You must leave a mark after you bought it, and you will continue to receive spam SMS

How can buyer privacy be held in the hands of online stores

  Our reporter Cao Zheng, intern Fu Ziyue

  "Season-end special sale, clearing straight down", "5000+ big brands 1% off", "88 Member's Day, start at 0:00"...... As long as you leave the receiving mobile phone number in online shopping, you will receive e-commerce platforms and merchants one after another. Marketing promotion SMS.

To catch up with the shopping festival, mobile phones will be "madly bombarded" by such text messages.

  Why can merchants continuously push information to buyers?

Reporters have investigated for several days and found that on e-commerce platforms such as Tmall and, a large number of online shops frequently send promotional text messages for a long time after receiving customer calls, but the customers do not know or agree.

Behind this is the lack of effective protection of key private information such as consumer phone numbers and addresses on e-commerce platforms.

Online shopping is bombarded by business text messages

  "Because most of the messages are spam, I don't look at text messages anymore. If you catch up with the "Double Eleven" and "6·18" shopping festival, your mobile phone will seem to be "bombed" by an online store." Mr. Zheng, a citizen, turned on his mobile phone. SMS, which is full of all kinds of spam messages.

  On Ms. Guo's mobile phone, there are a lot of promotional text messages such as "Only one day left to receive the 8.18 large allowance". Some text messages are marked with the name of the online shop.

She told reporters that she did buy things in these stores from the name, but some of them were in stores a few years ago: "Is it because I consume once, so I will be harassed frequently by them?"

  The reporter noticed that the end of the advertising message will be accompanied by the words "Respond to T/TD SMS Unsubscribe".

But in reality, some consumers encounter the "word game" of merchants. For example, when they encounter "reply to TD to unsubscribe", replying to "TD" can't really unsubscribe, only replying to "reply to TD" can be done.

  "Unsubscription is based on my subscription. Since I don't have a subscription, the merchant shouldn't send it to me at will. Now it turns into a merchant to send it at will, and finally let me unsubscribe." Mr. Zheng calculated it. , There are at least 30 or 40 online stores on the mobile phone. If you unsubscribe one by one, it will not only be time-consuming and laborious, but you must also bear the cost of sending unsubscribed text messages.

Consumers can’t refuse in advance without knowing it

  As one of the privacy of consumers, how does the merchant get the mobile phone number?

  "You have purchased store goods." When the reporter asked this question, the customer service staff of a flagship store selling backpacks on Tmall directly sent the previous order information, clearly marked with the name and phone number of the recipient when shopping. , Address and other information.

The customer service of many other online shops also said that the online shops use the system to push text messages to consumers who have previously shopped.

  However, when consumers place an order and fill in the receiving phone number, they do not know that they will continue to receive promotional text messages from merchants in the future.

Tmall’s official customer service staff responded that after the consumer places an order, the merchant will automatically recognize the consumer as a member of the store, and subsequently send marketing text messages to the recipient number, but the consumer cannot check whether he is willing to accept it when placing the order. Short message.

  In fact, the "Administrative Regulations on Communication Short Message Services" that have been implemented since 2015 clearly require that short message service providers and short message content providers must not send commercial short messages to users without their consent or request.

  However, in reality, consumers often neither know about it nor can they choose to reject it before accepting the marketing text messages from these online stores.

"If you don't want to receive such information again, buyers can contact the merchant, or contact the operator to block spam messages." Tmall customer service said.

Jingdong customer service introduced that the system can directly set the buyer to reject such marketing information, but the buyer needs to contact the customer service to set it up.

  For merchants, SMS promotion is a low-cost marketing tool.

But on the other hand, the accuracy of text messages is extremely high.

He Yanzhe, deputy director of the Evaluation Laboratory of China Electronics Standardization Institute Network Security Center, explained that, in addition to low cost, SMS promotion is more accurate than other Guangsanet customer acquisition models, and the reach rate is also high. Many businesses are happy to promote SMS.

Behind the loopholes in e-commerce privacy protection

  What is more worrying is the lack of more effective protection for consumers' private information such as phone numbers and addresses.

Many consumers told reporters that even if there is no consumption in a few years, they will still receive business promotion information. Does this mean that private information such as the buyer's phone number will be held in the hands of the business for a long time?

  "Once an order is placed, this information will always be recorded." said a customer service staff of a Tmall flagship store selling food.

Another company customer service said that the goods sold are guaranteed for three years. If there is no order information, the purchase information cannot be inquired, so the relevant information will be retained.

  The official customer service of Tmall introduced that the order information will be automatically covered 3 months after the order is placed, and the merchant will not see the order information including the receiving phone number. When after-sales service is required, the buyer provides the order link after the merchant To find the relevant information.

JD’s official customer service did not know how to protect the privacy information of the order, and said it needed to know more.

  There are loopholes in this privacy protection mechanism.

The reporter contacted a Tmall flagship store that had been consumed half a year ago, and the customer service staff directly sent a screenshot of the order verification information at that time, clearly marked with the recipient's name, phone number and address.

  "E-commerce platforms should be responsible for the privacy protection of consumers, and the processing of relevant information should set a certain period of validity." He Yanzhe said that after the agreed period has passed, the consumer's telephone and other private information should not be seen by the merchant, or Remind merchants that they can no longer use it, but such a privacy protection mechanism should also satisfy after-sales service.

He also suggested that e-commerce platforms can set options in advance, and consumers can choose whether to accept relevant promotional information when placing an order.