Feeds

Namesco spits out phishy warning after credit card info leak

'Please do not treat this as SPAM'

Intelligent flash storage arrays

Namesco customers are angry over the domain name and hosting firm's handling of a security breach that exposed their credit card details.

A number of punters' card details were leaked after hackers broke into Namesco's systems. The web biz notified these customers as well as advising a larger number of its clients to reset their passwords as a precaution.

Namesco warned that users' account administration email, account names, dates of birth, contact numbers and postal addresses may also have been exposed by the breach, adding: "we have no reason to believe your site administration or email passwords have been affected".

The officially sanctioned warning email contained a link where users could reset their Namesco passwords – rather than advising users to log into the site directly. Even worse, the password reset URL users see when they place their mouse over the link is different to that provided in the text of the email, and not on the names.co.uk domain (it points towards http://t.dadacommunication.com/xxxx before redirecting to https://admin.names.co.uk/reminder1.php).

This is just the sort of thing you'd expect to see in a phishing email, causing two recipients of the email we've corresponded with initially discount the communication as an attempted scam before they contacted the firm directly.

Their initial doubts over the email are completely understandable, especially given it begin with the line: "This email is a genuine security communication from Namesco and contains important information about your credit card details; please do not treat this as SPAM" – just the sort of line a phishing email would peddle.

Namesco's email has many of the characteristics of phishing emails the industry has been training users to ignore for years. In fact it's so cack-handed that we expect it to be fodder for courses on how not to do security notifications for years to come.

We've personally heard from six Namesco customers who were notified about the breach. All are unimpressed by the firm's handling of the incident and one is threatening to cancel his subscription.

Affected customers are less than pleased at being put through the inconvenience of cancelling their cards. It is some comfort that no fraud actually took place in either case. It also seems Namesco acted promptly, if somewhat ill-advisedly, after detecting a possible breach.

Namesco is one of UK's largest public ISP and domain name register services, managing in excess of 1.5 million domains worldwide.

In a series of updates to the firm's Twitter account, Namesco confirmed the breach and apologised to its clients. "Security breach detected, small number of customers affected & contacted direct to take precautions, other customers are safe," it said, adding "unauthorized 3rd party activity was detected & dealt with immediately, security is paramount, those affected were contacted".

Namesco's marketing manager was not immediately available to take our calls when The Register rang to find out more about its handling of the incident. We'll update this story as and when we hear more.

Update

Namesco has been in touch with The Reg to say: "Asking customers to cancel a payment card and change password was not a decision that was taken lightly, but we felt it critical to give customers the facts. We're obviously very sorry if our email was mistaken as phishing, but we'd expect customers to doubt the contents of any email when the information directly relates to their personal data.

"We have already implemented new security enhancements that strengthen our network infrastructure against criminal activity of this nature and remain dedicated to providing a high level of service that puts our customers first."

Remote control for virtualized desktops

More from The Register

next story
UK smart meters arrive in 2020. Hackers have ALREADY found a flaw
Energy summit bods warned of free energy bonanza
DRUPAL-OPCALYPSE! Devs say best assume your CMS is owned
SQLi hole was hit hard, fast, and before most admins knew it needed patching
Knock Knock tool makes a joke of Mac AV
Yes, we know Macs 'don't get viruses', but when they do this code'll spot 'em
Feds seek potential 'second Snowden' gov doc leaker – report
Hang on, Ed wasn't here when we compiled THIS document
Mozilla releases geolocating WiFi sniffer for Android
As if the civilians who never change access point passwords will ever opt out of this one
Why weasel words might not work for Whisper
CEO suspends editor but privacy questions remain
prev story

Whitepapers

Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
Simplify SSL certificate management across the enterprise
Simple steps to take control of SSL across the enterprise, and recommendations for a management platform for full visibility and single-point of control for these Certificates.