“The issues the FTC is focusing on have either been taken grossly out of context or permanently eliminated by Match. In several instances, the FTC is wildly overstating the impact of fraudulent accounts.”
The FTC said some users had purchased subscriptions to see the details of the users.
“We believe that Match.com conned people into paying for subscriptions via messages the company knew were from scammers,” Andrew Smith, director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection, said in a statement.
“Online dating services obviously shouldn’t be using romance scammers as a way to fatten their bottom line.”
In its most recent quarterly report, Match said that, in August 2019, the FTC referred claims against it to the U.S. Department of Justice and that it believed they were without merit.
Shares of Match Group fell as much as 6 per cent, while those of InterActiveCorp dropped nearly 4 per cent, in response to the news.
Online dating services obviously shouldn’t be using romance scammers as a way to fatten their bottom line.
FTC’s Andrew Smith
The FTC also said consumers who considered purchasing a Match.com subscription generally were unaware that as many as 25 per cent to 30 per cent of Match.com members who register each day are using it to perpetrate phishing schemes and extortion scams.
The FTC alleges that millions of contacts that generated Match’s “You caught his eye” notices came from accounts the company had already flagged as likely to be fraudulent.
The agency alleged that the company also made it difficult for consumers to cancel their subscriptions.
Reuters with staff reporter