Russia orders Tinder

The dating app has been included in a fresh list of internet services requiring Russian intelligence agencies to provide user data on demand.

MOSCOW (AP) -Russia requires the Tinder dating app to pass on information about its users— including emails— to domestic intelligence organizations, part of the country’s growing crackdown on online liberties.

The communications regulator said Monday that Tinder was included in a list of internet facilities working in Russia requiring Russian officials, including the FSB security agency, to provide user information on demand.

Tinder, an app where individuals searching for dates swipe left or right on other users ‘ profiles to dismiss or accept them, will have to collaborate with Russian officials or face the nation being totally blocked. The rule would extend to the information of any user passing through Russian servers, including emails on the app to other individuals.

Tinder, based in West Hollywood, California, said Monday that he registered to comply with the Russian authorities but added that he “didn’t hand over any data to his government,” but the company didn’t say if it was going to do so in the future.

Tinder, an app where people looking for dates swipe left or right on the profiles of other customers to reject or acknowledge them, will have to work with Russian authorities or face the country being completely blocked. The rule would apply to any user’s data that passes through Russian servers, including messages to other people on the app.

Tinder, headquartered in West Hollywood, California, said Monday that he enrolled to comply with the Russian authorities but added that he “did not hand over any information to his government,” but the firm did not say if it would do so in the future.

It is still accessible in Russia, despite the effort by the authorities to block Telegram.LinkedIn’s social network also attempted to withstand, but was less lucky. It declined to comply with criteria to store private information on Russian people on Russia’s servers. A tribunal ordered the blocking of LinkedIn in 2016.

There are a total of 175 internet facilities on the list requiring them to provide Russian officials with user data. Most of them are tiny Russian regions websites.
The list does not include popular messaging facilities like WhatsApp or Facebook Messenger.

Russian officials claim this is because law enforcement agencies have not approached them for information from specific applications, but it is commonly understood that blocking Facebook and its popular applications such as WhatsApp or Instagram would be a major move for regulators.

Zello, a voice messaging app popular with Russian truck drivers, was one of the latest victims of the watchdog list. Zello was an significant instrument for mobilizing truck drivers in 2015 to protest a new toll scheme.

After almost a year of efforts to block the app, last year in Russia Zello became inaccessible.


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