Data sharing between websites and third-party applications is a common practice, but a new research-based report takes a more focused look into the potential overreach of some of these apps, particularly as website managers lose sight of their third-party partners’ default settings and access rights.
The report, from Source Defense, examines how certain third-party programs can gain access to shoppers’ personal and payment data as they type it into webforms placed on e-commerce sites. To demonstrate the pervasiveness of this phenomenon, Source Defense researchers monitored multiple websites for 28 days and counted how many times an unnamed social media platform’s code attempted to access the site’s web form entries by default.
Source Defense ultimately observed millions of attempts: The anonymous social media app attempted to access web form data roughly 129.1 million times from a fast casual dining chain site, approximately 22.7 million times from a men’s apparel retailer, just under 6 million times from a kitchen appliance maker, and about 620,000 times from a seller of outdoors gear.
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