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Folk Fest registration: Registrants express anger over sharing private data to third party

  • Published at 11:19 pm November 14th, 2019

Some registrants received an email from Dmoney saying their accounts have been created

People have expressed anger and discontent on the social media over sharing of personal data of registrants of Dhaka International Folk Fest (DIFF) with a third party named Dmoney.

DIFF, a three-day event which began on Thursday at the Bangladesh Army Stadium, is free for all who registered via shohoz.com, the online registration partner of the event.

The partner asked attendees to provide the scanned copy of their National ID or passport to register, among other details, and reportedly shared those with Dmoney Bangladesh Ltd.

Dmoney is a newly-launched digital financial service company, and the official digital payment partner of the event.

The incident triggered anger over social media after some attendees received an email from Dmoney mentioning that their accounts have been created with the service.

The email, shared on social media by different registrants, reads: “Registration successful. Wallet ID PIN: Please keep your PIN secret.

“You will be notified once your NID and bank information are verified.”

“Opening up a digital wallet without the user's permission is not only a violation of user rights and privacy but also exposes the user to various security threats, including identity theft,” Nafis Mahmud Reza, a DIFF registrant said in a post on Facebook.

“Neither Shohoz nor the organizers of DIFF has the right to share sensitive information like NID with a third-party without my explicit consent,” his post added.

However, in the registration process, prior consent was taken from those who registered through a clause in the terms and conditions.

Although an aggrieved registrant claimed that most of those who registered “did not even notice it.”

“Shohoz is vendor of the tickets on behalf of the owner [DIFF]. We just took the identity data for security purpose. DIFF had the strict directives to take those,” Maliha Quadir, the founder and managing director of Shohoz, told Dhaka Tribune.

Denying the allegation of sharing information with Dmoney, she said: “Now with whom the DIFF shared the info, that is for them to decide. We have nothing to do about it.”

Dmoney, on the other hand, expressed regrets over the incident through a press statement.

About the email over opening up a digital wallet of the registrant, it said: “We have investigated the matter and found that the email was accidentally sent by Dmoney to a few DIFF 2019 registered attendees...”

“This message is to clarify and confirm that Dmoney account has NOT been created for ANYONE.”

In another press statement, DIFF authority said that Shohoz did not share any information with any other party except for the DIFF authorities.

DIFF authorities also said, they only shared name, email address and phone numbers of the registered participants with Dmoney.

“No NID or any other personal information of the registered person were shared with any partners and no DMoney account has been created for any registered participants,” the statement read.

However, the authority claimed that the information were taken for security reason to support law enforcement agencies.