Ever heard of Tinder? It’s a new iPhone dating app that lets users select or skip other Tinder users, based solely on looks, with the swipe of a finger.
When you sign up for Tindr, you login through Facebook, select your sexual orientation and five Facebook profile pictures you’d like to associate with your account, and allow it to access your current location.
Then the fun begins. The app allows you to swipe through profiles of potential matches within your geographic area. If you see someone who catches your eye, you tap the green heart and hope they tap back when they reach your picture. When there’s a match, you’re given the opportunity to chat directly with the other person. If a picture pops that doesn’t interest you, you simply tap a giant red “X” and the image spirals off into the abyss.
It’s a pretty simple premise that has become wildly successful and addictive among the college crowd. Whereas online dating profiles can be stressful to write and time-consuming to wade through, Tinder makes dating simple: is someone hot or not?
Do you use Tinder or want to take it for a spin? Here’s a 5 quick privacy tips:
1. You have to sign up through Facebook, which means you’re giving this app full access to your Facebook profile. Make sure you’re comfortable with this before signing up.
2. You have to enable location tracking to use Tinder, which means that the app always knows where you are…and so do other Tinder users nearby.
3. Other Tinder users get to see your picture (which is taken from your current Facebook profile pic), your first name, and your age. It’s actually a lot less information sharing than in the typical online dating profile, which can have physical descriptions, religious beliefs, drinking, smoking, diet, languages spoken, field of study or work, and more.
4. Because you sign up through Facebook, there’s a chance you may receive a flood of unwanted friend requests and messages…or be awkwardly matched with someone you already know. We suggest amping up your Facebook privacy settings and making yourself unsearchable to the general Facebook public.
5. Tinder says that they won’t share your private info or activity on Tinder with Facebook or other users, but they’re totally fine with selling it to third-parties and vendors they were work with. Just know they could be shipping off your sexual preference, desired age in a mate, and conversations had via Tinder’s chat feature, to advertisers and third-parties.