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Updated
May 21, 2024
Read Time:
3
 minutes

Discover How Flowcode Is Brand Safe Amongst QR Code Scammers

Using QR Codes
Discover How Flowcode Is Brand Safe Amongst QR Code Scammers
Flowcode Team
QR code scams are skyrocketing — discover how Flowcode is keeping brands safe


Over the past few months, there has been a seemingly unending stream of headlines highlighting concerns about QR code driven scams and malicious privacy schemes. It’s easy to lose trust, and, unfortunately, with any online activity you engage in, there’s a risk for information exploitation. But it’s also important to remember that Flowcode does more than anyone else to mitigate and protect against these risks, which is why we’re the trusted QR code platform of over 70% of Fortune 1000 companies.

Certifications and other indicators of trust exist across several industries, but the QR code industry lags behind when it comes to protecting businesses and consumers. QR privacy policies by providers aren’t regulated by a governing body, so choosing the right partner is of the utmost importance when it comes to your brand’s digital security.

Flowcode was built intentionally to protect businesses and their consumers. Most providers don’t prioritize security and privacy assurances, but we’ve put these assurances front and center. Whenever you see a Flowcode QR code, it’s branded and highlights our privacy policy, ‘privacy.flowcode.com’, upfront and before you scan —  you never have to worry about where that scan will take you, because our codes are created for consumer safety.

Let’s get into some of the details, to show you how:

What exactly happens when I scan a QR code?

Today, QR codes are scannable by all smartphone cameras. When you open your camera, it reads the code, a popup with a URL appears, and you click it. Instantly, you’re on a webpage predetermined by the creator of the code. This could direct you to an AR experience, an e-commerce website, a signup page, a menu, or just about anything.

However, while you get the benefit of a seamless connection, you’re also potentially opening up your mobile device to risk. Our smartphones are filled with sensitive information, from corporate logins to financial documents. That's why we all need to think twice about who we 'let in' through our smartphone's cameras.

Most generic QR codes are indistinguishable and the URLs that pop up when you scan a code don’t tell you where they are sending you – this can trigger actions you don’t decide to opt into, such as breaching your privacy without consent. Scanning an unidentifiable code can be a lot like opening your front door to a stranger. You don't know who is behind it or their intentions. Once inside, it's easy for hackers or others to gather sensitive information from your device or prompt you to enter it yourself.

Flowcode is the only provider who circumvents this issue. With our distinct brand labeling and privacy smile, there’s never a doubt to consumers about who is guiding this action and what they plan to do with it. We disclose all our privacy policies at the point of collection.

How exactly do QR codes affect my digital security and privacy?

QR codes themselves aren’t inherently dangerous. It’s the fact that QR codes direct us to other pages on the internet that poses a risk. Since QR codes are embedded in the larger internet ecosystem, interacting with them leaves you susceptible to all the same cybersecurity and data privacy risks that all online actions do. Like every other platform – from messaging platforms to banking websites –  QR codes (and the webpage they direct you to) are opportunities for others to gather sensitive information. URL redirects that you are prompted to click can be dangerous, gathering unwanted information and potentially sharing it with others. Recently, the FBI warned that QR is an increasingly attractive gateway for bad actors to hijack information from consumers.

1. Security concerns

These threats have to do with hackers and other bad actors manipulating URL redirects to scam businesses and consumers. This can take form in malware attacks or phishing attempts that unwittingly gather sensitive information or trick users into entering it with false websites. These threats are huge to businesses and consumers alike. As an additional way of avoiding phishing attacks, companies should also use an SPF generator and similar tools which will help verify and authenticate emails properly.

How does Flowcode protect your security?

1. Our machine learning model crawls and classifies all codes to automatically remove and ban fraudulent content, scams and bots.

2. The Flowcode Firewall stops all bad actors from accessing or creating codes without proper authentication.

3. Our platform utilizes single sign on to protect our partner orgs - confirming every login and user identity.

4. Our US Based Customer Success team performs a stringent QA process to identify bugs and threats.

2. Privacy breaches

 These breaches have to do with upholding consumers autonomy over their personal information. It isn’t uncommon that QR providers can gather information without consent, or re-share that information without disclosing it. We've all seen how our digital information has been commoditized in the past, and QR is no exception. While less dangerous than security breaches, having personally identifiable information, such as contact information unwittingly gathered and resold to countless telemarketers isn’t ideal (or fair) to anyone.

How does Flowcode protect your privacy?

1. Every code we make is privacy protected in compliance with CCPA and GDPR regulation.

2. Allows you to white label codes so your consumers know they’re engaging with a brand they trust.

3. Our US Based Customer Success team performs a stringent QA process to identify bugs and threats.

This is why QR providers play an instrumental role in keeping businesses and consumers safe. QR generators are at the root of each of these interactions. Working with a secure platform means you keep interactions secure, and can simultaneously increase trust with consumers by implementing robust privacy and security safeguards. 

——————

Let’s review a couple of major pieces of privacy legislation and how they impact your digital life:

GDPR: The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is a comprehensive consumer privacy law. It was drafted and passed by the European Union (EU), so if you live in the EU or your company targets EU residents, GDPR applies to you. This regulation requires that all consumers have full transparency in how their data is used, and it can only be used for purposes that are disclosed to the consumer. Also, all data must be stored and managed securely.

CCPA: Another key piece of privacy legislation is the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA). While it applies only to California residents, any organization that targets people in California is subject to CCPA. Plus, CCPA’s guidelines have inspired other legislation around the world. CCPA focuses on giving consumers the opportunity to know what personal data is being collected, opt-out of its sale, and request that it be deleted.

All these guidelines shape Flowcode’s privacy practices. We want to keep our customers and every single person who scans our codes safe and secure.

Most people don’t read the fine print, but with Flowcode, you don't even have to — you are always protected. We aim for transparency so both marketers and consumers can easily identify a secure Flowcode and feel confident with every scan.

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