Sunday, June 28, 2015

Tomato Ketchup brought you to an adult website

Heinz, a world famous company as a tomato ketchup provider, made an apology for unintentional guiding customers to a pornography website.

This incident occurred in Germany. When a customer scan the QR code printed on the package of the tomato ketchup to see the information of this item, he was astonished to know that he was led to a hardcore pornographic site.

International Business Times: Heinz apologises for faulty ketchup bottle QR code that sent man to porn site

Actually, Heinz's ownership of the domain name described in the code expired in 2014. And the domain was bought by a German adult side. Heinz had missed to rewrite the QR code.

Some domains previously possessed by a famous company are often dealt with an attention. Such domains are likely to gather many accesses, some of which by customers who visit the site unintentionally. The issued adult website companies seemed to prioritize the superficial web traffics to gaining a cool domain name.

There are more malicious cases. Some fraud companies mislead users to a mock website of famous companies with a similar domain name: e.g. I heard that Amazon bought the right of using this confusing domain to prevent such a trick. If a fraud company gains profit from a bogus name of Amazon, its brand would be damaged.

I think Heinz was somewhat careless. Besides the missing to renew the label, it should keep the domain not to let other companies succeed it. I guess that its old domain of a bid company as Heinz was considerably valuable for underground companies.

By the way, I was surprised that some months passed after the domain expired till this incident. Were there any users having noticed about this? The advertising effect of the QR code is questionable.

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