Your Toutapp Private Data in Google’s Index
UPDATE: Within an hour of my email being sent to Toutapp, they removed my report and account. I would still like to see them block their site from search engine traffic and bots. SPAM bots don’t care about robots.txt files, so this is still a poor practice of publishing this information freely. ToutApp should require a login to see private information.
A few minutes ago, I just had a business partner contact me that when they searched their name on Google, a report from Toutapp appeared in the results. Sure enough, I tested it and there was the report in all its glory! This particular business partner’s industry is severely restricted by regulations. The fact that his name could be associated with our business could raise questions and, now, impact whether or not we continue to do business with them.
I didn’t expect this. When I read the FAQs and Privacy Page, it was quite clear that the data was only available through a private URL that I could share with others.
Well, that’s obviously not the case. My guess is that I may have shared the link via social media and now the page is being indexed by Google. In viewing the page contents, there is not a NOINDEX meta tag… and worse, the Robots.txt file appears to be totally commented out. As a result, Google has full permission to index the site and pages… your data… and the data of your email recipients.
A simple search of the site shows a number of the Year in Review pages have already been indexed by Google. Worse yet, there’s no way for me to unpublish my report. I’ve contacted Toutapp through their website to immediately remove the report.
Was it my fault that the data got published? I suppose it could have been… but ToutApp needs to make it very clear in their instructions if this information AND the information about your email recipients is going to be published. Also interesting is that they’re publishing email addresses out there unobfuscated… great for SPAMMERS to pick up and run with.
Toutapp needs to immediately offer a means of deleting a report. Otherwise, this may be a lawsuit waiting to happen.