Popular dating app Tinder is rolling out a series of new safety features including a panic button, emergency assistance, location tracking, and photo verification.
The features are designed to address longstanding safety concerns among Tinder users, giving them the option to alert authorities if a bad date turns ugly.
The updates will only be available in the US starting from January 28. The plan is presumably to test the new features in the US before offering them worldwide.
The core of the new security update is the Noonlight system. The feature will allow users to input information about where and when they are going and with whom. The app tracks them throughout the date and users can hit the panic button if they need to alert emergency services.
Another important new addition, photo verification, is aimed at curtailing the rise of “catfishing” – fake online personas created for the purpose of luring someone into a date. This new safety measure means that user profile photos will be verified by a human-assisted AI.
Tinder’s parent company, Match Group, hopes that the updates will address negative feedback about its perceived lack of security features, following several sexual assaults that were made possible by the platform.