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Email billing blunder meant MVNO iD Mobile told 24,000 customers to pay up or have their service suspended
Thursday, 30 September 2021 00:05

HTTP/2 200 date: Fri, 01 Oct 2021 02:00:22 GMT content-type: text/html; charset=UTF-8 link: ; rel=preload; as=script;,/edf107abd2501a9a9cfb47145841d19e3474a166/javascript/_.js>; rel=preload; as=script;,/default/ba4a58189918078cc9718a957c2d2e04c16ceeb1/scaffolding.css>; rel=preload; as=style;,/default/ba4a58189918078cc9718a957c2d2e04c16ceeb1/design.css>; rel=preload; as=style;,/5e49edbd1875f214e0decae1e24b200066780fa8/style/fonts/arimo/arimo-700.latin.woff2>; rel=preload; as=font; crossorigin;,/5e49edbd1875f214e0decae1e24b200066780fa8/style/fonts/arimo/arimo-400.latin.woff2>; rel=preload; as=font; crossorigin; cache-control: max-age=0 expires: Fri, 01 Oct 2021 02:00:21 GMT vary: Accept-Encoding x-reg-bofh: pfy03us x-clacks-overhead: GNU Terry Pratchett, Lester Haines cf-cache-status: DYNAMIC expect-ct: max-age=604800, report-uri="https://report-uri.cloudflare.com/cdn-cgi/beacon/expect-ct" server: cloudflare cf-ray: 697218d03daf5aa4-MEL iD Mobile email billing blunder snares 24k punters • The Register

Rush of subscribers trying to sort it brings network's online portal down


iD mobile – the Dixons Carphone-owned mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) which piggybacks on Three UK's network – has apologised after a billing snafu warned 24,000 customers they needed to cough up or else.

In an email sent to customers earlier this week, the MVNO warned: "There is currently an outstanding balance of £[xx] on your iD Mobile account. Unfortunately, your service will be suspended until the full outstanding balance has been paid."

It went on to say that suspended services would only resume "once a payment has been made."

One of those who received the erroneous email told us that iD Mobile hadn't taken any payment so far this month, but that "irate customers" were flocking to Twitter to share their concerns.

As a result of a spike in activity from phone users trying to sort out what it was they were being asked for, iD Mobile's portal didn't work for some.

In a statement, iD Mobile – which has 1.1 million customers according to its 2020/2021 Dixons Carphone annual report – admitted their error and apologised.

Earlier this month consumer group Which? quoted figures from telecoms regulator Ofcom [PDF] which stated there are more than 80 million active mobile subscriptions in the UK, and the overwhelming majority of customers are with one of the "big four" networks – EE, O2, Three and Vodafone.

"It's easy to be reassured by a big brand, but virtual networks have to work harder for your money, and do so by offering extremely competitive alternatives," it said. ®

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A group of 21 current and former employees of Blue Origin, Amazon.com founder Jeff Bezos’s rocketry side hobby, have penned an open letter that describes the company as fostering a sexist culture, intolerant of internal dissent, and sanguine about safety.

Blue Origin has said the lead author was fired, and that the letter’s claims are false.

The letter, revealed today and titled “Bezos Wants to Create a Better Future in Space. His Company Blue Origin Is Stuck in a Toxic Past” is attributed to “Alexandra Abrams, Former Head of Blue Origin Employee Communications, and 20 other Blue Origin employees and former employees on the New Shepard, New Glenn, Blue Engines, Advanced Development Programs, Test & Flight Operations, and Human Resources teams.”

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Boffins at the University of Birmingham and the University of Surrey in England have managed to find a way to remove the contactless payment limit on iPhones with Apple Pay and Visa cards if "Express Transit" mode has been enabled.

Express Transit mode enables Apple Pay transactions without unlocking an iPhone or requiring authentication. It's intended as a convenience feature to facilitate charges when passing through public transit ticketing gates that support contactless readers like Europay, Mastercard, and Visa (EMV).

Continue readingWhat do iOS and Android have in common? Their apps suck at privacy, boffins say Plus 'widespread potential violations of US, EU, UK privacy law' as an added bonus

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In a paper titled, "Are iPhones Really Better for Privacy? Comparative Study of iOS and Android Apps," researchers Konrad Kollnig, Anastasia Shuba, Reuben Binns, Max Van Kleek, and Nigel Shadbolt examined 24,000 Android and iOS apps available on both platforms in 2020 and concluded that iPhones are not better for privacy, and that Android and iOS apps fail to protect data.

The researchers looked at 12,000 apps from each ecosystem, testing them via static analysis and dynamic analysis, looking at tracking libraries and the companies behind them, checking network traffic for personally identifiable information (PII), and analyzing permissions.

Continue readingXero, Slack suffer outages just as Let's Encrypt root cert expiry downs other websites, services 'The internet is a complex system'

Updated Websites and apps are suffering or have suffered outages around the world for at least some netizens today due to connectivity issues.

Though the exact causes of the IT breakdowns are in many cases not fully known right now, there has been a sudden uptick in downtime right as Let's Encrypt, which provides free HTTPS certificates to a ton of organizations, let one of its root and intermediate certs expire.

This expiration should be invisible to software, services, and users relying on the certificates for encryption, tamper-proof communications and whatnot, however not all systems appear to have handled the expiry well. Thus, it is assumed the expiration and at least some of today's outages are interlinked. Other downtime, such as Slack's teetering, is not tied to Let's Encrypt.

Continue readingRansomware crim: Yeah, what I do is bad. No, I don't care. Yes, infosec bods are all mouth and no trousers Claimed REvil contractor badmouths West from anonymous pulpit

Someone claiming to be a former contractor for the REvil ransomware gang has given an interview to a security firm, saying he struggles to sleep at night but isn't ashamed of what he does.

The unnamed person was interviewed by Russian news outlet Lenta as part of a series focusing on the mostly Russia-based scourge of modern times. US infosec firm Flashpoint obtained the full transcript of the interview and translated it into English.

"In the normal world, I was called a contractor – doing some tasks for many ransomware collectives that journalists consider to be famous," said the threat actor, using the handle Antivirus. "Money is being stolen or extorted with my hands. But I'm not ashamed of what I do."

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In the short term, though, the latter involves some heavy lifting. What about all the existing schemas and transactional code in your existing installation? Transitioning all that to a new format in the cloud takes some heavy lifting.

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Continue readingWhich? survey finds people would actually pay the online giants not to take their data On the other hand, sweeten the deal with a couple of quid and they'll be a lot more happy to share

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The British consumer champion has repeatedly argued that people are uncomfortable about the amount of data collected and stored by tech companies from online activity and gadgets in the home.

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£700k isn't very much in aviation terms – if any private jet fans are reading this, that's the cost of about one-and-a-half roundtrips to Sydney in a Gulfstream G-650. So maybe fly commercial, and, er, reuse that tux.

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HTTP/2 200 date: Fri, 01 Oct 2021 02:00:22 GMT content-type: text/html; charset=UTF-8 link: ; rel=preload; as=script;,/edf107abd2501a9a9cfb47145841d19e3474a166/javascript/_.js>; rel=preload; as=script;,/default/ba4a58189918078cc9718a957c2d2e04c16ceeb1/scaffolding.css>; rel=preload; as=style;,/default/ba4a58189918078cc9718a957c2d2e04c16ceeb1/design.css>; rel=preload; as=style;,/5e49edbd1875f214e0decae1e24b200066780fa8/style/fonts/arimo/arimo-700.latin.woff2>; rel=preload; as=font; crossorigin;,/5e49edbd1875f214e0decae1e24b200066780fa8/style/fonts/arimo/arimo-400.latin.woff2>; rel=preload; as=font; crossorigin; cache-control: max-age=0 expires: Fri, 01 Oct 2021 02:00:21 GMT vary: Accept-Encoding x-reg-bofh: pfy03us x-clacks-overhead: GNU Terry Pratchett, Lester Haines cf-cache-status: DYNAMIC expect-ct: max-age=604800, report-uri="https://report-uri.cloudflare.com/cdn-cgi/beacon/expect-ct" server: cloudflare cf-ray: 697218d03daf5aa4-MEL iD Mobile email billing blunder snares 24k punters • The Register

Rush of subscribers trying to sort it brings network's online portal down


iD mobile – the Dixons Carphone-owned mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) which piggybacks on Three UK's network – has apologised after a billing snafu warned 24,000 customers they needed to cough up or else.

In an email sent to customers earlier this week, the MVNO warned: "There is currently an outstanding balance of £[xx] on your iD Mobile account. Unfortunately, your service will be suspended until the full outstanding balance has been paid."

It went on to say that suspended services would only resume "once a payment has been made."

One of those who received the erroneous email told us that iD Mobile hadn't taken any payment so far this month, but that "irate customers" were flocking to Twitter to share their concerns.

As a result of a spike in activity from phone users trying to sort out what it was they were being asked for, iD Mobile's portal didn't work for some.

In a statement, iD Mobile – which has 1.1 million customers according to its 2020/2021 Dixons Carphone annual report – admitted their error and apologised.

Earlier this month consumer group Which? quoted figures from telecoms regulator Ofcom [PDF] which stated there are more than 80 million active mobile subscriptions in the UK, and the overwhelming majority of customers are with one of the "big four" networks – EE, O2, Three and Vodafone.

"It's easy to be reassured by a big brand, but virtual networks have to work harder for your money, and do so by offering extremely competitive alternatives," it said. ®

Similar topics


Other stories you might like

A group of 21 current and former employees of Blue Origin, Amazon.com founder Jeff Bezos’s rocketry side hobby, have penned an open letter that describes the company as fostering a sexist culture, intolerant of internal dissent, and sanguine about safety.

Blue Origin has said the lead author was fired, and that the letter’s claims are false.

The letter, revealed today and titled “Bezos Wants to Create a Better Future in Space. His Company Blue Origin Is Stuck in a Toxic Past” is attributed to “Alexandra Abrams, Former Head of Blue Origin Employee Communications, and 20 other Blue Origin employees and former employees on the New Shepard, New Glenn, Blue Engines, Advanced Development Programs, Test & Flight Operations, and Human Resources teams.”

Continue readingRevealed: How to steal money from victims' contactless Apple Pay wallets Boffins devise tricks to dupe stolen or nearby iPhones into paying out when in transit mode and using Visa

Apple's digital wallet Apple Pay will pay whatever amount is demanded of it, without authorization, if configured for transit mode with a Visa card, and exposed to a hostile contactless reader.

Boffins at the University of Birmingham and the University of Surrey in England have managed to find a way to remove the contactless payment limit on iPhones with Apple Pay and Visa cards if "Express Transit" mode has been enabled.

Express Transit mode enables Apple Pay transactions without unlocking an iPhone or requiring authentication. It's intended as a convenience feature to facilitate charges when passing through public transit ticketing gates that support contactless readers like Europay, Mastercard, and Visa (EMV).

Continue readingWhat do iOS and Android have in common? Their apps suck at privacy, boffins say Plus 'widespread potential violations of US, EU, UK privacy law' as an added bonus

Apple says, "Privacy is a fundamental human right." Google says, "We build privacy that works for everyone." But neither mega-corp manages to provide much privacy on their mobile devices, according to a study conducted by boffins at the University of Oxford in England and UC Irvine in America.

In a paper titled, "Are iPhones Really Better for Privacy? Comparative Study of iOS and Android Apps," researchers Konrad Kollnig, Anastasia Shuba, Reuben Binns, Max Van Kleek, and Nigel Shadbolt examined 24,000 Android and iOS apps available on both platforms in 2020 and concluded that iPhones are not better for privacy, and that Android and iOS apps fail to protect data.

The researchers looked at 12,000 apps from each ecosystem, testing them via static analysis and dynamic analysis, looking at tracking libraries and the companies behind them, checking network traffic for personally identifiable information (PII), and analyzing permissions.

Continue readingXero, Slack suffer outages just as Let's Encrypt root cert expiry downs other websites, services 'The internet is a complex system'

Updated Websites and apps are suffering or have suffered outages around the world for at least some netizens today due to connectivity issues.

Though the exact causes of the IT breakdowns are in many cases not fully known right now, there has been a sudden uptick in downtime right as Let's Encrypt, which provides free HTTPS certificates to a ton of organizations, let one of its root and intermediate certs expire.

This expiration should be invisible to software, services, and users relying on the certificates for encryption, tamper-proof communications and whatnot, however not all systems appear to have handled the expiry well. Thus, it is assumed the expiration and at least some of today's outages are interlinked. Other downtime, such as Slack's teetering, is not tied to Let's Encrypt.

Continue readingRansomware crim: Yeah, what I do is bad. No, I don't care. Yes, infosec bods are all mouth and no trousers Claimed REvil contractor badmouths West from anonymous pulpit

Someone claiming to be a former contractor for the REvil ransomware gang has given an interview to a security firm, saying he struggles to sleep at night but isn't ashamed of what he does.

The unnamed person was interviewed by Russian news outlet Lenta as part of a series focusing on the mostly Russia-based scourge of modern times. US infosec firm Flashpoint obtained the full transcript of the interview and translated it into English.

"In the normal world, I was called a contractor – doing some tasks for many ransomware collectives that journalists consider to be famous," said the threat actor, using the handle Antivirus. "Money is being stolen or extorted with my hands. But I'm not ashamed of what I do."

Continue readingMigrating to Aurora just got a lot easier Making the switch using Babelfish

Sponsored Moving your proprietary on-premises database to the cloud makes your infrastructure more flexible. Moving to an open-source managed database that the cloud service provider looks after for you also saves your DBA a ton of work in the long run.

In the short term, though, the latter involves some heavy lifting. What about all the existing schemas and transactional code in your existing installation? Transitioning all that to a new format in the cloud takes some heavy lifting.

Up till now, this might have given developers and DBAs pause when considering a transition to Aurora, Amazon Web Service's cloud-native relational database. Developed from the ground up with the cloud in mind, the service offers numerous benefits, including high availability by default, flexibility, and simple license-free operation.

Continue readingEU and US seek 'common principles' for data governance and AI Technology, security, competitiveness also on agenda. *Cough* Privacy Shield *cough*

The EU and the United States of America plan to work together to build a common approach to data governance and policies around technology platforms, according to a joint statement.

Information and communications technology security and competitiveness, as well as the misuse of technology threatening security and human rights are also in scope of the Inaugural Trade and Technology Council Meeting between the global superpower and the world’s largest economic and political bloc.

Launched by president Joe Biden, European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen, and European Council president Charles Michel at the U.S.-EU Summit in June 2021, the Council held its first meeting yesterday.

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A UK law firm is bringing legal action on behalf of patients it says had their confidential medical records obtained by Google and DeepMind Technologies in breach of data protection laws.

Mishcon de Reya said today it planned a representative action on behalf of Mr Andrew Prismall and the approximately 1.6 million individuals whose data was used as part of a testing programme for medical software developed by the companies.

It told The Register the claim had already been issued in the High Court.

Continue readingWhich? survey finds people would actually pay the online giants not to take their data On the other hand, sweeten the deal with a couple of quid and they'll be a lot more happy to share

Consumer guardian Which? has attempted to put a price on people's personal information as it ramps up pressure for tougher rules around data-ravenous tech giants such as Google and Facebook.

The British consumer champion has repeatedly argued that people are uncomfortable about the amount of data collected and stored by tech companies from online activity and gadgets in the home.

Now it has changed tack and commissioned a 111-page report – Value of the Choice Requirement Remedy – that attempts to estimate the amount of money people in the UK would be prepared to pay Facebook and Google in return for greater control over how their data is collected and used.

Continue readingAirline meal-sized £700k awarded by UK.gov for green aviation: That's for eco-tech rather than planes, mind Infrastructure to support lower-emission aircraft, is the hope

More than a dozen projects that might someday provide the infrastructure at airports to sustain zero-emission aviation are on the receiving end of grant money to continue their research.

£700k isn't very much in aviation terms – if any private jet fans are reading this, that's the cost of about one-and-a-half roundtrips to Sydney in a Gulfstream G-650. So maybe fly commercial, and, er, reuse that tux.

It's just as well, then, that the £700,000 will not be spent on the development of aircraft.

Continue readingAutonomy founder Lynch scores extradition decision delay as Home Sec ponders sending him to US All eyes on Priti Patel as High Court case recedes into insignificance

Autonomy Trial Home Secretary Priti Patel has granted Autonomy founder Mike Lynch a two month grace period on the decision to extradite him, according to reports.

Lynch's waiting period to see if Patel will order his extradition to stand trial on criminal charges in the US will now end on 29 November, the Daily Telegraphreported.

Continue reading

Source: https://bit.ly/3D2jife