Kara Swisher

Recent Posts by Kara Swisher

AT&T Responds to BoomTown Privacy Breach Via Email (Oh, the Irony!)

Earlier today, I wrote a piece about how I was one of the 114,000 AT&T customers whose email and device identity numbers had been easily exposed earlier this week via a flaw in the way the company registered the Apple (AAPL) iPad 3G for cellular access.

In my post, I complained that I had yet to hear from the telecom giant about the security snafu and release of my personal email address, which AT&T (T) had yet to acknowledge to those impacted.

Well, the company does read tech blogs, so this morning, this communication from a PR honcho was sent to my work email, which is available on this site publicly.

Regrets? AT&T has a few:

Hi Kara:

I am writing to apologize that your personal e-mail address was made public. As you know, we fixed the flaw that caused this almost as soon as we heard about it from one of our business customers. But that doesn’t change the fact that your personal information was exposed without your permission. That is something we truly regret.

Nothing is more important to us than protecting the privacy of customer information. You should know that in this case, the only thing compromised was your email address and not, for example, the contents of your email or any other personal information. And as you also know, the problem only affected iPad 3G customers. No other mobile devices or customers were involved.

Thanks very much for your patience. Please let me know if there is anything we can do for you or if you have any questions.

Mark Siegel
Executive Director-Media Relations
[Address redacted]
[Work phone number redacted]
[Mobile phone number}
[Email address redacted]

As you can see, I used my crack security system–DELETE!–to save Siegel any incursions into his privacy.

And while I do appreciate the reaching out, I still want to hear–as do others affected–officially from AT&T about exactly what’s what.

Siegel told me in a follow-up email: “We are finalizing our plans for communicating with customers.”

(Suggestion to make us happy: A free iPhone 4 might be a sweet gesture. Only kidding!! Sort of.)

In addition, I am not sure, as he wrote in the initial email, whether it is comforting or not that it was only my email and only my iPad 3G that were violated.

That’s sort of like telling me that only one room of my digital house was broken into, although nothing good was taken, so not to worry.

Actually, if that happened in real life, I would still call the police. That is, if the call on my iPhone didn’t drop.

Again, I kid! Sort of.

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When AllThingsD began, we told readers we were aiming to present a fusion of new-media timeliness and energy with old-media standards for quality and ethics. And we hope you agree that we’ve done that.

— Kara Swisher and Walt Mossberg, in their farewell D post