It’s time to say goodbye to Bit.ly

Don’t get this backwards; they’re still very much alive… but they are dead to me. Today marked the second time in the last few months I’ve emailed them to notify them that their service was being utilized to facilitate a phishing campaign. Both times now they have simply ignored me.

No response.

Nothing.

I notified them on April 5th of one of these links. They never replied. That link still exists today though my emails to the hosting provider and the site owner seemed to have landed on someone’s listening ears as their compromised Drupal install was fixed and updated soon after. The phishing link just takes you to the previously-compromised site’s homepage now but it should have been taken down by Bitly.

Today? Well I got a nice auto-emailer this time at least saying thanks for the email but the link continues to get clicked on by unsuspecting users. At the time of writing more than 2,200 clicks have been registered.

They have nothing listed on their knowledge base about phishing though spam is mentioned. Their support auto-emailer lets you happily know it may take two business days for them to get back to you. More than enough time for a phisher to gather tens of thousands of people’s information.

I’ve once again emailed the hosting provider and the domain registrar. No responses from anyone yet but I happen to use the same registrar for a couple of my domains so I’m hoping to get… something… back.

The phishing site is of lower quality this time, at least. Hopefully some people notice the ‘Finish’ button is instead labeled ‘Finnish’ but if they actually clicked on some random Bitly link sent to them via SMS… chances are low.

Phishing site

Hopefully the hosting provider takes notice.

To my original point; it’s time to let Bitly die on the vine if they can’t even acknowledge their part in the theft of user’s personal information and do something to thwart the thieves taking advantage of their service. They have been given the opportunity to stop a phisher in their tracks and they chose to look the other way.

Just stop trusting Bitly links. If the RickRolls weren’t enough to convince you; this should be.

Bitfail logo

Update 23 June 2016: The only company involved that has responded was the registrar who did so not long after the hosted site stopped responding. Better than silence.

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