It has been reported that data analysis conducted by an outside research firm shows that popular gay dating app, Grindr, has been sharing its users’ HIV status with two other companies. Additional reports from late yesterday say that Grindr has said that it will stop sharing this information. Evgeny Chereshnev, CEO and Founder at Biolink.Tech commented below.

Evgeny Chereshnev, CEO and Founder at Biolink.Tech:

“All practices where a company has access to confidential information such as HIV status, sexual orientation or even information on deadly allergies, should be illegal to share with other parties.

This type of highly personal information is like gold to hackers and can be used for blackmail, extortion or manipulation, where a lot of damage could be done to a person’s life. If this type of information was discovered by a prospective employer, for example, it could cost you the job. In some countries, simply being gay is enough to get you killed, let alone not employed or fired!

Our personal information needs to be owned by us; and only we should have visibility as to where and how this data is used, and on what basis.

We need to totally rethink the way we approach data – our digital trail and dDNA (digital DNA). Privacy of personal data MUST become a constitutional right that everyone has from birth. Data is there forever, and it should be illegal to take it from users. It goes back to the age old question – what is self? Who owns it and what needs to be co-owned by third parties for self to coexist in the society that we live in? For example, a healthcare system needs access to my vital health records in order to administer the right treatment, but they don’t need to own that data. We should own our own self.”

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