Illinoisans looking to score a date online could soon see a reminder. A bill under consideration in Springfield would require online dating sites to disclose if they conduct criminal background checks. State Rep. Michelle Mussman (D-Schaumburg) says despite the resistance to internet regulations, the bill is not overreaching.
“Because it is so broad – and we love that it is so very, very free – but at the same time there are real people who are using this and there are real people who are putting themselves on the line and at some point the novelty wears off and you need to have to start following rules like everyone else,” Mussman says.
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New Jersey and Texas already have similar laws and New York requires a reminder highlighting safety tips.
Mussman says 30 percent of global internet users now subscribe to online dating sites. That means the need to inform and protect users is growing, she says. “I don’t think the average user knows that they can go to the sex offender online registry or the online murder database. I don’t think it occurs to them that they could access that,” Mussman says.
The bill passed the House Consumer Protection Committee and is on its way to the full House for a vote.