Match Group Announces Garbo Partnership and Introduces Background Checks

Match Group has announced a seven-figure investment into Garbo, and a resulting partnership that will allows users to carry out a background check on a potential date.

The feature will be available on Tinder “later this year” before a following roll out on other Match Group-owned apps.

Garbo is a non-profit that runs background checks on people with only their first name and phone number, or full name. This means dating users will be able to vet their matches with details like their arrest record or history of violence.

It collects “public records and reports of violence or abuse, including arrests, convictions, restraining orders, harassment, and other violent crimes”, and its website says it accepts manually submitted “police report(s), order(s) of protection / restraining orders, and other legal documents that report abuse, harassment, or other crimes”.

However, in a blog post published last month, Garbo said it won’t publicise drug possession charges in order to take an “active stance toward equity”.

Tinder users will be required to pay to complete background checks, but Match is working with Garbo to figure out how to price them so they’re accessible to most users. It’s unclear whether this will be a one-off fee or tied into existing subscription tiers.

The team will begin testing and building out capabilities for Garbo on Tinder in the coming months, and once Garbo is integrated into Tinder, other Match Group US brands.

Tracey Breeden, Head of Safety and Social Advocacy for the Match Group, said in a statement: “For far too long women and marginalised groups in all corners of the world have faced many barriers to resources and safety. We recognise corporations can play a key role in helping remove those barriers with technology and true collaboration rooted in action.

“In partnership with Match Group, Garbo’s thoughtful and groundbreaking consumer background check will enable and empower users with information, helping create equitable pathways to safer connections and online communities across tech.”

Read more here.