The consumer protection agency Consumentenbond reports that five popular dating apps – 50Plusmatch, Happn, Parship, Paiq and Tinder – violate AVG, the Dutch General Data Protection Regulation.

In a cookie scan of 10 dating platforms, the aforenamed five placed advertising cookies before visitors had given permission, resulting in personal data ending up with commercial third parties.

Additionally, only one of the ten studied sites – E-Matching – appeared to have “a complete and correct privacy statement.” Consumentenbond said the privacy statements of the remaining nine dating apps “are too vague about what data they collect or what they do with it.”

Director of Consumers Association Sandra Molenaar says, “Dating sites process a lot of sensitive information and it is therefore worrying that they do not take extra care with the privacy of their visitors.” She adds that the AVG was introduced a year and a half ago, so companies have had ample time to comply with the law.

Consumentenbond has reported the violations to both the Dutch Data Protection Authority and the Consumer and Market Authority. They add that all the surveyed sites received the results of the study and “Happn, Paiq, Pepper and 50Plusmatch have announced that they will adjust their cookie policy and/or privacy statement.”

Consumentenbond plans to repeat its investigation “in the short term to check whether the dating sites keep their promises.”