Anti-vaxxers aren’t just bad at protecting themselves from viral illnesses; apparently, some of them are also horrible at protecting themselves from potential computer viruses. Case in point: The infamous anti-vax dating site, Unjected, was hacked by a programmer who found that pretty much anyone who wanted could have taken over as the dating site’s administrator, according to a new exclusive report from The Daily Dot.
Unjected (which is not a word; I looked it up) isn’t new; the “Tinder for anti-vaxxers,” as it’s been called, launched in summer 2021 — and soon after was removed from the Apple App Store for violating COVID rules, Gizmodo reported at the time. But, The Daily Dot noted, it’s been chugging along (albeit on a smaller scale) since then. This month, a programmer known as GeopJr revealed that Unjected’s administrator dashboard was accessible to the public, meaning any of us could have not only accessed its users’ private information, but also made changes to their profiles and even deactivated pages on the site, per The Daily Dot.
To verify that this was true, The Daily Dot created an account of its own. GeopJr was indeed able to regurgitate the email address and username the outlet used, as well as change the wording of a post that The Daily Dot had shared. GeopJr told The Daily Dot that Unjected was probably built without much thought or care, putting its thousands of users in danger of being exposed.
After Unjected users caught wind of the site’s vulnerabilities (The Daily Dot reached out to several people as part of its reporting), co-founder Shelby Thompson assured them and The Daily Dot that the unvaxxed powers that be would fix the issues. But, users continued to report problems after that, and when I last checked, the website still seemed to have some pretty basic glitches: The homepage, for example, featured nine stock images in a row of some dude named Célestin.
Beyond that, Unjected is a portal into the ethos of a group of people who don’t care much for accuracy or exercising due diligence. In an FAQ section on the site, the founders claim that, “After slander in the media, we have grown to an ever multiplying 110,000 members in 85 different countries” — meanwhile, The Daily Dot found that the site only actually has about 3,500 registered emails.
Unjected also touts its “features to help you find love with mRNA free partners,” but guess what boo? All humans are born with mRNA. Finally, the website says it provides “mRNA free blood directories & fertility directories to protect the integrity of the population” which, again, makes no sense, because unless you’re a plastic chair from IKEA, you already have mRNA in every single one of your cells.
It’s certainly concerning to see that Unjected has no regard for the truth and is perfectly comfortable telling easily debunked lies to its users. To me, it’s a larger testament to the Post-Truth Era we’re still very much living through. And although I’m not saying anyone should do anything illicit to Unjected, I will point out that it’s really hard to fix every bug on a website overnight — so if its users are even a little bit more concerned about protecting their personal information than they are about their health, they might want to proceed with caution.