When it comes to getting a customer service issue resolved as quickly as possible, publicly tweeting at a company can be quite effective. You’d certainly hope, however, that the company wouldn’t respond by publicly sharing your sensitive data—as Southwest Airlines recently did on Twitter.
Ars Technica first reported on the privacy violation experienced this week by Jackie Singh, the CEO of cybersecurity consulting firm Spyglass Security. Singh on Wednesday tweeted at the company about inappropriate commentary by a male flight attendant that allegedly included “jokingly enticing passengers to select seats in the rear [plane emoji] with offers of free beer, free liquor, ‘younger women,’ and random negative commentary about his ex-wife.”
In since-deleted tweets, Ars Technica reported, a Southwest Airlines representative identified as “Emilia” responded not only with a tweet that included Singh’s flight number, but with an additional tweet that claimed that flight numbers—which can reveal the location of a passenger—do not constitute personally identifiable information, or PII. Emilia further told Singh she was “welcome to reach out to us privately in the future if you do not wish to discuss your travel publicly,” according to Ars Technica.