Does your Tinder connection have an unsavory past? You can now run a background check

(KTLA) — Tinder, the online dating site, is introducing a new tool that lets future Romeos and Juliets do a background check on potential matches.

The enhanced security feature is the result of a partnership between Tinder’s parent, Match Group, and a nonprofit organization called Garbo that provides background checks. Match invested in Garbo last year.

“For too long, women and traditionally marginalized groups have faced many barriers to resources and security,” says Tracey Breeden, Head of Security and Social Advocacy at Match Group.

“Garbo’s thoughtful and innovative consumer background checks will move the industry forward while empowering people with critical information to help them make informed personal safety choices.”

It’s easy to shake your head and wonder how we got to a point where dating services need to help customers weed out criminals, but such precautions seem like a useful step forward in the age of digital connections. Obviously, if someone has a history of appalling behavior – and we’re mostly talking about guys who are violent towards women – you’d want to know that up front.

“We know that the biggest indicator of future abuse or violence is the history of these types of behaviors,” says Kathryn Kosmides, founder of Garbo.

“Whether it’s online dating or the dozens of other ways we meet strangers in today’s digital age, we need to know if we’re potentially putting our safety at risk.”

The new tool is rolling out this week. Each search on Garbo will cost $2.50 plus a processing fee. Tinder will offer two free searches per user, until a total of 500,000 searches have been completed.

Garbo also facilitates (paid) background checks on its own website.

Tinder users are encouraged by the site to report any correspondence that reflects a history of violence.


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