Microsoft Spills Customer Data

Wednesday, 20 November 2002, 6:55 PM EST

Microsoft took a public file server offline Tuesday after Internet users discovered that the system contained scores of internal Microsoft documents, including a huge customer database with millions of entries.

The file transfer protocol server ordinarily enables Microsoft customers to download drivers, software patches and other files, as well as to upload files to the company's PSS Security Response Team.

But an apparent configuration error, along with what experts say was an ineffective internal security policy, enabled the public to have full access to folders containing confidential company presentations, spreadsheets, internal reports and other company information.

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