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COMMENT | Boomerang offering £12 Payback Points and "Legend" status as compensation for "website issues"

Matt Gardner
Boomerang Rentals, Game Rentals, Hackers

COMMENT | Boomerang offering £12 Payback Points and "Legend" status as compensation for "website issues"

After allegations that Boomerang Rentals' customer accounts were compromised earlier this month -- a fiasco that led to mysterious, unauthorised transactions popping up in the statements of a number of Boomerang's customers -- it seems that the site is back up and running, sort of. And as recompense for "the recent website issues", the company is issuing a rewards package that'll see those affected get "£12 worth of Payback Points and exclusive access to bonus games."

Yup, thousands of pounds have gone missing, but it's okay folks, because now you can get a little upgrade badge for your account that'll read "Legend". And people didn't think this was being taken seriously.

Oh Boomerang.

Initial reports pointing towards a possible breach appeared on Reddit a week ago, and it wasn't long before others started noticing a trend in fraudulent activity. Boomerang initially alleged that it would be "very unlikely someone could retrieve your card details", but this position swiftly changed, the site was taken down for maintenance on Monday 12th, and the following statement was issued:

"Following an initial enquiry at the end of last week, we have had a number of customers raise concerns regarding fraudulent payment attempts on their card details that are also registered with us. We are fully investigating this issue and have temporarily removed access to our website while this continues. We have contacted our Payment Provider Sagepay and our Merchant Bank World Pay and neither have any reported concerns relating to us. However, please be assured we are treating this with the utmost urgency and can provide more information on our findings as they become available. If you have any concerns, please contact your card issuer. We apologise for any inconvenience the removal of our site has caused and thank you for your patience as we continue to investigate further."

This did not go down well, with a number of customers announcing that they'd be terminating their accounts with Boomerang, slamming the company for failures in communication and not dealing with the situation swiftly enough. At the time of writing, it seems that Boomerang are still yet to send out a blanket email to their customer base informing them of the situation.

The site is now back online with limited functionality, and Boomerang have rolled out a compensation package that includes offering £12 of reward points (£4 a month for three months) along with access to three months of free Bonus Games, an initiative that allows you to rent additional games at no extra cost.

Apparently, you'll also get your account upgraded to "Legend" status.

Here's what you have to do to become a Boomerang "Legend":

"Please email us on [email protected] and head you email “I am Legend” and we will sign you up as quickly as we can. Please use your Boomerang account email address."

We're sure that legendary status will be a comfort to those currently mired in anti-fraud processes to try and get back the hundred, and in some cases thousands, of pounds that have gone walkies. Though Boomerang's culpability is somewhat grey in this regard, the communication from the company to their consumers has been nothing short of abysmal, with this compensation package proving needlessly convoluted. That they've attempted to assuage people with feeble remuneration through a smattering of reward points before the site is even back to full stability, and before they've sent round an official email (how has this not been done?!) is ludicrous. Although the move has been towards replacing encrypted card details with a tokenisation scheme and PayPal, the fact remains that there's a large consumer base that's not only incredibly disgruntled, but also missing a fat chunk of cash that they might not manage to retrieve.

And a badge that says "legend" won't change either of those things. Contacting your entire customer base (not just those who check Facebook) and making sure this never happens again is surely more important that chucking points at people and shouting "please love us again".

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