USPS, Amazon Weather Bad Data Days as Peak Season Begins

November 28, 2018

In the midst of the kickoff to the busiest shopping season of the year, news emerged that both the U.S. Postal Service and Amazon experienced data glitches that exposed customer information.

The USPS may have exposed the personal data of more than 60 million customers via a security hole, including access to information on when checks and other critical documents were set to arrive.

Amazon meanwhile told an unknown number of customers their names and email addresses were exposed due to a technical error on its ecommerce site.

“We’re contacting you to let you know that our website inadvertently disclosed your name and email address due to a technical error,” read an email from Amazon customer service, according to Silicon Republic. “The issue has been fixed. 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.”

“We have fixed the issue and informed customers who may have been impacted,” Amazon told TechCrunch, providing no further details.

The USPS incident was caused by a broken application programming interface (API) in its Informed Visibility service. The now ironically named service gives customers a better window into when items are expected to arrive in their mailbox or on their front step.

Information including account numbers, email addresses, street addresses and phone numbers were put at risk. Potentially, any USPS.com account holder could have viewed other users’ private data.

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