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United Airlines sells lists to spammers

2004-01-30 , ,

I noticed an uptick in spam over the past four days. Curiously, all of it
was destined for an email account I use only with United Airlines. Reviewing my logs and email, junk started trickling in on October 4th but I didn’t notice thanks to my filters. I remember setting my "Mileage Plus" profile to not send solicitations and offers when I created the account in June. That choice has been unset but not by me. United Airlines seems to violate its own privacy policy. See this passage currently in the privacy policy:

On occasion, we may provide customer mailing list
and email addresses to reputable, carefully-screened 
Mileage Plus partners or companies whose services 
or products may be of interest to you. (You may 
unsubscribe by Opting-Out.) Sharing of customer lists
may also provide you with the opportunity to earn 
bonus miles for non-flight activity. We require strict
contractual obligations from these third parties to
ensure safeguards for the privacy and security of the
information. 

Opting out obviously isn’t enough. Then there is the matter of the carefully-screened Mileage Plus partners who
include the sorts of people who sell "Viagra",
"Propecia", "Vicodin" and something named "Cialis". These strict contractual obligations that United Airlines requires of it’s partners also allows for marketing even more dubious products like "Mini Keychain breathalyzer", "Digital Cable Descrambler" and "Diploma in 1 Week".

It’s clear that United Airlines associates with a nice bunch of liars, cheats and thieves.

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