Feeds

Verizon chief exec pnked in privacy prank

'Can you hear me now?'

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

Verizon chief exec Ivan Seidenberg has been confronted with a comedian wielding a loudhailer and amplifier in a protest about privacy.

John Hargrave of comedy site Zug.com tracked down Seidenberg's phone number and home address before paying the telecoms boss a raucous visit, protesting how easy mobile telco firms made it to obtain such information about their subscribers. Hargrave was angry at how US mobile phone companies leak personal information, which often ends up in the hands of unscrupulous data brokers.

Hargrave would have visited Randall Stephenson, chief exec of AT&T and Dan Hesse, chief exec of Sprint Nextel as well but was thwarted because both names were too commonplace.

"Unfortunately, Stephenson and Hesse had common names, so I couldn't find them in the huge pile of unlisted numbers that came back" from a search of a "free cell phone records" site, Hargrave explains

No matter, as the Seidenberg prank was amusing in itself and illustrated the serious point that it is easy to get cell phone name and address details in the US, even where these apply to unlisted numbers.

During the prank, Hargrave stood outside Seidenberg's property and yelled: "I'm here on behalf of Verizon customers. PLEASE DO A BETTER JOB PROTECTING YOUR CUSTOMERS' CELL PHONE RECORDS! Everyone has the right to privacy, including you Ivan! When we don't have privacy, then freaks with bullhorns start showing up on our front lawn."

"Can you hear me now," he concluded, in a parody of a Verizon advertising slogan.

The protest was curtailed after Seidenberg's neighbour and dog approached Hargrave, prompting the comic to clear up his equipment and scarper, as recorded in a video posted on (where else) YouTube, below. ®

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
Trying to sell your house? It'd better have KILLER mobile coverage
More NB than transport links to next-gen buyers - study
iWallet: No BONKING PLEASE, we're Apple
BLE-ding iPhones, not NFC bonkers, will drive trend - marketeers
Auntie remains MYSTIFIED by that weekend BBC iPlayer and website outage
Still doing 'forensics' on the caching layer – Beeb digi wonk
Scotland's BIG question: Will independence cost me my broadband?
They can take our lives, but they'll never take our SPECTRUM
NBN Co adds apartments to FTTP rollout
Commercial trial locations to go live in September
Samsung Z Tizen OS mobe is post-phoned – this time for good?
Russian launch for Sammy's non-droid knocked back
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Maximize storage efficiency across the enterprise
The HP StoreOnce backup solution offers highly flexible, centrally managed, and highly efficient data protection for any enterprise.