Mailing List Archive

South African Bank "security"
Dear Full-Disclosure,

ABSA Bank South Africa, "a member of the Barclays Group", has a division named "ABSA stock brokers".  ABSA stock brokers sends out "secure email" for statements, etc.  This consists of an attached HTML form (plaintext) which submits a user name and password by https to, which displays the actual statement.

This, unfortunately, leaves ample room for rank outsiders to provide similar mail and collect passwords, if they can just get past that fiendishly complex base64 encryption.  The following sample of only slightly doctored "secure email" is provided for educational purposes only:

    Last week: vendor notified
    This week: publication

Vendor describes their security as follows at :

Absa Stockbrokers is committed to making sure that your online experience is safe and secure. Absa Stockbrokers uses multiple levels of security, and state-of-the-art Internet technology, beginning with your browser and ending with our own security infrastructure to ensure that access to your accounts is private and secure. Further information can be found under Security Centre on the main Absa website.

Secure Email: All contract notes (broker notes) and monthly statements delivered via email are encrypted for your protection. In order to decrypt the secure emails, the nominated email recipient is required to register on the Absa Stockbrokers website. See Secure Email under FAQ's. 

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