looking for love can be expensive

The ace apps dating came to our devices years ago to revolutionize the way we meet people through digital. badoo tops the list of apps with the most downloads in the world, with 493 million users in 190 countries; the second place is occupied by Tinder with more than 400 downloads; and there are many other similar apps, such as Bumble, GrindrMeetic, etc.

Through these online services, people have become more open to interacting with other users. According data collected in 2020 by Statista’s digital market outlook, 12.83% of Spanish users have used online dating apps and platforms.

12.83% of Spanish users use dating apps.
12.83% of Spanish users use dating apps.
Tim Mossholder on Unsplash

The success of these dating apps is more than guaranteed and more and more users are breaking the taboo and deciding to search for the love or to meet people online. However, its rise is not going unnoticed by cybercriminals, who sometimes use these platforms to deceive their victims.

“Data is gold for cybercriminals,” says cybersecurity firm spokesperson Kaspersky for 20BIT. Earning the trust of dating app users, the expert ensures that scammers can “open doors to many users’ personal and confidential information” to then blackmail them into broadcasting said data if they don’t give them money.

The most common dating app scams

Kaspersky’s spokesperson states that “the Apps Dating has become more secure from a technical point of view in recent years, particularly in terms of data transfer”. Despite this, he acknowledges that it is undeniable that it “continues to represent a significant risk when it is is about exposing users’ personal information too much, making them vulnerable to threats such as cyberbullying and dox [revelar información personal públicamente]”.

Despite attempts by dating apps to protect their consumers, the Kaspersky professional comments that “things are not rosy”: “Often people post a lot of intimate information, while forgetting or ignoring the possible consequences”. It’s not something exclusive to apps of appointment, it can also be given in the social networks.

Actions taken by dating apps

Among the cybersecurity methods that companies appreciate tinderMeetic or Badoo have tried to put in place to avoid scams on their platforms, they point out message encryption. Thus, they avoid attacks such as the man in the middlewhich consist of hackers gaining access to other people’s conversations via malware.

Some apps like Tinder allow verification of profiles for a more secure experience.
Some apps like Tinder allow verification of profiles for a more secure experience.

Additionally, the Kaspersky spokesperson mentions that most dating apps already have dating programs. bug bounty What offer rewards to experts who “help fix vulnerabilities seriously in their products”.

Is the person on the other side of the screen real?

“It’s always a challenge to find a balance between our digital presence and the privacy online and the shift to online dating adds more complexity as users must determine how best to forge bonds while protecting their Security“, warns the Kaspersky spokesperson in 20BITS.

In order to realize the individual on the other side of the screen is real or not, the ideal is to use platforms that verify users to be able to access them.

Tips to protect yourself from these cybercrimes

Kaspersky expert recommends “do not share too much personal information, do not link other social media accounts, select location manually if possible, use two-factor authentication if possible, delete or hide the profile if it is no longer used and use built-in messaging in dating apps.”

It is recommended to use dating apps chat instead of using WhatsApp or other social networks.
It is recommended to use dating apps chat instead of using WhatsApp or other social networks.

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