HIPAA-like protocols a good idea for apps like Grindr

Grindr had been sharing user information with third-party app-testing companies, unleashing a wave of criticism against the gay dating app for potentially putting its users at risk of having information from their profiles, including HIV status, released more widely than they had intended or understood when they consented to using the app. The company has since ended the practice.

I don’t think the sharing of user information with app-testing companies poses a significant threat for abuse, even for information as sensitive and stigmatized as HIV status, but I do think there are necessary steps companies like Grindr can and should take to ensure user privacy and safety from abuse. Fortunately, the health care field has already set such a standard in the form of strict protocols from the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA).

Source: HIPAA-like protocols a good idea for apps like Grindr.

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