Tinder is an American online dating and geo-social network application that allows users to swipe anonymously to like or dislike other profiles based on their photos, short profiles, and common interests. Once two users “match,” they can exchange messages.
By 2014, Tinder had about 1 billion “strokes” every day. Tinder initially required access to a Facebook account to use the application, but in August 2019, it began to allow users to register with only a phone number. It can be accessed through a mobile application or a computer’s web browser. A mobile device is required for registration. Tinder operates as a freemium business model. Now, as the COVID-19 vaccine becomes more available, this trend is likely to continue.
In other words, Tinder is expected to usher in the “post-pandemic handcuff season” and launch a new feature in case of emergency. Now, users can upload their phone contacts to select certain people they don’t want to see in the app, whether they are ex, colleagues, or family members. According to a survey commissioned by Tinder, 40% of people found their ex-partner on the app, 24% had met their family members, and one in ten had even met their teacher.
Of course, it would not be enjoyable to see your ex in the dating market again. But from a user safety perspective, the new features are more interesting.
However, instead of creating a simple form where you can enter the phone number or email address of the abuser, Tinder asks for permission to access the user’s entire contact list. This is obviously for ease of use; Tinder even claims that it has only the contact information of the blocked person, not their entire address book, but users can still be cautious. For many years, social applications have been using address book upload to capture a large amount of user data, which has little benefit except for the friend search function. Recently, with the emergence of new applications such as Poparazzi and Clubhouse, this trend has surfaced again. Fortunately, the latter stopped this practice in March after users strongly protested.
Bernadette Morgan, product manager of Tinder’s Trust and Security Division, said in a statement: “We are implementing Block Contacts as an additional resource to establish new contacts by helping them create a hassle-free space for them, thereby enabling them to Sit back and relax.”
Tinder tested the blocking contact feature in India, South Korea, and Japan and reported that members who used the feature blocked an average of a dozen people. To use this feature, go to “Settings” under the profile icon, select “Block contacts,” and grant app permissions. To block someone, you cannot rely on whether they are blocked on your phone. You must select everyone you want to block in the “Contacts” tab and touch “Block Contact.”
This user interface can easily block bullies and exes, but it is also suitable for people who want to block many people, such as all their family members or a group of close friends. This makes this feature a huge advantage for people who cheat using the Tinder application.
Tinder strictly requires a valid phone number to register, although it is not impossible for people to bypass the system by registering with a Google Voice number. Therefore, no matter what security features Tinder implements, please proceed with caution.