This is what Shawn Morton would look like if he had been made of LEGO -- the personal website of Shawn Morton
UPDATE: This blog has been retired as of August 2011. See this post for more information or connect with me on Twitter.
Friday, April 20, 2007
Spock exposing user e-mail addresses
... and sending them to total strangers.

Spock, the new people search engine that has been getting some attention recently, sent me a private beta invite this afternoon.

After unsuccessfully trying to use the link they sent me, I noticed something interesting. They are actually putting the user's e-mail address into the activation link. Not a smart move.

To make matters worse (not for me, though) is that they encoded someone else's e-mail address in the link. So not only do I have a bad experience and can't log in, someone by the name of C******** Y*** has just had her e-mail address sent to a complete stranger via Spock.

Beta service or not, that is just poor privacy and data protection. I'm kind of sorry that I gave them my e-mail address now. Who knows who got my invite. Maybe I could ask C********.

[UPDATE: 4:53PM] Spock responded to my e-mail (and this blog post) with the following:

"I just saw your blog post on Spock’s exposing people’s email addresses. We actually had a technical issue with a small batch of emails that we sent out that we are resolving.

We apologize for the mess up – and have not sent out any further links. Also, we have not sent out any emails except with C********’s encrypted email and we are working to resolve the situation. In order to protect the privacy of the person whose email got sent out via encrypted link, we’d like to ask you to take down her name and replace it with an alias if possible in order to reduce the damage done."

About Shawn Morton

Married father of 6; VP of Social Media at JPMorgan Chase; gluten-free; gadget enthusiast; hair metal aficionado; #Movember man View more on LinkedIn.