The NSA Is Watching Your Online Dating Profile

unsplash1Are you a match? From an NPR piece on surveillance, corporations and the government absorbing data from dating sites in order to reveal the real you:

Examples from the series include online dating sites, like OKCupid.com. The report shows how profile questions on the site about things like drug use, religious beliefs and more were transmitted to a data tracking company, along with the user’s IP address.

When you log in with a username and password to sites like Gmail, Amazon or OKCupid, your behavior can be linked to your real name or email address. Software privacy specialist Ashkan Soltani said personally identifying information also can unintentionally “leak” to third parties, even if companies say they have no need for such data; it’s not clear what happens to the information once it falls into their hands.

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  • David Thompson

    Isn’t it fairly common practice for people to put misleading info on a dating site? Seems like a poor place to discover “the real you”

    • Anarchy Pony

      Generally it’s more about tracking associations.

  • Anarchy Pony

    In other shocking news, birds fly and fish swim.

  • emperorreagan

    If they’d like to send me a survey, I’ll just go ahead and detail my political and religious persuasion for them so I can get in the good re-education camp.

    • Calypso_1

      It’s called FAFSA.

  • InfvoCuernos

    Whaaaat?!?! You mean that you should be careful of what you post online because “Big Brother” is watching? If it sounds like my sarcasm is cliche, then you should hear how cliche this article sounds. next thing, we’ll be seeing articles on how the govt. is using lists of people who signed up for medicinal marijuana, and how they’re manipulating the media to gain favor for their latest military adventure.

    • alizardx

      Ask any leader of the current East German government if an intrusive surveillance state is a guarantee of indefinite power.

      For the sake of irony, I’ve heard that some former STASI people are now working for the US.

    • http://yhoo.it/michaelwaisjr MichaelWaisJr

      That reminds me of one reason why I hate “High Times”. They’re hypocrites because they have passed along subscriber names and addresses ever since the government claimed they were distributing “obscene” or “illicit” material in their magazine. I don’t care what people do in the privacy of their own home that doesn’t directly harm anybody else, but it’s just so awful how that publication claims to be so trendy and avant-garde and hip, but they actually send off the information of the young people who subscribe to this magazine and who they gear their image towards so that THOSE people who are ignorant of the scrutiny the publication’s under can be put even further through a microscope. That’s why I absolutely hate that publication.

      As far as the internet goes, it’s not private at all and I don’t think anyone really needs a reminder about that. I just cope with it by imagining that Mark Zuckerberg is constantly masturbating to my picture and then I don’t care that the world wide web has become as discreet as anyone doing a live-stream of one’s colonoscopy and showing it to the world.

      • Bruteloop

        High Times is a constant reminder how absurd weed smokers are when they claim the practice is enlightening or increases awareness or…all the other stuff. Like a number of things, it does on occasion and it very much does not. Often.

        • http://yhoo.it/michaelwaisjr MichaelWaisJr

          Meh, I don’t care what people do on their own private time. I just hate a subscription that flaunts personalities like Dave Navarro, Jonathan Davis, and Allen Ginsberg and says, “Hey, look at us. We’re so progressive,” and then goes and hypocritically sells or gives away subscriber information to the government without subscriber knowledge or consent. (The book “Privacy Poachers” from Loompanics publishers has more about this controversy, if you’re curious to read up about it.) It would almost be more dignified if they just had boring technical marijuana landscaping articles, about 99% text without glossy pictures or ads, and had language that would imply the magazine is intended for 75 year old educated men than to attract the same demographic they’re betraying. A lot of these college kids who are up to 25 years old have no idea that their subscription to the magazine is putting them on that list- NOR do they know that the motivation for the magazine’s advertising is to create a list so that the publication can sell it or give it away to the government and stay in business. The hypocritical turn-coat motives for the “High Times” advertising appalls me.

  • atlanticus

    You know…they’re like, totally reading Disqus, too… *waves* “Hi y’all”…

  • Haystack

    Sounds like the setup for a new romantic comedy. “At first, the NSA knew only fear, but when it started spying on OKCupid, it learned to love…”

    • Ted Heistman

      Or it might learn narcissism and desperation….

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