How to use dating apps semi-anonymously
Whether you’re on Tinder, Hinge, or Tudder (it’s an app for farmers to meet cows, platonically!), Safety is key. You never know who you’ll meet when you’re separated by a screen and a grainy photo.
With your digital privacy more at stake than ever, it’s good to practice a little stealth when you venture into the dating world.
This week, Wired covered the ways you can approach the dating app game a little more carefully. We’ve gone ahead and added some tips you should use on your quest to find a mate – and why changing your profile these days is a must:
Edit details pulled from your social media accounts
On an app like Tinder, you can easily sync your Facebook and Instagram accounts. With that information comes the ability for your profile to absorb personal details like your work and high school photos (you’re different now!).
As Wired recommends, consider modifying any data pulled from your accounts. Even if your name and high school are the only details available, this information can easily be used to find you elsewhere (Linkedin, for example).
Also edit your main photo on your dating app account. By searching for a reverse image, this could be used to find your Facebook profile or other websites where your image appears.
Don’t give your number so fast
We understand that a good conversation on an application leads to a number exchange. Here’s why you shouldn’t give out your number too quickly: Once someone has this information, they can use it to extract your Instagram account. if it is linked to your phone. Unlink your phone number from your Instagram if that’s the case. An area code, on its own, contains identifying information about where you live / have lived, so keep the chat in the app if possible.
People joke that all that matters in dating apps are photos, and that’s pretty much true. But you’re not just judged on a heat scale – people try to see you as a person without reading your bio. A picture says more than you might think about your tastes, your social life, and your view of the world. Here’s what to think about when choosing the perfect shot.
Disable location settings
Some apps deliberately track your position in relation to potential daters. Turn it off in your phone settings, so no one can locate you. Yes, some apps require your location for basic functionality. In this case, set it to a mode in which the location is only used when using the app.
Consolidate your dating identities
Sometimes we have to run a large network which means trying all the apps until we find success. Yes, they could very well increase your chances of finding this one, but consider hitting at least a few.
When you come across the same person on two or three different apps, it’s easy to create credentials through them (if you combine someone’s OkCupid quiz with their respective Hinge account, you practically have an encyclopedia on information about them).
Delete the app
So you met someone! Congratulations, you can enthusiastically delete the app. Unfortunately, it’s never that easy. Many applications, such as Tinder and hinge, require that you delete it in the app first.
Others, like Coffee Meets Bagel, require you to email their customer service to do the deed. Make sure you take the extra steps before you delete the app on your phone, otherwise your digital self will continue to live the single life (and who wants it?)