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  • Voltaire Staff

Grindr in legal soup in UK over data breach, leak of HIV status, of users



Hundreds of users are reportedly taking legal action against gay dating app Grindr, accusing it of sharing their private information, such as HIV status, with third parties without consent.


A London-based law firm revealed on Monday that users' highly sensitive data, including details about their HIV status and the dates of their latest HIV tests, were allegedly provided to external entities for commercial gains, reported Reuters.


Austen Hays, the firm bringing forth the lawsuit, announced that it is filing the case in London's High Court.


According to the firm, thousands of Grindr users in the United Kingdom could potentially be impacted by the alleged data breach.


At first, a spokesperson for the US based app said that it planned to "respond vigorously to this claim, which appears to be based on a mischaracterisation of practices from more than four years ago."


Later, the spokesperson updated their statement saying, "Grindr has never shared user-reported health information for 'commercial purposes' and has never monetized such information."


Chaya Hanoomanjee, Hays' managing director, said "Grindr owes it to the LGBTQ+ community it serves to compensate those whose data has been compromised and have suffered distress as a result."


The company must "ensure all its users are safe while using the app, wherever they are, without fear that their data might be shared with third parties," the statement continued.


Grindr's spokesperson responded, "We are committed to protecting our users' data and complying with all applicable data privacy regulations, including in the UK."


Austen Hays reported that approximately 670 individuals have joined the lawsuit, claiming breaches that allegedly occurred between 2018 and 2020. They anticipate that potentially thousands more could join the legal action.

 

 Image Courtesy: Unsplash

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