WestJet has announced that it is looking into “technical issues” after news that its mobile app allowed some users to access the highly personal data of others.
Users of the airline’s app told CBC News that they could see others’ profile information, including their phone numbers, home addresses, birthdates, email addresses, WestJet dollars and flight voucher details. Some have also revealed that they could see the last four digits of another user’s credit card number.
The news outlet reached out to WestJet, which responded with an email statement explaining that the company discovered "a technical issue was identified that impacted guest profiles on the WestJet App” at around 3:53 pm MT. The company spokesperson added that the issue was resolved at 4:27 pm MT.
However, WestJet app users Paul Baines and his partner Victoria Angus argued that the issue lasted an hour longer than the time the airline had indicated.
"When I went into my profile, the profile had some random person's name," Angus told CBC News. She added that she could see the other person’s contact information and some of their credit card information. Angus also said that when she chose to check her member information, she saw the personal information of yet another user.
"Four or five times this was happening that it was randomly putting in different profile information every time I refreshed the screen."
Baines, who is from London, England, also confirmed with CBC News that when he used the app, he could see the last four digits of another user’s credit card.
"There was enough information that if you had a nefarious actor, you could have done damage to people's data records," Baines said.
"We take the privacy of our guests extremely seriously and will continue to provide updates to our guests as required," a spokesperson for WestJet said in a statement.
The airline did not respond to CBC News’ inquiries on how many consumers were affected by the issue, nor how many users’ information was shared.