Breach, Data Security, Network Security

Amazon website glitch exposes customer data

Amazon customer service reportedly sent an unknown number of customers an email today, warning that a technical error on its website had exposed their data.

Details on incident are scant, as Amazon's disclosure was rather vague in details, according to several outlets that covered the development.

"Hello, We're contacting you to let you know that our website inadvertently disclosed your name and email address due to a technical error. The issue has been fixed," the email reads, as cited by numerous sources, including a tweet by security researcher Graham Cluley. "This is not a result of anything you have done, and there is no need for you to change your password or take any other action."

Multiple outlets have reported that Amazon has confirmed the breach and the fix, reassuring certain customers who had wondered if the email was a scam.

“Customer data leaks have become far too common and are often caused by security issues, or technical errors in Amazon’s case, that are often times easily preventable," said Carl Wright, chief commercial officer of AttackIQ, in emailed comments. "For a company that claimed half of all online sales through Black Friday 2017 and amassed over $1B in sales, allowing customer emails to be exposed could affect sales, especially when competitors like Target, Walmart and Best Buy made strong pushes in e-commerce around last year’s Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals."

Bradley Barth

As director of multimedia content strategy at CyberRisk Alliance, Bradley Barth develops content for online conferences, webcasts, podcasts video/multimedia projects — often serving as moderator or host. For nearly six years, he wrote and reported for SC Media as deputy editor and, before that, senior reporter. He was previously a program executive with the tech-focused PR firm Voxus. Past journalistic experience includes stints as business editor at Executive Technology, a staff writer at New York Sportscene and a freelance journalist covering travel and entertainment. In his spare time, Bradley also writes screenplays.

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