Feeds

Vodafone shares subscriber info with world+dog

For your convenience

The essential guide to IT transformation

Vodafone has been caught taking liberties with customers' email accounts, and it seems at least some of the customers aren't happy about the practice.

The problem is with the password reminder feature on the “My account” section of the carrier's website. All you have to do is enter the phone number of the person you're interested in. If he's got an online account, Vodafone gladly gives up his email address. The Reg was able to test the feature and it worked as described.

“There is nothing to stop a determined spammer from entering thousands of numbers and getting a long list of email addresses,” Vodafone subscriber Terence Eden writes here. “Nothing to stop a fraudster from sending you an email to an address you only use with Vodafone. Nothing to stop you finding out that your boss’s email is IlikeBigButts@example.com.”

Several Reg readers who have left comments to this article have pointed out that the remind me feature also returns phone numbers and email addresses that correspond to user names. Indeed, a quick test showed it wasn't that hard to guess valid names. Vodafone is so generous, it seems, that it shares details of ex-subscribers as well, according to a comments left by people claiming to have ported phone numbers from Vodafone to a competing carrier.

The flaw is by no means as bad as a similar one found last month on Facebook, which spilled name and pic for all 500 million of its users. But it stems from the same kind of careless thinking.

We wouldn't be surprised to see it fixed in short order. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
6 Obvious Reasons Why Facebook Will Ban This Article (Thank God)
Clampdown on clickbait ... and El Reg is OK with this
So, Apple won't sell cheap kit? Prepare the iOS garden wall WRECKING BALL
It can throw the low cost race if it looks to the cloud
EE fails to apologise for HUGE T-Mobile outage that hit Brits on Friday
Customer: 'Please change your name to occasionally somewhere'
Time Warner Cable customers SQUEAL as US network goes offline
A rude awakening: North Americans greeted with outage drama
We need less U.S. in our WWW – Euro digital chief Steelie Neelie
EC moves to shift status quo at Internet Governance Forum
BT customers face broadband and landline price hikes
Poor punters won't be affected, telecoms giant claims
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
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.
Advanced data protection for your virtualized environments
Find a natural fit for optimizing protection for the often resource-constrained data protection process found in virtual environments.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.