Tacoma woman's picture pops up on 'rude' Internet dating site

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by JESSE JONES / KING 5 News

Bio | Email | Follow: @getjesse

KING5.com

Posted on May 10, 2012 at 11:24 PM

Updated Friday, May 11 at 10:49 AM

Dating can be tough, especially if like Tracy, you're looking for a fresh start.
 
“It's really hard to meet up with people that you're compatible with,” said Tracy.
 
Tracy, who doesn't want to make her last name public, decided to give Internet dating a shot and signed up on a reputable site. 
 
“I wanted to find one that I could trust and I knew it was secure,” she said.
 
It worked. She met someone within a month. So she canceled her membership. But her information didn't disappear. In fact, it showed up on a site she would never have picked.
 
“It was my face was on there - my exact profile. And I was the premier member of the day or the week," she said.
 
The dating site is called Rudefinder. And it's more than rude, it's crude. So much so, we can't show most of it on television.
 
“That's the first time I've ever seen anything like that so for my face to be on there was humiliating," Tracy said. 
 
So Tracy contacted London-based Rudefinder.com the only way possible: email. She demanded they remove her information. And she got no response, and at last check her information is still there.
 
Christopher Budd helps clients deal with Internet security and privacy issues. He says sites like Rudefinder lure people to join by creating fake profiles with information copied from other public websites.
 
“There's just no way for that site to know that this is not someone that is interested in dating. It's actually someone in some country that's looking to screen scrape profile information," said Budd.
 
The best way to protect yourself is limit the information you make public, especially if you are a single mother.
 
Also, create a special email account for dating sites. This will keep some of your information private and limit any spam.
 
“You don't want to put information up there that can lead someone to your doorstep. We've heard other stories of people using online dating sites to target single mothers and go after their kids," Budd said.
 
Tracy just wants the site shut down.

“What scares me is I don't know how many other sites could possibly be doing the same thing.”

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