Has your dating profile been sold to the highest bidder?
Dating profiles are a murky business at the best of times, with men and women announcing their loneliness for all to see, while simultaneously trying to pass off the idea that they're actually rather charming, interesting and not-at-all sat in their pants every night, watching boxsets and picking Dorito crumbs out of their fat-rolls.
Well, on top of all those rejections, fruitless wanks and desperate explanations that Honestly, I'm Not A Creep, Not Like Those Others, it seems that your whole profiles may well be getting sold on.
Probably including those ghastly nude photo attachments.
The Information Commissioner's Office (ICO), the data protection watchdog, is investigating the sale of 10,000 online dating profiles which could be "a significant breach of data protection principles”.
The data was sold by Usdate which includes photos, names, email addresses, dates of birth and details of sexual orientation. Interestingly, one of the profiles belonged to a member of the House of Lords, which was probably the most sordid thing on the internet.
Simon Entwisle, director of operations at the ICO, said it is a breach of data protection law if someone sells your information without consent and if the information is inaccurate: "If you're talking about significant numbers of names, that's a significant breach of the data protection principles potentially. It’s concerning to see that there appear to be sites which, as a matter of course, are falling far short of the legal standards for ensuring information is accurate and up to date.”
As a result of this, and the generally vague t&cs that surround most websites, the investigation is now looking at eHarmony, match.com, Cupid and Global Personals to see if there is anything afoot there.