Tinder is making an effort to attempt to make online dating a safer place by allowing users to run criminal background checks before making the next step in real life.
The latest feature is in partnership with Garbo, a background check provider that aims to make public safety information more accessible. According to reports, users will be able to enter their potential date’s name, phone number, or other details to “check for arrests, convictions, and sex offender registry information.”
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“This is just the first step in delivering on our mission to help proactively prevent harm in the digital age,” Garbo founder Kathryn Kosmides said in a statement.
Tinder users will not have access to a potential date’s personal information like address and phone number to prevent stalking, as well as “convictions of financial crimes that are more than seven years in the past as well as for homicides or robberies that took place more than 14 years ago. Such time limits were developed by criminal justice reform advocates to give people who committed crimes a chance to change their behavior,” as Garbo reports state. “The results also don’t mention arrests or convictions for some offenses such as marijuana possession, vandalism, and breaking curfew and loitering laws.”
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Some experts are expressing that the background checks will not be as helpful as the dating app thinks because most people accused of sexual assaults don’t have any priors or interactions with the law.
Only 310 of 1,000 sexual assaults are reported to police, according to the anti-sexual violence organization Rainn. Also, some violent acts may have not reported as self-defense which can make the dating experience still a complicated one.