Synack Safety Studies Advisory: Grindr Cellular Phone Software Geolocation Ideas Disclosure

Synack at first stated two ideas disclosure weaknesses to Grindr in March 2014. On August 16, 2014 exploit information on among two stated vulnerabilities happened to be published on Pastebin by an anonymous individual that on their own identified the vulnerability through the Grindr app. The second weakness has become calmly patched by Grindr. During Synack’s investigation, many other problems comprise uncovered which are not weaknesses but have protection implications.

As being the unpatched vulnerability is public where are actually unconfirmed research of homosexual everyone becoming recognized by way of the Egyptian authorities with this vulnerability, Synack is actually publishing these Safeguards Advisory making sure that Grindr users is totally well informed of these danger along with influence in this issues with their privateness and physical protection.


Synack specialists uncovered two weaknesses permitting an opponent to keep track of really all Grindr user’s venues in real-time. The main vulnerability let an assailant to watch a user’s general locality down to the for the foot, and in addition observe their own fluctuations by and by. This is certainly tough, and so an increased amount of precision ought not to be issued pentecostal dating online to an anonymous assailant. The next vulnerability recognized within the Grindr application would always shown a user’s location no matter if an individual decided regarding location-sharing into the application’s style.

an evidence of principle originated to show the capability at a city-scale amount; through info study was achievable to ascertain owners’ identities together with take a look at pattern of living (home and services stores). It should be mentioned the attacker can interact anonymously aided by the server-side API; getting the app or produce a user levels is not needed extraordinary if not completely of the APIs.

Any time mixed with some other profile expertise instance a person account photo, social media linked to a Grindr membership and various user offered facts, a user’s (potentially hidden) name could easily be expose. This is exceptionally burdensome for Grindr consumers that prefer to maintain their house or operate area or private identity individual, just opting to operate the Grindr software at specific times.

During susceptability study and disclosure no person Grindr users had been on purpose or unintentionally identified. All facts logged has been irrecoverably wrecked. The objective of this research was not to distinguish Grindr people but helping shield those which desire to stay exclusive.

Grindr is a well-liked social networking application for homosexual and bisexual men, with a self-reported four million account in 192 region.

CVE identification document: Zero allocated.

The extent of CVE is restricted to software conditions that is often fixed on the personal computers or systems subject to buyers. However the weakness is available because crucial Grindr servers will provide info which can be used in trilateration problems. Dealing with this weakness demands altering Grindr servers and/or technique design.

Vulnerability 1: Grindr enables users to look at the time away these include from other owners. Unfortunately, this comparative area information is constantly reported to your maximum accurate, (commonly as a result of the sub-foot amount of clarity). An assailant can control the Grindr private API to disclose a user’s length in relation to haphazard coordinates supplied by the attacker. Thanks to a lack of API price restricting, the opponent can use an iterative way and take advantage of criterion trilateration calculations to gauge a user’s specific locality coordinates in realtime.

Grindr features circulated an announcement indicating this isn’t a weakness but an attribute of the program.

Vulnerability 2: The Grindr application broadcast user venue information even though a user elected past revealing inside program configurations. This place reports was not revealed aesthetically along with other Grindr owners but had been transferred, letting an attacker to trace (via weakness no. 1) any customer. That vulnerability had been silently repaired by Grindr in May 2014, owners’ that opt off revealing their own place are unable to feel monitored.

Synack analysts additionally exposed added issues that possess protection ramifications. While these are not vulnerabilities, in conjunction with the 1st weakness above they could further undermine the convenience regarding the Grindr owners.

1. The user’s real location was described to Grindr’s machines, even though “show range” happens to be handicapped through consumer. While discussing one’s locality is essential with the functions of this app (that is complete over SSL), stating this facts to this type of a high level of accurate to a 3rd party (in other words. Grindr) could be a privacy problem for consumers.

2. The iOS Grindr app will not pin SSL vouchers. SSL pinning is definitely extra covering of protection that guarantees a customer will only correspond with a well-defined pair of computers. Considering that the Grindr apple’s ios software is not fed SSL pinning, a man-in-the-middle challenge might happen. If an opponent has a compromised core document, or can coerce a user to put in a certificate (case in point by mailing you with an attached certificate) the link might hijacked together with the user’s specific venue could be unveiled.


Synack proposes that Grindr associates delete and stop utilization of the Grindr software before the merchant possess resolved the very first vulnerability detail by detail with this consultative.

Mitigations: none

Workarounds: turn venue companies “show travel time” for Grindr software. Be aware that that should influence program functionality with the goal of the applying and does not wholly get rid of the likelihood of critical information disclosure given that the user’s appropriate locality is still becoming carried to Grindr as well as the consumer will display as a ‘nearby’ consumer to other people.


Account: the first vulnerabilities happened to be discovered by Colby Moore. Repeat exploration plus the breakthrough of future problems would be executed in combination with Patrick Wardle. Both Colby and Patrick become Synack personnel.

Synack let enterprises to utilize snobs researchers utilizing the most existing techniques in a reliable, confirmed style to keep protection weaknesses from becoming business danger. Synack’s option would be the dynamic, on-demand part of the security structure.

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