Irish Daily Mail

‘Dating apps must target fakery’

- By Lisa O’Donnell

DATING apps must do more than just introduce background checks to protect users – and should target fake profiles, the chief of the Dublin Rape Crisis Centre has said.

It was recently announced the Match Group would introduce a background check for users of its dating apps, which include Tinder, Hinge, OkCupid and Plenty Of Fish. The company has teamed up with background-checking platform Garbo, and will allow users to view informatio­n from public records about their prospectiv­e dates.

However, Dublin Rape Crisis Centre CEO Noeline Blackwell said that protecting people on such apps is ‘much more complicate­d’ than just introducin­g background checks, adding that more should be done to tackle fake profiles.

‘Anything that gives people more informatio­n about who they are talking to or who they are proposing to meet has to be good in principle, because the real problem with these profiles for the various companies is that so many of them are fake,’ she told Newstalk Breakfast.

‘Fake because they put up wrong informatio­n; fake because they don’t put up enough informatio­n; or even fake because they make false profiles of real people.

‘The real problem is the anonymity... They can stay anonymous – you can’t get to the source of them.’

Tinder allows a user to see profiles of potential dates, which include selected images and limited personal informatio­n.

Garbo collects records and reports of violence or abuse, including arrests, conviction­s and restrainin­g orders. If a user has any history of such crimes, their matches on the app will be informed.

The checks will not include any drug charges or traffic violations, as research shows these offences are largely unconnecte­d to violence towards women. The feature will first be tested in the US, before possibly being rolled out elsewhere.

Apps including Tinder and its rival Bumble have also added tools such as photo verificati­on and in-app video calling to prove people are who they claim to be.

 ??  ?? Views: Noeline Blackwell
Views: Noeline Blackwell

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