Wednesday, 21 October 2015

Secure a Sapce ?

This is one of the biggest fails ever! How can you misspell your own URL on the tickets you are issuing and more importantly, in the section where you actually ask people to visit that non-existent misspelled URL and pay a parking fine?! Yes, they did! This is not a hoax!

Lets look at the ticket. The parking fine has instructions on how to pay it online. There is a header which says: HOW TO MAKE A PAYMENT. Below that you will see the name of the company and its postal address. However, you will notice that they have misspelled their own URL! 

Instead of they are asking people to visit an non-existent website called Well, non-existent until recently, because I actually bought the misspelled website. I bought it in order to warn others that the URL is misspelled on the ticket and they should visit the correct URL. I also bought it because I wanted to raise the security concerns I am mentioning below. 

The following is a screenshot of the website I created to warn visitors that this is not the payment website they are looking for:

Can you imagine what a fraudster could do with this?! Can you see how much money one could make by taking advantage of this spelling mistake? Do you see how easy it would be for someone to steal payment details? Do you understand the security implications this company is exposing people to? Can you tell me if this company should be fined? Imagine if a cyber-criminal decided to spread malware through this misspelled URL and take advantage of the people who wanted to pay the fine online? 

I strongly believe that this company should be fined and made an example to other companies. This company is exposing the visitors to high risk by not taking seriously their job. They are liable for what is printed on their tickets.

Also, the whole situation raised some more concerns because of the way I ended up coming across this ticket. In an empty space where people used to park for free in order to be able to visit the local market and shops, "Secure a Space" (a random company with a website from the 80s) decided to put up one day 2-3 tiny signs around an empty space, with the smallest font possible. 

So, without any clear/visible warning signs, they expect people to park where they used to, so they can make money by issuing fines. Simply because visitors do not know that this is no longer a free parking area! And if you are asking, there are no tickets machines around either! So, if you look around, there is nothing telling you or even raise the smallest suspicion that this parking lot is now under private parking control. 

From my point of view, this should be highly illegal to do. There should be some kind of minimum standards for this. A visible warning at the entrance with fonts big enough to read from inside the car, the cost of parking and all necessary information. 

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