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To prove how simple it was to make the app into a digital bounty hunter, about Grindr, the hookup app used by 6 million men around the world: “The programming interface that makes [location] information available can be hacked by sending Grindr rapid queries that falsely supply different locations of the requesting user.

By using three separate fictitious locations, an attacker can map the other users' precise location using the In its recent note to users, Tinder said that it is “learning to be a better ally” to LGBT people.

Gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people are twice as likely as African-Americans to be targeted for a hate crime.

Trans folks, however, remain the most vulnerable segment of the LGBT community, despite their extremely small numbers.

Tinder worked with GLAAD’s Nick Adams, trans activist Andrea James and the creative team of “Transparent” to ensure that the solution met the evolving needs of the extremely diverse trans community.

Instead of making location sharing compulsory, the app should set privacy as the default. Looking back, it seems dating was much easier when I was a cis-gendered female, rather than it is now that I am an out trans guy.But there’s no denying that the dating part itself presented fewer challenges as a cis-gendered person.Many transgender people have been historically banned from the app, which asks users to report any “inappropriate behavior.” That self-policing, intended to filter out spambots and catfishers, allowed users to file complaints en masse about trans people — even though they weren’t doing anything wrong.Because it can be difficult to separate valid complaints from outright trolling, trans Tinder users frequently found themselves blocked due to false reporting.The trouble with Tinder, though, is precisely the thing that separates it from social-media platforms like Facebook and Ok Cupid: The app uses geolocation software to match up users with other singles in their area.That’s good if you’re looking for a hot date in your city on a Friday night but potentially bad for the trans community, which faces the highest hate crime and murder rates in the country.Users are presented with the profiles of potential mates and can swipe right on the touch screen if they would like to chat with prospects further, a conversation that takes place directly on their mobile device. On those same profiles, it indicates how far away “Gina—29” or “Stacy—42” lives.If you live in Manhattan, for instance, the fact that these eligible women live “20 miles away” may be a deterrent from making a connection.If users are able to pinpoint the location of transgender people in their neighborhood, they could exploit that same technology to target them for violence.For those unfamiliar, Tinder works by matching users with other people who live in their general vicinity.


  1. Aug 19, 2017. Sara is the host of the Queer Sex Ed Podcast. You can learn more about her work and listen to the show at on any podcast app. You can also follow QSE on Facebook at

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