Bumble

Warning: *privacy not included with this product

Bumble

Review date: 02/07/2021

Every dating app has a thing. Bumble's thing is only women can make the first move in the app to contact a man (for users looking for someone of the same gender, anyone can make the first move). Bumble says their goal is to shake up the gender norms and empower women to make the first move. Which can be a breath of fresh air in the straight dating app world where women are constantly bombarded with "Hey" as an opening line (come on guys, do better!). Founded by a former Tinder employee and launched in 2014, Bumble now has over 100 million users worldwide. This dating app lets users sign up with Facebook or their phone number (they added the phone number options back in 2018 following Facebook's Cambridge Analytica scandal). All profile information on Bumble is public, so if you sign up with Facebook be aware it could pull your personal info from there and make it open to all users.

What could happen if something goes wrong

Bumble says they want to provide a safe dating space, especially for women. They even use artificial intelligence to try and moderate lewd images, body shaming, transphobic, homophobic, and racist comments shared on the site. Good for them! Unfortunately, they have some work to do to protect the privacy and security of all the users on their app. In November 2020, researchers found a security bug in Bumble that exposed the personal information of their nearly 100 millions users. All that really personal info, like political leanings, weight, the type of person a user was looking for, and even location were open to any attacker with a little technical know how. We'll say it again, no matter what a company's privacy policy says, any personal information you share with them online is potentially vulnerable and could be used by bad people for bad purposes. We are glad to see that in 2018, Bumble did stop requiring users to sign in through Facebook. Now users also have the option to sign in with their phone number. Which is good because according to Bumble's privacy policy, if you log into the app using your Facebook account you authorize them to access pretty much everything on Facebook -- friends list, current location, photos, friends you have in common with other people on Bumble, the list goes on. So please remember, when you connect a social media account like Facebook to Bumble, both Facebook and Bumble now potentially collect more information together. That's why we recommend users don't link your dating app to Facebook, use your phone number instead. Because really, you don't need to share all your personal info with Facebook, and then Bumble, and then Bumble may share more with Facebook and then it all gets exposed and soon the world knows where you live, who you think is hot, and how much money you make. That might be a recipe for a good date...it's also potentially a recipe for disaster.

Privacy

Can it snoop on me?

Camera

Device: N/A

App: Yes

Microphone

Device: N/A

App: Yes

Tracks Location

Device: N/A

App: Yes

What is required to sign up?

What data does it collect?

How does it use this data?

Bumble's Privacy Policy, last updated in August 2020, claims that Bumble does not sell user data and has not done so in the previous 12 months. However, it is unclear whether the company has sold data prior to Aug 2019 or since Aug 2020. Bumble shares users' personal information such as demographic data and geolocation with third parties for targeted advertising. Bumble also shares non-personal, aggregated data with third-parties for purposes such as research and analysis.

How can you control your data?

Users can request a copy of their personal data on Bumble, as well as request for their data to be deleted by emailing [email protected]

What is the company’s known track record for protecting users’ data?

Needs Improvement

Bumble's systems had serious security flaws that left personal information of users exposed in Novemeber 2020.

Can this product be used offline?

No

User friendly privacy information?

No

The privacy policy language is relatively user-friendly. However, their privacy policy isn't totally clear on how they are sharing your data.

Links to privacy information

Security

Does this product meet our Minimum Security Standards?

No

Encryption

Can’t determine

We couldn't find anywhere that shows Bumble explicitly uses encryption to protect all users' personal and communications. They did not respond to our requests for more information so we are unable to tell if they use encryption or not.

Strong password

Not applicable

Password isn't requires as login happens either via phone or third-party

Security updates

Yes

Manages vulnerabilities

Yes

Bounty Program. https://bumble.com/contact-us

Privacy policy

Yes

Artificial Intelligence

Does the product use AI?

Yes

Does the AI use your personal data to make decisions about you?

Yes

Does the company allow users to see how the AI works?

No

Bumble uses AI for moderation purposes, including detecting inappropriate images as well as body shaming language, including fat-phobic, ableist, racist, colorist, homophobic or transphobic remarks. Bumble uses automated decisions and moderators to block accounts as part of its moderation procedures.

Company contact info

Phone Number

No

Live Chat

No

Email

in app

Twitter

@bumble

Updates

How to protect yourself from dating app data breaches
ProtonVPN
Dating apps are now as much a part of modern courtship as going to the movies or buying flowers. But dating apps, like Tinder, Grindr, or Bumble, present significant privacy risks. This Valentine’s Day, take some time to secure your data to avoid falling victim to a Tinder scammer.
Dating Site Bumble Leaves Swipes Unsecured for 100M Users
Threat Post
Bumble fumble: An API bug exposed personal information of users like political leanings, astrological signs, education, and even height and weight, and their distance away in miles.
Bumble Vulnerabilities Put Facebook Likes, Locations And Pictures Of 95 Million Daters At Risk
Forbes
Bumble prides itself on being one of the more ethically-minded dating apps. But is it doing enough to protect the private data of its 95 million users? In some ways, not so much, according to research shown to Forbes ahead of its public release.
Bumble’s algorithm will now report you for body-shaming
The Next Web
Bumble has stepped up its efforts to provide a safe dating space for users by banning body-shaming on the app. The app will use an algorithm to flag derogatory comments about someone’s appearance.
Bumble bugs could have exposed personal data of all users
We Live Security
Security vulnerabilities in Bumble, one of today’s most popular dating apps, could have exposed the personal information of its entire, almost 100 million-strong, user-base.
Bumble will allow users to log in without Facebook
The Verge
In response to recent concerns about Facebook’s handling of user data, Bumble has announced it will drop its Facebook login requirement for users. The dating app will allow users to log in and register for an account using a phone number beginning tomorrow, according to a new report from Wired.
Bumble Vulnerabilities Put Facebook Likes, Locations And Pictures Of 95 Million Daters At Risk
Forbes
Bumble prides itself on being one of the more ethically-minded dating apps. But is it doing enough to protect the private data of its 95 million users? In some ways, not so much, according to research shown to Forbes ahead of its public release.

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