screenshots of your profiles or conversations may be misused for shaming, doxing and other illegal or malicious purposes. Unfortunately, of 9 apps, just one, i.e., Pure, lets you use your account without adding any photo. It even handily disables the screenshots. The next important app, Mamba, offers a free photo blurring feature, permitting you to show your photo only to those whom you choose. Other apps too offer this feature, but you must pay a fee for the same.
Social networks and dating apps
All the online dating apps in question, besides Pure, permit you to register via a social media account, most often using Facebook. Note that this is one of the secure options for you if you do not want to share your phone number in dating apps. However, in case you have no account on Facebook, you may end up sharing your phone number. The issue is most of the applications automatically pull the Facebook profile pics to your dating app.
Additionally, there are many dating applications that recommend you as a user to link your profile to other social networks and online services like Spotify and Instagram so that all your new photos and your favourite music are added automatically to your profile. While this is an added benefit for an authentic individual searching for a profile like you, sharing so much info with a fraud individual may create massive issues for you.
Perhaps one of the highly controversial aspects of using a dating app is you may require giving your location. Out of the 9 apps that were investigated, 4 dating apps, namely Bumble, Tinder, Her and Happn, required you to share your geolocation. The remaining may allow you to change your coordinate to the general region. However, this is completely possible in the case of a paid version only. Happn has zero such options, but the paid version permits you to hide out the distance prevalent between you and the other app user. Badoo, Mamba, Pure, OkCupid, Feeld and Pure do not need mandatory access to the geolocation and allows you to specify your location manually, even in the free version.
So, while using the dating app, do not just pay attention to the WIFI network you are plugged into but also the details and features you are sharing and using, respectively, on the app for complete security to meet authentic, real individuals and not fake ones.