U.S. Government Declares Grindr a National Security Risk

March 27, 2019, 4:43 PM UTC
Millions use Dating Apps
The logo of the dating app Grindr is seen on a mobile screen and a laptop screen. Grindr is a dating app for gay, bi, pan and curious men. Several Millions use Dating Apps every day. (Photo by Alexander Pohl/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
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Grindr, one of the most popular dating apps with the LGBTQ community, is up for sale after a U.S. government panel declared it a national security risk.

A report from Reuters says Chinese gaming company Beijing Kunlun Tech Co Ltd. decided to sell the app, which it’s owned for three years, after learning about the designation from the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States.

It’s unclear what the committee’s concerns were, but U.S. officials have been increasingly wary of Chinese-owned companies handling extensive amounts of personal data for Americans, especially if military or government personnel might use those products or services.

Grindr had already been under public scrutiny after revelations last year that it was sharing the HIV status of users without their permission.

The crackdown is the latest in a series of moves against Chinese businesses by the Trump administration, which is already seeking to ban all telecom equipment from Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd. The company is suing to block that action.

Beijing Kunlun’s decision to sell will likely mean an end, at least temporarily, to the planned IPO at Grindr. The group bought its stake in the company in 2016 for $93 million and took full ownership last year. The app, as of 2016, boasted some 27 million users as of last year.