Feeds

Child protection website insecurity fixed

Abuse report page was unencrypted

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

A member of the public was shocked to find that links to a web page used to report incidents of suspected child abuse to the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre were insecure.

Concerned parties visiting a confidential report abuse webpage on CEOP's webpage from either Facebook or Google were directed to an unencrypted page, before being redirected onto a page with a secure SSL link – if users actually decided to file a report.

The oversight meant that search queries or other actions performed on CEOP's landing page were open to eavesdropping because they were sent in the clear.

There is no evidence that any such eavesdropping actually happened, however. CEOP said that the security shortcoming with its site, which it downplayed, has now been resolved.

In a statement, CEOP's chief exec, Peter Davies, said: “The risk was a hypothetical one and there is no evidence to suggest anyone's details have been jeopardised.

"We thank the member of the public who brought this issue to our attention and have rectified the problem, so people can continue to report any concerns they have to us, with the reassurance that their report will remain secure."

The Information Commissioner's Office confirmed that its is looking into the incident.

An ICO spokesperson said: "We are making enquiries into the circumstances of this alleged breach of the Data Protection Act before deciding what action, if any, needs to be taken."

CEOP is a specialised police agency, set up in 2006, that leads the UK's fight against child abuse. It also runs various education programmes aimed at making children aware of the dangers posed by paedophiles who attempt to meet children online, for example. CEOP lobbied for Facebook to put a panic button on its website.

Jim Gamble, the former head of CEOP and an outspoken advocate of the Facebook panic button, resigned last year over government plans to merge the agency with a new National Crime Agency, due to commence operations in 2013. ®

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
Facebook pays INFINITELY MORE UK corp tax than in 2012
Thanks for the £3k, Zuck. Doh! you're IN CREDIT. Guess not
Happiness economics is bollocks. Oh, UK.gov just adopted it? Er ...
Opportunity doesn't knock; it costs us instead
YARR! Pirates walk the plank: DMCA magnets sink in Google results
Spaffing copyrighted stuff over the web? No search ranking for you
In the next four weeks, 100 people will decide the future of the web
While America tucks into Thanksgiving turkey, the world will be taking over the net
Microsoft EU warns: If you have ties to the US, Feds can get your data
European corps can't afford to get complacent while American Big Biz battles Uncle Sam
Don't bother telling people if you lose their data, say Euro bods
You read that right – with the proviso that it's encrypted
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.