What the Tech: Stud or Dud App

A dating app designed to help people learn more about the person they're going out with is also a little creepy for people who aren't on the dating scene.

"Stud or Dud" is a free background check within an app for the iPhone.

"We built it essentially to complement online dating sites and apps that are out there today," said Stud or Dud president Amber Higgins. "You're out there right? And your meeting strangers, so why not protect yourself, kind of confirm your peace of mind that this person is who they say they are," she said.

Here's how the app works:
Enter in a person's name or telephone number. The app is location based and if you grant it permission to know your location, only people nearby who match the name or number will pop up on screen.

The app will display their legal name, first few digits of their phone number (Higgins told me they decided not to give away a person's entire phone number). It will also show a list of publicly available information such as home ownership, where the home is, how much they paid for the house and whether there's a lien on it. Criminal history, what they were charged with and how the case was settled, any bankruptcy's they might have filed, and a list of other information if it is available along with the app's guess that they're married or 'single and ready to mingle'.

"There is no invasion of privacy in my mind because you can go online and you can look up this information anywhere. We just packaged it in app form, free of charge specifically targeting online dating," Higgins said. "You could go down to your local courthouse and find this information. It's pretty prevalent on the web today." Which is all true.

"You do have to use their name or phone number. You do need their name, or at a minimum their last name," says Higgins. "So if you're at a bar, it is location based, you can say I only want to search for people in my nearby location."

Stud or Dud does offer an 'opt out' option for anyone who doesn't want their name or information listed and searchable within the app. For that you'll need to go to the website www.studordud.com.

However, that will not remove your information from the publicly available data that is on file at the courthouse or on online databases.


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