New dating app for Trump supporters exposes users’ data on launch day
App creator Emily Moreno, a former campaign aide for Marco Rubio (R-Florida), launched the app because she felt Trump supporters were getting the short end of the stick in the dating game.
“Support for the president has become a dealbreaker instead of an icebreaker,” she said. Moreno was inspired to create the app after hearing the story of a Trump supporter whose date ditched him after Googling his name and discovering his political leanings.
I made a small proof of concept to show how the database of the Donald Daters app is vulnerable. With this POC I can:— Elliot Alderson (@fs0c131y) October 15, 2018
- see all private messages
- see all user info
- delete what I want: a message, an user, the all database, ... pic.twitter.com/7doErhzYdY
The new app ran into problems almost at the start, however. A French security researcher Robert Baptiste, going by the name ‘Elliot Alderson’ (a character from the TV show ‘Mr Robot’) has reportedly managed to download the entire DonaldDaters user database – including names, profile photos, private messages, even device type – because of a public Firebase data repository, according to TechCrunch.
DonaldDaters app coming soon pic.twitter.com/xdnxO8njI1— DonaldDaters (@DonaldDaters) September 13, 2018
Alderson also claimed to have gained access to account tokens that would allow him to take over users’ accounts. The data has since been made private and it is not known whether anyone else took advantage of the security flaw.
There’s clearly a market for conservative dating apps – more than 1,600 users had already signed up for DonaldDaters when the security flaw was reported. The app’s launch was favorably covered by the Daily Mail and Fox, perhaps because one of the app’s promotional graphics read “Fox News and chill.”
A survey released last year by dating app Tinder revealed that 71 percent of dating app users consider political differences to be a “dealbreaker” in a potential match, and stories of Trump supporters facing rejection on dating apps are legion.
A previous Trump-themed dating app met with its own misfortunes. TrumpDating came under scrutiny when a Greensboro, NC paper pointed out the man in the couple featured on the app’s website was a convicted sex offender.
Like this story? Share it with a friend!