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Twitter cracks down on Grindr ads amid privacy concerns

Audrey Conklin

Twitter on Tuesday suspended Grindr, a dating app for gay singles, from its ad service amid privacy concerns.

The concerns come after a report called "Out of Control" by the Consumer Council of Norway found that dating apps like Tinder, OkCupid and Grindr -- which is owned by Chinese mobile gaming firm Beijing Kunlun Tech Co. -- were sharing users' intimate personal data such as sexual orientation, age and location with advertisers.

The social media site told FOX Business it is "currently investigating this issue to understand the sufficiency of Grindr's consent mechanism."

Twitter said Grindr was the only app suspended due to its association with Twitter's ad service, MoPub.

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Grindr did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The Consumer Council's report highlights a continued lack of trust between apps and their users due to a lack of transparency regarding how and why data is shared with third parties to target custom advertising for users.

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Facebook came under fire for this reason in 2017 after Cambridge Analytica, an advertising firm hired by the Trump campaign, was caught collecting user data since 2014 and using it to target personalized political ads ahead of the 2016 U.S. presidential election -- a practice many users were unaware of.

This type of data sharing through apps "shows an adtech industry fuelled by collecting as much data as possible in order to combine, analyze and use it to influence behavior," the New York Times wrote at the time.

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