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Twitter’s PayPal integration for Tip Jar could expose email IDs, addresses: Report

Twitter currently offers Bandcamp, Cash App, Patreon, PayPal and Venmo as the payment options.

FILE PHOTO: The Twitter logo is displayed on a screen on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York City, U.S., September 28, 2016. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
FILE PHOTO: The Twitter logo is displayed on a screen on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York City, U.S., September 28, 2016. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid (REUTERS)

Twitter recently added a new feature that allows users to earn through tips sent by followers. The feature, however, is caught in an odd controversy after the integration of PayPal. Privacy researchers have raised concern stating users who get their tips through PayPal are at risk of their email addresses and physical addresses getting exposed, reports Protocol.

According to Rachel Tobac, one of the researchers to first voice concerns about the PayPal integration, it was Twitter’s responsibility to inform users about the latest feature and privacy implications.

ALSO READ: You can now tip your favourite accounts on Twitter through ‘Tip Jar’

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Twitter has taken cognizance of the loophole and has begun alerting users who send tips through PayPal.

"We can't control the revealing of the address on PayPal's side," Twitter's head of product explained, "but we will add a warning for people giving tips via PayPal so that they are aware of this."

Twitter, however, did not say that it would disable the PayPal integration. The Protocol report points out that Twitter’s strict rules on content that violate people’s personal information. Twitter’s rules also say that users who violate these policies may see actions such as locking of accounts or deletion of violating posts. Those who repeatedly violate the policy may even be permanently suspended from the platform.

PayPal, in the meanwhile, pointed out that users have two options to send tips on Twitter. Users can either sign up for payments for “goods and services” in which their details are shared or choose to sign up for payments for “friends and family.”

"This is the standard functionality of the PayPal app and we will work with Twitter closely to ensure user awareness," a company spokesperson said.

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