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Rogue Employees Sell World Cup Fans' Passport Data

timothy posted more than 4 years ago | from the penalty-box-with-bars-please dept.

Crime 128

An anonymous reader writes "Reports are coming in that the Information Commissioner's Office has started investigating FIFA, the world football governing body, over allegations that details of thousands of World Cup fans' — including their passport data — were accessed by one or more members of staff and then sold on the black market. It is alleged that the details of more than 35,000 English fans — who visited Germany for the 2006 World Cup — had their passport and allied data sold to ticket touts for marketing purposes."

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One more reason just to kill scalpers. (1)

sethstorm (512897) | more than 4 years ago | (#33541814)

It is alleged that the details of more than 35,000 English fans -- who visited Germany for the 2006 World Cup -- had their passport and allied data sold to ticket touts for marketing purposes."

No wonder, they're scalpers.

Re:One more reason just to kill scalpers. (4, Insightful)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 4 years ago | (#33541966)

Um, I really don't see whats so bad about "scalping" tickets. If people are willing to pay more than the listed price, let them. Now, granted, selling personal data is bad, but scalping isn't. Its simply the free market at work, if I've got something I bought at $5, why should I -have- to sell them at that price? If someone wants to spend $10, $20, $50 on them, let them.

Re:One more reason just to kill scalpers. (1, Redundant)

SudoGhost (1779150) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542062)

Because then that promotes someone buying 100 tickets at full price, and selling them for double. That takes away from 100 people who were going to be able to buy tickets at full price.

Re:One more reason just to kill scalpers. (2, Interesting)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542098)

...Then they should be priced double that. The only reason scalpers exist is because there is an imbalance between what people are selling something for and what they are worth. Why should I be outraged that Bob's Arena is selling Justin Bieber tickets for $40 but people are willing to pay $80 for them? And it isn't like these are any sort of vital resources like gas, oil or water. I really see nothing to be outraged about, should I also be outraged that some people go to garage sales and get baseball cards worth $100 for $5?

Re:One more reason just to kill scalpers. (2, Insightful)

shentino (1139071) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542210)

I'm curious if scalpers sell more or less tickets than the original vendors would have sold had they used the scalper's prices to begin with.

The question is, do the scalpers inflate the prices artificially by monopolizing the supply?

Re:One more reason just to kill scalpers. (2, Interesting)

sjames (1099) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542454)

Another factor is the sold-out cred. The optimum price (defined purely economically) will tend to leave a few unsold seats. There is a lot of cred in the entertainment world to selling out an event. Not selling out is seen as a sign of flagging popularity.

in baseball... (1)

KingAlanI (1270538) | more than 4 years ago | (#33543100)

The Boston Red Sox make a point of making their ticket prices a bit low, so that they get credit for a sell-out as the scalpers pick them up; this also moves unsold-ticket risk form the owners to the scalpers.

Figures; I got the tix for the 2 games I went to off StubHub.

Several dozen games in the same place might be different from concerts spread out over the country/continent/world (with 1, maybe 2 or 3, stops per city), I don't know.

Re:One more reason just to kill scalpers. (1, Insightful)

hedwards (940851) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542224)

That's bullshit. The reason why scalpers exist is because the ticket sellers allow the tickets to be bought up in huge quantities before people have the chance to buy them. People pay it because they have little choice but to pay. With popular acts, the tickets are frequently sold out more or less immediately, leaving ordinary people with little chance to buy.

What you're suggesting is a little bit like buying up all the oil quickly, then gouging the hell out of it when the people without the means to get in early need it.

Re:One more reason just to kill scalpers. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33542366)

>People pay it because they have little choice but to pay.

It isn't a basic human requirement to go. They can choose not to. The fact the scalper could actually buy all the tickets and then sell them at a profit proves that, in fact, the original seller is not as savvy about their market as the scalper is.

>What you're suggesting is a little bit like buying up all the oil quickly, then gouging the hell out of it when the people without the means to get in early need it.

Considering oil is required to heat homes and provide for basic transportation needs in many places, no, it's completely different. Unless the tickets are for aid, in that case, yes, the scalper deserves to be shot. Then again, I've never heard of that happening, so I'm not even going to consider it.

All the scalpers I've seen do it for popular concerts and sporting events, none of which are even within shooting distance of a basic human necessity. In fact, for most of the things scalpers sell tickets to, you can get them at a much reduced price on video. Yes, the experience is reduced. And that's why people are willing to pay more for the tickets. More than the original sellers thought they'd pay.

Scalpers can also provide a valuable service in that people who didn't get their tickets during the initial rush have the opportunity to buy them all the way up to the moment the event opens (even after the event opens) despite the event being "sold out", all for money, which is always considered something that buys everything (except happiness in great quantities).

Re:One more reason just to kill scalpers. (2, Insightful)

Mr. Freeman (933986) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542814)

Yes, one of these products is necessary and the other is not. However, you haven't demonstrated how the ECONOMICS of the situation are different in any way whatsoever. Your argument is a red herring.

The argument is that scalpers monopolize the ticket supply, which is like oil sheiks selling the oil at inflated prices. Your response is that because one product is necessary and the other isn't the entire comparison is absolutely insane.

So, I'll start the argument again. I assert that ticket scalpers monopolize (a significant portion of) the ticket supply. This is unfair to consumers who are now forced to pay inflated prices for tickets that the manufacturer (performer, artist, musician, whatever) originally sold. Now, because musicians/artists/etc. provide services that are largely advertised through word of mouth (i.e. your friend tells you about this great new album) I also assert that keeping ticket prices at the original level determined by the artist is vital for the success of the artist. Selling out a concert generates revenue from ticket sales and through future word of mouth advertising. Scalpers raise the price of the tickets and thus reduce the number of people willing to buy the tickets. This harms the future revenue potential of the artist. Thus, scalpers are unfair to consumers and harmful to content producers.

Please, when responding to my argument don't go off on some stupid ass tangent about necessary products.

Re:One more reason just to kill scalpers. (1)

sjames (1099) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542466)

Actually, there are limits. The scalpers often go to extremes in order to snap up huge quantities of tickets in lots of 10.

Re:One more reason just to kill scalpers. (1)

Hognoxious (631665) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542634)

I'm sure that if you know someone in the inside those limits can be bypassed.

Re:One more reason just to kill scalpers. (1)

sjames (1099) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542672)

Probably, but mostly they just initiate many many sessions and buy 10 tickets each. They do it a bit like the high frequency traders do on Wall street.

Re:One more reason just to kill scalpers. (1)

eyrieowl (881195) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542620)

Perhaps the ticket sellers could do more...although I'd imagine the only thing that would be likely to work is to require that all tickets have a name associated with them at time of sale, and that only the named party is able to use them. Barring that...it's a distributed attack. The scalpers can get thousands of people to buy tickets on their behalf for a small payout, and then they can take ownership of those tickets and resell them at a high premium. How are the ticket sellers suppose to know that Bob is buying on behalf of a scalper and has no interest in going to see the show? Short of the preventative measure I mention, I don't know how they can.

Re:One more reason just to kill scalpers. (3, Insightful)

lul_wat (1623489) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542318)

Just because you can be a cunt, doesn't meant you have to be.

Re:One more reason just to kill scalpers. (1)

eyrieowl (881195) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542608)

Well, you can certainly choose to feel otherwise, but if the provider of the entertainment I want to attend wants to sell the tickets to their event at a price which I am able to pay, and some douche does an end run around the provider's restrictions to monopolize the supply and then sells those same tickets for a price I'm not able to justify paying...I get a little ticked by that. If a band/team/whatever else wants to give their fans an equal shot at being able to attend their event, they should be able to do so. They want to be choosy about who they sell to and sell below market price? They should be able to do so. Ticket scalpers take that ability away from them. And piss off lots of other people. Like me.

Re:One more reason just to kill scalpers. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33544092)

Why should I be outraged that Bob's Arena is selling Justin Bieber tickets for $40 but people are willing to pay $80 for them?

Because without scalpers buying thousands of tickets at a shot, causing the venue to sell out and creating a market-cornering monopoly effect, the price of a ticket isn't inflated. People pay the increased price not because it's "what the market will bear," but because the market isn't a free one any more.

Re:One more reason just to kill scalpers. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33542146)

considering i just paid a hundred bucks for a framed last peanuts comic i think i have to say. people will pay money for anything.

Re:One more reason just to kill scalpers. (1)

ooshna (1654125) | more than 4 years ago | (#33543858)

considering i just paid a hundred bucks for a framed last peanuts comic i think i have to say. stupid people will pay money for anything.

Fixed that for you.

Re:One more reason just to kill scalpers. (1, Interesting)

phantomfive (622387) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542438)

It's because if I'm going to pay $500 for a ticket, I want it to go to the artist, not to some guy who is fast on the phone and managed to get 5000 tickets so he could make 10 times what he payed for them. I'd also prefer it if the tickets were distributed fairly, not based on who has the most money to bid on them.

Re:One more reason just to kill scalpers. (3, Insightful)

sjames (1099) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542444)

It's because nobody likes leaches that jump in the middle of a transaction and grab money from both sides. Such people contribute nothing and so should gain nothing.

If the tickets were an unlimited resource, few would care, but more typically the scalpers descent and snap up all of the tickets leaving people no choice if they want to see the event.

The original seller may well have an interest in the affordability of the event. For example, it's strongly in their best interest to not have fans give up on getting tickets ever again and lose interest.

Re:One more reason just to kill scalpers. (1)

Jurily (900488) | more than 4 years ago | (#33543520)

but more typically the scalpers descent and snap up all of the tickets leaving people no choice if they want to see the event.

The problem is that a) there is a big difference in the ticket prices and their perceived value, especially the "last ones", and b) they can buy enough tickets to cause a problem. Scalpers merely buy low, and sell high.

Last time I heard, the entire world economy was based on that idea. Why does nobody object to the stock market?

Re:One more reason just to kill scalpers. (1)

ooshna (1654125) | more than 4 years ago | (#33543870)

Plenty of people object to sleazy stock market practices. Does the term hedge fund mean anything to you?

Re:One more reason just to kill scalpers. (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33544200)

Scalpers will hawk events and pounce when tickets go on sale and buy MANY tickets. If you want to see the event and are at work, you won't have time to sit and refresh the screen over and over just to get two tickets. Scalpers have automated the buying and can pretty much buy the entire arena if they want. The "buy low and sell high" isn't all that is happening. It should be "buy fast and sell high". I've heard of a couple of events where scalpers bought more tickets than people who want to go see the event. This is more akin to drying up the supply to inflate the price to make a buck. And that has always been frowned upon.

Re:One more reason just to kill scalpers. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33544312)

It's because nobody likes leaches that jump in the middle of a transaction and grab money from both sides. Such people contribute nothing and so should gain nothing.

Funny - didn't we recently bail out Wall St because their "contributions to the economy" were too vital to trifle with?

Re:One more reason just to kill scalpers. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33542580)

If people are willing to pay more than the listed price ... Its simply the free market at work

Disclaimer: Read the parent's post for context.
The problem with scalping is not that you (an individual) want to resell your tickets and maybe make a little profit. The problem is that organizations with special privileges buy most of the tickets in advance and if you want to see the show, you have to pay their premium on top of the ticket price. An organization with an unfair advantage in buying product for the sole purpose of resale might be 'free market' by the letter, but it is a good example of why the market should not be completely unrestricted.

Re:One more reason just to kill scalpers. (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33544018)

Well, it depends: If you want only your richest fans to attend, yes. But sometimes there are sectors of fans who can only afford the lowest prices, and so tickets are priced accordingly. Yes, yes, it's not perfect capitalism, but it sometimes makes more sense to sell the $5 ticket to a kid who's going to come every week to the great games and the minor games, than the $100 ticket to someone who isn't all that interested in the team but wants just to see the one spectacle. Cheap tickets to major events can generate new long term fans.

Now, sometimes you do this by enforcing certain requirements, such as student ID, senior citizen's card etc etc. But how do you make someone prove that they're poor? (OK, jokes aside, I know there will be some really funny cracks at that). Or should watching the national sports team compete be restricted to those rich enough to afford high prices? That's a sure-fire way to kill the grass-roots of your sport.

Not everything should be done just to maximize your profit. Occasionally there's a benefit other than monetary to be gained from things, and scalpers ruin this.

Make the punishment fit the crime (4, Funny)

humblecoder (472099) | more than 4 years ago | (#33541848)

When they catch the people who did this, they should be forced to listen to those vuvuzelas at high volume until their ears bleed. That'll teach 'em.

Re:Make the punishment fit the crime (5, Insightful)

socsoc (1116769) | more than 4 years ago | (#33541908)

On a serious note, if it's the second scenario supposed in TFA.... Keeping that sort of personal data for that long without any proper use for it shows either a heavy degree of incompetence or a desire to use it for their own promotions and that they are sour that "rogue" employees beat them to selling the information.

Re:Make the punishment fit the crime (1)

SlashDev (627697) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542568)

And why would the FIFA ask for passport data in the first place?

Re:Make the punishment fit the crime (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33542872)

Probably to ensure that known violent football hooligans do not get tickets? I seem to recall reading some time ago that some of these violent hooligans were flat out banned from traveling to, let alone attending football games because their primary intent is to get drunk and brawl with rivals. And by brawl I don't mean a couple of drunks engaging in fisticuffs but mass fighting on a scale that we in the U.S. would call a riot.

Re:Make the punishment fit the crime (2, Funny)

ooshna (1654125) | more than 4 years ago | (#33543884)

Probably to ensure that known violent football hooligans do not get tickets? I seem to recall reading some time ago that some of these violent hooligans were flat out banned from traveling to, let alone attending football games because their primary intent is to get drunk and brawl with rivals. And by brawl I don't mean a couple of drunks engaging in fisticuffs but mass fighting on a scale that we in the U.S. would call a riot.

That's b/c if any fight gets larger than a few people here in the U.S. a gun will almost always become involved.

Re:Make the punishment fit the crime (1)

Winckle (870180) | more than 4 years ago | (#33543922)

You almost sound proud of that fact.

Re:Make the punishment fit the crime (1)

ooshna (1654125) | more than 4 years ago | (#33543974)

There is no pride in it and no shame in it. But there is a hell of a lot less property damage in it.

Re:Make the punishment fit the crime (1)

mpe (36238) | more than 4 years ago | (#33544394)

Probably to ensure that known violent football hooligans do not get tickets? I seem to recall reading some time ago that some of these violent hooligans were flat out banned from traveling to, let alone attending football games because their primary intent is to get drunk and brawl with rivals.

I'm sure some of these thugs are perfectly sober when they get up to their violence. Also it's for the police to keep them traveling.

Re:Make the punishment fit the crime (1)

KingAlanI (1270538) | more than 4 years ago | (#33543112)

Passport would make for a form of ID even if other forms (drivers license, whatever) would also be accepted.
Maybe it's a way to 'encourage' fans to take care of that rather important preparation for going overseas to the event.

Re:Make the punishment fit the crime (1)

mpe (36238) | more than 4 years ago | (#33544374)

Keeping that sort of personal data for that long without any proper use for it shows either a heavy degree of incompetence or a desire to use it for their own promotions and that they are sour that "rogue" employees beat them to selling the information.

It's more likely the former probably in terms of "We never thought about getting rid of the data we collected". Along with "We never considered making sure we only collected the minimum data we actually needed or the maximum period of time each datum needed to be stored".
All too often with such "leakages" most of the data shouldn't have been there to leak.

FUD...? (1)

quangdog (1002624) | more than 4 years ago | (#33541856)

from TFA:

"Furthermore, I would assume that there is a large turnover of ticketing agency employees in 4 years – can every single employee since then up until now have gained access to this data? What about passwords – were they even changed during this time period? And a very important question – who has access to the data. Did every employee have access rights to the sensitive data?" Shulman added.

Fear!
Uncertainty!
Doubt!
While I think the media does all they can to sensationalize everything maybe in this case it is warranted?

Re:FUD...? (0, Troll)

Kristopeit, M. D. (1892582) | more than 4 years ago | (#33541934)

if you attempt to steal and sell my passport data to those that would steal my identity, i will kill you.

are you going to care if it was warranted when you're dead?

Re:FUD...? (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33541974)

Hippocrates much

Re:FUD...? (0, Flamebait)

Kristopeit, M. D. (1892582) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542126)

are you attempting to suggest my statement was hypocritical? because if you're not, then you're an idiot, because the hippocratic oath declares you can't kill people, as i stated i would... so not hippocrates at all.

do you not understand how mutual assured destruction works? there is nothing hypocritical about it.

you're an idiot.

Re:FUD...? (1)

neonmonk (467567) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542238)

M. D.
Medical Doctor.
Hippocratic oath.

You're the idiot.

Re:FUD...? (0, Troll)

Kristopeit, M. D. (1892582) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542278)

my name is MICHAEL DAVID, moron.

Re:FUD...? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33542368)

You have been reported to police.

Re:FUD...? (1)

Kristopeit, M. D. (1892582) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542434)

ur mum's face have been reported to police.

Re:FUD...? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33542484)

Second report from here - killing threads, some serious mental issues and aggressive behavior. This is going to land at least 70 years of jail for the dickfuck Kristopeit who's brain is now minimal size because of heroine and other drug abuse.

REPORT THIS PERSON TO YOUR NEAREST POLICE!

Re:FUD...? (1)

Kristopeit, M. D. (1892582) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542538)

ur mum's face is dickfuck

Re:FUD...? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33542694)

heh, you're funny. i nominate you for newfag of the year. should we send the award to you at kristopeit.com (i think you're a shoo-in)? and how is my favorite hussy rachel nee kovar? does she still do that thing with her toes when she's really enjoying it?

Re:FUD...? (1)

Kristopeit, M. D. (1892582) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542764)

ur mum's face is funny.

Re:FUD...? (1)

Dexter Herbivore (1322345) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542426)

Taking someone's joke a little too seriously there, aren't we?

Re:FUD...? (1)

Kristopeit, M. D. (1892582) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542452)

being an idiot isn't funny.

i am not with you... there is no "we"... you're an idiot.

can't fight your own battles without fictionalizing a group that agrees with you?

you are pathetic.

Re:FUD...? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33542806)

Excellent troll my friend.. my word youve done beautifully.

Re:FUD...? (1)

Kristopeit, Michael (1892492) | more than 4 years ago | (#33543040)

it is your idiocy that brings about the things i've done.

you are NOTHING

Re:FUD...? (1)

ooshna (1654125) | more than 4 years ago | (#33543906)

Now now boys get back to your desks before I have to call your parents. Michael what did I tell you about eating glue? I'm not going to give you a sticker at the end of class if you keep it up.

Re:FUD...? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33544066)

My kingdom for a mod point! That was hilarious - well played!

England v Germany (-1, Flamebait)

newDzerzhinsky (1806046) | more than 4 years ago | (#33541898)

So, some details of English football fans has been "leaked" by FIFA after the German World Cup Finals 4 years ago...

Get over it Englanders.....you are still a long, long way up on them after Bomber Harris and Dresden...

Hmmm....I think I might as well just give up and get a new account here after that drunken comment :p

Re:England v Germany (1)

John Hasler (414242) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542052)

"Never mention the war"

Why would FIFA have this data? (4, Interesting)

Kevinv (21462) | more than 4 years ago | (#33541946)

Why would FIFA even have passport data at all? At what point to they collect passport data from attendees? What happens if you refuse to show them your passport?

Re:Why would FIFA have this data? (4, Informative)

therblig (543426) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542032)

I believe it is because there are temporary and lifetime bans handed out to dangerously unruly football fans in Europe. The passport information is to help enforce these bans.

Re:Why would FIFA have this data? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33542336)

I believe it is because there are temporary and lifetime bans handed out to dangerously unruly football fans in Europe. The passport information is to help enforce these bans.

What could possibly go wrong?

Sheesh, way to make the US feel good about its privacy.

Re:Why would FIFA have this data? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33542490)

Why would FIFA even have passport data at all?

I believe it is because there are temporary and lifetime bans handed out to dangerously unruly football fans in Europe. The passport information is to help enforce these bans.

According to the article they have a lot more than just passport data on fans, and it isn't just hooligans, its EVERYBODY!

Too bad this seems to be so normal that the article and most people on Slashdot seem to be taking this collection of data as NORMAL!

It's bizarre. If I ever go to a sports game and somebody asks me for my passport, date of birth, driving record or any other personal peace of information I'm going to tell that person to "fuck off" and save my time and money on something useful (like beer or prostitutes).

If somebody is a criminal, or a "football hooligan" then they should just be placed on the "no fly list" or no-enter-country list. None of this guilty-before-proven-innocent bullshit, like with the trend of suspects of minor crimes being put into permanent fingerprint and DNA databases, things just go too far.

It's funny too because with these kind of rules, you'll notice that politicians, the rich, and celebrities are generally excluded, like with the U.S. watch lists (the un-redacted TSA manual can be found on Wikileaks), and the (former) law in Britain that required anybody who had contact with children be put on a database of potential child abusers (the law was worded more tactfully than I put it). Look up the references yourself here. These things were pointed out in other Slashdot stories.

Regards, Anonymous and Cowardly;

the AC

Re:Why would FIFA have this data? (2, Insightful)

jhol13 (1087781) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542762)

The data of those who are not banned need not be collected. But alas, it was.

Re:Why would FIFA have this data? (1)

techno-vampire (666512) | more than 4 years ago | (#33543182)

The data was collected because there was no other way to identify the hooligans.

Re:Why would FIFA have this data? (2, Insightful)

jimicus (737525) | more than 4 years ago | (#33543282)

The data was collected because there was no other way to identify the hooligans.

No, the GP's right. You could enforce it just as easily by keeping a blacklist of names and passport numbers and simply use it as a comparison - without actually storing the number you're checking.

Re:Why would FIFA have this data? (1)

Pastis (145655) | more than 4 years ago | (#33544020)

Even better: a blacklist of hashed names and passport numbers.

Haven't they heard of shadowed information ?

Re:Why would FIFA have this data? (1)

Geirzinho (1068316) | more than 4 years ago | (#33543564)

Absolutely! And it certainly doesn't need to be collected by private organizations either. If a hooligan commits a criminal offense, his data should be collected by the local police.

If a permanent ban from sports is needed, that information should be sent back to the authorities in the perpetrators home country according to international agreement.

For later matches, border control in the hosting country could then request a blacklist from each participating country.

Re:Why would FIFA have this data? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33543464)

The tickets for the worldcup were registered to a single person. So basically the person had to be checked against the ticket...

"Passport data"? (1, Interesting)

John Hasler (414242) | more than 4 years ago | (#33541952)

Why did FIFA have the "passport data" of fans at all?

Re:"Passport data"? (1)

iwaybandit (1632765) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542016)

Transfer of event tickets is prohibited?

Re:"Passport data"? (1)

John Hasler (414242) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542034)

What's that got to do with passport data?

Re:"Passport data"? (1)

iwaybandit (1632765) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542088)

The name on the ticket must match the passport. Either to reduce fraud or prevent scalping. Maybe all tickets purchased outside of South Africa were put on a "will call" list. This is purely conjecture on my part.

Re:"Passport data"? (1)

iwaybandit (1632765) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542092)

Err, Germany.

Re:"Passport data"? (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33542204)

Why does soccer have any fans at all?

Re:"Passport data"? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33542714)

Because there are trailer trash like you.

LOL parent marked insightful... (1)

ub3r n3u7r4l1st (1388939) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542778)

When did /. turned far right?

soccer bashing - come on now. (1)

KingAlanI (1270538) | more than 4 years ago | (#33543122)

they could just as easily bash your preferred forms of entertainment. Just as valid - or just as invalid.

How Dare They! (1)

Bob9113 (14996) | more than 4 years ago | (#33541990)

It is alleged that the details of more than 35,000 English fans -- who visited Germany for the 2006 World Cup -- had their passport and allied data sold to ticket touts for marketing purposes.

How dare they do this without being a corporation! Now I'm going to go use my Mastercard on Amazon, have essentially the same thing happen, twice, and nobody will say a word.

Admittedly, the passport data angle is a new twist, but the advertising companies that bought the data don't actually care about the passport number, just the mailing address.

Re:How Dare They! (1)

jimicus (737525) | more than 4 years ago | (#33543318)

Your credit card details can be changed in a flash at zero cost and relatively little hassle. It would be obvious very quickly if they were being abused and it's unlikely that a credit card on its own could be used as ID to take out other lines of credit.

Further, there's a mechanism to establish whether or not a card is valid built right into the entire system. How many merchants are still using those old-fashioned card swipers which don't connect to the bank? I think I've seen two in the last ten years.

Re:How Dare They! (1)

RobertLTux (260313) | more than 4 years ago | (#33544348)

are you talking about the imprinter? (big thing where you lay the card down put a credit slip on top and make it go THUNK to prove you had the actual plate during the transaction) Just about everybody taking credit cards should either have one of those or know one of about a dozen ways to do the same thing.

They must have a good alignment (1)

meteficha (1332195) | more than 4 years ago | (#33541994)

Are they caotic?

The Guardian covered this last week (4, Informative)

jayemcee (605967) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542074)

http://www.guardian.co.uk/football/2010/sep/05/fifa-passports-claims [guardian.co.uk] The most interesting bit is that Sepp Blatter's nephew is involved with the company at fault.

Re:The Guardian covered this last week (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33542198)

This is hardly interesting. The FIFA and DFB are infamous for being a breeding ground for shady deals and nepotism. More like business as usual.

Julian Assange... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33542080)

... will be charged with releasing the passport data in his attempt for 100% transparency of all government records, including passports, but he will deny it and claim that the data was actually stolen and then released by the CIA as part of the dirty tricks campaign against him.

This is what happens when companies are too big (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33542128)

I've worked for several "big" companies, and this is a common problem:
1. Outsourcing - Has too much access, particularly the Philippines and India are getting access to peoples SSN's, I still wonder why the hell any company outsources their customer service when the only thing they can use to verify the account is a SSN. Good god. These people should only be provided with the customer's first name, and electronic verification only (eg that ASSET TAG number on your PC), not be re-verifying the account. Hell customers should be warned they are speaking with a foreign call center and advised in the pre-call/hold message not to share personal information. Banks continue to be stupid about it.
2. Internal security is all an act - Sure your email might be monitored, but there isn't 1 supervisor for every 1 staff member. As with the story here, nearly all employees have too much access to sensitive information, and ---have the time to steal it---, if your staff is not on call/interacting with that customer, they should not have access to any customer information. If I really wanted to call the president of the US, all I had to do is type his name in, and then, write, yes with a pencil, it down on paper, and stick it my pocket. Yes I may get fired tomorrow if someone was watching, but nobody watches. Bored staff become curious staff, and curious staff who feel anger at someone may strike back.
3. "smart" employees may be your best defence, or you largest liability, it depends how you treat them. I've seen more staff who were capable of covertly stealing information, should they want to, also tell managers about it and managers shrug it off. God, this one supervisor at one place I worked (who was absent 30% of the time) couldn't understand even the most basic security problems. Staff start sharing passwords because of incompetency or too much complexity in the password system. One call center had me memorize 11 unique logins and passwords, some of the systems permitted or prevented certain combinations or reuse. Another only had 2 logins (one for the PC, one for the CRM) Can you guess which system got abused? The more complex one did. All it would have taken to lock out every employee out of that system is one simple VBscript to enter every employee name (first letter+last name) and the default password. What's worse at there was a metrics program designed to use this security flaw that would have stopped working.

No Primary Key (3, Informative)

Itninja (937614) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542166)

What exactly does my passport data reveal about me? Here's what (with US passports anyway):

- My name (for common names, no big deal)
- My birthday (kinda private, but I give i
- My gender
- My birthplace
- Where I got my passport (issuing authority)
- Date validity (when I got it and when it expires)

That's it.

My name is not exactly a secret (I give it to total strangers all the time). Plus, it's a common one in the US, so (obviously) a lot of people have it.
My birthday is kind of personal, but there very little someone could do with it without having more data.
My gender is easily guessable once you know my first name.
My birthplace lists only the country, and not the city. Useless.
My issuing authority is even less specific: 'US Department of State'.
Date validity is also useless.

It's not as if my passport lists my SSN, home address, credit history, or anything else that can be used to steal my money or identity. Perhaps they have a lot more personal info in other countries' passports, but not in mine.

Re:No Primary Key (1)

lul_wat (1623489) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542334)

Presumably there is a delivery address attached to the ticket orders. Not that I RTFA TBH FYI.

Re:No Primary Key (2, Informative)

jimicus (737525) | more than 4 years ago | (#33543352)

It'll also have a passport number, which means there's quite enough on there to produce a fake passport. It may or may not pass muster at international borders, but it'd almost certainly be adequate ID at a bank.

Clue: Anyone who wants to purchase 30,000 valid passport details almost certainly has the resources to get their hands on genuine blank passports from the country of their choice and print them appropriately. The only clue that the passport they produce would be fake would be the photograph, and even that may not be a problem if Fifa are reading the RFID chip on the newer passports.

Re:No Primary Key (1)

John Hasler (414242) | more than 4 years ago | (#33544116)

My birthday is kind of personal, but there very little someone could do with it without having more data. My gender is easily guessable once you know my first name. My birthplace lists only the country, and not the city. Useless.

All this is in your birth registration, which is public.

It's not as if my passport lists my SSN, home address, credit history, or anything else that can be used to steal my money or identity.

With the passport number, it's enough to produce a fake passport. In many places a passport serves the same function a driver's license does in the USA.

Current security is inadequate (1)

cgenman (325138) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542186)

For security, credit cards rely upon... nobody who has ever run your credit card being hacked. For security passports rely upon... nobody who has ever recorded your passport being hacked. This is just not secure! By design, this system can *never* adequately secure people's information, because information alone is not secure enough for a transaction.

Options:

Credit cards pass through a Visa or MC controlled layer. Visa or MC then authorize a new single-merchant / single client code combination, which will work at that merchant but no others. The merchant never sees the original credit card number.

A passport decryption chip, which takes the original passport number, a country request number, and munges it in subtle ways, so that the selected passport number relates the the specific person, but the passport country code is hidden within the resultant displayed passport number.

A 2nd piece of information that by agreement can never be stored, but can be used to permanently authorize a particular merchant. For example, the first time you purchased something from Amazon.com, you'd be required to enter your visa password through a visa-controlled interface. Afterwards, Amazon would be allowed to utilize your credit card. This would include recurring billing.

Re:Current security is inadequate (1)

mehrotra.akash (1539473) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542604)

A 2nd piece of information that by agreement can never be stored, but can be used to permanently authorize a particular merchant. For example, the first time you purchased something from Amazon.com, you'd be required to enter your visa password through a visa-controlled interface. Afterwards, Amazon would be allowed to utilize your credit card. This would include recurring billing.

doesnt this already exist in the form of VbV and secure3d??
except in that case you have to enter it for each transaction, and it is used only for Indian sites, foreign sites do not ask for the password.

Re:Current security is inadequate (2, Interesting)

jimicus (737525) | more than 4 years ago | (#33543402)

Security in the real world is seldom an absolute.

While you're absolutely correct that there's room for improvement, there will always be fraud. The bad guys aren't going to jack it in and take a respectable job just because you've made their life a little harder. Developing a layer to reduce that fraud costs a lot of money - it's easy to devise a theoretical solution, it's rather harder to ensure it'll work reliably with the millions of card users worldwide without significantly impacting on legitimate transactions. It's not something you can throw together in a week or so.

And when you've finished you'll have reduced one sort of fraud, which may well have an impact on others - the bad guys aren't going to retire simply because you've made their job harder.

So, questions have to be asked. Questions like "How much does this sort of fraud cost?" and "Are there cheaper ways of achieving the same end?". Given that fraud costs a lot of money, I guarantee you these exact questions are being asked.

Re:Current security is inadequate (1)

cgenman (325138) | more than 4 years ago | (#33544630)

I have been cardjacked recently, my fiancee has been card jacked, and most of our friends have had some degree of card fraud. Anecdotally at least, the problem seems endemic.

And while I agree that security levels cost money and require expensive changes, the security of credit cards was setup to be adequate for single-occurrence swiped transactions. For any sort of stored-on-server permanence, current credit card security is a 1960's solution to a problem that started in 2000. The security of the entire system relies upon the security level of the lowest server in the network. On a very large network, that's going to be a very low threshold.

"Room for improvement" makes it sound like a network that could more efficiently reduce overhead through intelligent optimizations. In this case, we have a system that is operating in an environment that not only it wasn't designed for, but that the designers of the original system couldn't have envisioned.

Really, the question isn't if fraud is endemic. The question is how much money is it worth throwing at the problem, and how much can you inconvenience people before they refuse your service. Oh, and if we can avoid the hackjob vendors selling useless iPhone enabled swipe passes and giving out free trips to CEO's in the interim. Unfortunately, there is a lot of "security" out there that is just a smoke-and-mirrors magic trick to extract money from suckers.

Not surprising (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33542276)

Lousy security will always allow employees access to this. So, what kind of OS does FIFA run? MS-7

Security of employees (1)

iONiUM (530420) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542292)

In this case, one of the staff members is selling the data off. Really, what's to stop this from occurring in government offices, or anything else? If price-to-gain > possible repercussions, then there is a chance staff will do something like this.

Working as a contractor, I have (many times) had access to very sensitive data. It's interesting how lax companies are with this stuff, and especially the government.. I think this story is just going to repeat again and again for governments, companies, etc (like it already has been). So, what's the real solution?

Why is your passport # needed to buy a ticket? (1)

Joe The Dragon (967727) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542534)

Why is your passport # needed to buy a ticket?

Re:Why is your passport # needed to buy a ticket? (2, Informative)

thegarbz (1787294) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542760)

I believe FIFA uses this to enforce international bans on some of the "special" fans. Think the English team in Euro Trip.

Re:Why is your passport # needed to buy a ticket? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33542884)

That was asked and answered above, fuckwit.

Hmmm (1)

Dexter Herbivore (1322345) | more than 4 years ago | (#33542846)

Sounds like someone ate all the pies.

Scalping itself... (1)

KingAlanI (1270538) | more than 4 years ago | (#33543170)

Okay, I understand that the data breach is the main point of TFA.
However, the rational economist in me finds it hard to get angry about scalping itself.
Either the lowered initial ticket prices are irrational, or rational in some non-obvious/non-direct manner.

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