About one month ago, I was singing the praises of match.com to anyone who would listen. After all, I met The Auteur through match. She alone has made a supporter of online dating sites.

Out of respect to our budding relationship, I decided to cancel my match membership a few weeks back. I was able to cancel my membership online, without needing to speak to an actual customer care rep.

Fast forward to earlier this week: I got an e-mail from match stating that my account had been re-instated; despite the fact that I had not been on the site once since I cancelled the account. This time, I decided to call customer care and speak to an actual human being.

When I called, their care rep was nice enough. She asked if I enjoyed my time on match. I explained to her that I actually met someone and was very happy with the entire match.com experience. At this point, my biggest concern was getting charged again for a service that I was not longer using. When I asked the rep how my account could have gone active again, she speculated ” maybe you accidentally re-logged into the account”. This left me a little dumbfounded, but she was helping me so I didn’t complain.

I like to pretend my hacking experience was this cool, but it doubt it

Fast forward again to yesterday: I get another email stating that my account had be re-instated. However this time, it is followed by another e-mail telling me that my username, e-mail address and date of birth have all changed.

Now, when I got the original e-mail earlier in the week, I informed The Auteur about it – in the event that the same thing happened to her once she cancelled. I forwarded her this new e-mail and asked her to look “me” up.  After searching, she informs me that, according to match.com, i a no longer a 39 year old man seeking woman.  On the contrary, I am now a 38 year old woman seeking men – all within  time it takes to make a few key strokes.  As match’s customer care line was closed for the night, I had to wait until Friday morning in the hopes that I could undo any damage my online identity might have incurred at this hands of this hacker.

To their credit, match’s customer care staff was great.  I explained the situation to the first operator I spoke with, she immediately got me over to their “corporate care” team, where I was informed that the account would revert to it’s pre-hack appearance status within 24 hours. (it took less than 12).  Furthermore, not only none of my financial information had been compromised, but I was also being refunded my full 3 month subscription fees.

As far as I can tell, the only damage done to my match.com username the 2 e-mails and 1 wink that were picked up…by guys…that were apparently picked up during the hacking.  Naturally, match would not tell me what had happened, so I can only speculate.  Having worked in customer care myself, I think it was an internal thing.  I suspect someone in the company – maybe even the first operator I talked about the first reactivation, saw a closed/inactive account that was paid up for two more months and decided they wanted a free ride.  To be honest, this pales in comparison to some of the things I’ve heard of people trying at my last customer service/call center job.

In the aftermath of all this, I went ahead and changed ALL , my various online passwords – mostly just for peace of mind if nothing else. In terms of tech savvy, I think I fall somewhere in the middle of the proverbial pack – more than some; a lot less than others.  But my list of suspects in this incident is short; and as far as I can tell this is an open and shut case.

I hope…

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