Saturday, September 26, 2009

Looks like things are still like what they used to be!

Last Wednesday, I tried to renew my subscription to a consumer protection magazine I've been reading for the last 11 years. I don't know how many subscribers it has, but it must not be beyond 100 or 200K so it's fair to expect their web services to be limited. Yet, they offered the possibility of renewing over the internet, so sure, I decided to save some carbon dioxide and use their web interface instead of snail mail.

Wrong idea. By following their subscription process, I ended up in the profile of another customer and saw his personal info. I didn't do any effort to do get there, and by that I really mean NONE. It just popped up in my browser. Looks like our sessions got mixed up. Man, even something using the infamous formmail would have given me a better sense of security! Looks like things are still like what they used to be.

There was no credit card info, but enough data to try doing a fraudulent phone call since I not only knew the guy's birth year, but also his address, phone number, and the pinnacle of it all: that he was subscribed to a highly respected magazine, along with the expiration date of his subscription... Social engineering anybody? Sure, many people put all this on display on facebook, but I'm note sure that customer would have liked me calling him up.

While a mom-and-pop operation could be a little more excusable, I'm surprised considering the nature of that publication that such a thing could happen. I left them an e-mail with a screenshot and sure hope they'll fix this soon. We're not in 1995; we're in 2009, and a bug like this shouldn't have gone unnoticed. And no, two business days later, I didn't get any reply to my mail whatsoever.

Needless to say I decided to delete all information in my profile... and send everything through the mail.


No comments: