Grindr Letting Users Hide the App on Their Phones

  • Thursday, March 12 2020 @ 12:09 pm
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Grindr is upping its privacy practices by giving users the option of hiding the app on their phones.

The Discreet App Icon allows users the option of replacing the Grindr app icon on their phone with another symbol, effectively to hide the fact that they are using Grindr if someone else gets hold of their phone. The feature is accessible in the security section of the app’s settings. Grindr first made the Discreet App Icon available in countries where gay, bi and trans people are in the most danger, and now is launching the feature for all users no matter where they reside.

According to a company press release, the feature was developed with London-based human rights organization Article 19, The Guardian Project, and Grindr for Equality to help keep users safe, not only within countries where gay rights are not sanctioned, but anywhere that people are threatened due to their LGBTQ or gender status. This is especially timely as gay, trans and non-binary rights are being threatened around the world.

"For over 10 years Grindr has fought for the safety, recognition and approval of our community. In many parts of the world - including in the U.S. and Europe - we still see people being persecuted for being LGBTQ, so we are launching this feature to all users to help protect those who need it," said Jack Harrison-Quinana, Director of Grindr for Equality. 

In addition to the new safety feature, Grindr has debuted two new language versions of its Holistic Security Guide so that users can understand how to use the app safely – Kiswahili and Bahasa Indonesia. The guide includes three main parts, according to Grindr: digital security, personal safety and emotional well-being. The new language versions are in addition to the six languages the guide is already available in – English, Spanish, French, Arabic, Russian and Nigerian Pidgin. 

Grindr has come under fire for security issues in the past. Most recently, a report from the Norwegian Consumer Council found that many popular dating apps did not conduct background checks on users, including Tinder, Plenty of Fish, and Grindr among many others. This resulted in underage users as well as registered sex offenders accessing the apps. 

In addition, its parent company Kunlun Tech, a Chinese conglomerate, has been forced to sell Grindr after a US oversight agency concluded it could put the dating app users at risk, potentially allowing the Chinese government the ability to target those in the military, CIA, and other sensitive positions.

The new safety features are part of a bigger commitment Grindr has made in securing its users.

Harrison-Quinana added: "Grindr at its core, is about making it possible for gay, bi, and trans people to connect to one another regardless of their circumstances. I am proud of our continued efforts to help empower and improve the lives of LGBTQ people, particularly for those who might be in danger simply for being who they are."

For more on this gay dating app you can read our Grindr app review.