Feeds

PayPal post-checkout cash slurp a FEATURE not a BUG

Would you like a super-sized shipping charge with that?

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

An apparent flaw that lets users add any amount of money onto already processed PayPal transactions is a feature, not a bug, according to the payments giant.

The function was designed to allow sellers to add additional costs for services like shipping on the top of transaction totals which customers had approved through the PayPal website.

Sellers would be expected to add small amounts but TU-Berlin IT student Jan Kechel found PayPal had not limited the amount of cash that could be swindled and sent the company a proof of concept script.

"In PayPal Express Checkout the online shop can transfer any amount, no matter which amount the client actual confirmed at the PayPal website," Kechel said.

"This proof of concept transfers only one Euro more than the confirmed amount, but I also tried with 200 Euros and it works just the same."

PayPal told Vulture South Kechel's bug was more of a shiny button.

"We can confirm that through our Bug Bounty Program a researcher reported a suspected vulnerability with our PayPal Express Checkout," a spokesperson said.

"After looking into the issue, we communicated this is not in fact a vulnerability. We work closely with our merchants who use Express Checkout to provide them the flexibility they need to complete their transactions in a timely manner so they can offer excellent payments experiences to their customers."

The company did not say if it plans to cap the rate or otherwise reduce the potential impact of the fraud. Defrauded customers do have the option of seeking reimbursements from PayPal, which like many banks shells out for fraudulent transactions in the name of consumer confidence.

Customers would be alerted to the scam if they opted for email verification and further bothered to open them as the payment details were contained in the body of the messages.

Last month, former NASA hacker turned white hat Razvan Cernaianu, aka Tinkode, reported a flaw to PayPal's bug bounty team which he said allowed fraudsters to double their money.

The payment giant brushed off the report but did not say how it could prevent one off instances of the scam which involved the funneling of cash to a mule account prior to a dispute claim being lodged. ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
SMASH the Bash bug! Apple and Red Hat scramble for patch batches
'Applying multiple security updates is extremely difficult'
Apple's new iPhone 6 vulnerable to last year's TouchID fingerprint hack
But unsophisticated thieves need not attempt this trick
Hackers thrash Bash Shellshock bug: World races to cover hole
Update your gear now to avoid early attacks hitting the web
Oracle SHELLSHOCKER - data titan lists unpatchables
Database kingpin lists 32 products that can't be patched (yet) as GNU fixes second vuln
Who.is does the Harlem Shake
Blame it on LOLing XSS terroristas
Researchers tell black hats: 'YOU'RE SOOO PREDICTABLE'
Want to register that domain? We're way ahead of you.
Stunned by Shellshock Bash bug? Patch all you can – or be punished
UK data watchdog rolls up its sleeves, polishes truncheon
Ello? ello? ello?: Facebook challenger in DDoS KNOCKOUT
Gets back up again after half an hour though
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.