Students in China Jailed over Exploiting KFC App Glitch

https://kitchen.nine.com.au/latest/students-jailed-in-china-...
(among other news sources)

Jail (gaol) time for abusing a glitch to get thousands worth of KFC over 6 months…

Thoughts?

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Comments

    • +47 votes

      The main reason for jail is "selling food to others for low prices and making a profit."

      •  

        So it's perfectly legal as long as they didn't sell it?

        • +44 votes

          I think there's a fine line between misuse and fraud.

          Using that UberEats 'hack' that was posted here to get free delivery was grey area misuse for personal use. Once you make that into an enterprise to make money off it, that changes to intentional fraud.

          Where that line sits exactly isn't for us to decide though, that's pretty much what the mentioned court did.

        • +5 votes

          No, but that takes them from the murky grey zone to blatantly fraud.

        • +2 votes

          If you are asking if the same practice were caught here then fair enough.

          But are you seriously asking what is legal in CCP governing China?

          One thing we all need to be beware of is, do not use our common law / common sense to judge what happens in China.

          Also do not expect people inside or come from the great wall to understand our system straight away either.

    • +10 votes

      Yes they new what they were doing was gaining an advantage but that shouldn't be on the end user.

      So they knew they were committing fraud ("gaining an advantage by deception"), but it shouldn't be their responsibility?

      Imagine there were no computers involved…
      You can get free coffee at Maccas by dressing up as a cop.
      If you carry a clipboard and say you're from the Red Cross, people will give you cash.
      If you wait at a shop's loading dock wearing high vis, you can sign to receive for a shipment and then just put it in your car.

      These are all just exploiting bugs in people's brains, and they're illegal.
      Obviously, yes, the KFC voucher computer system was deficient, but that's not a carte blanche.

      • -5 votes

        Cops don’t get free coffee

        •  

          but I guess you can get stuff for free if you are friends with manager. People are people, you can't stop people for doing people stuff. ^_^

      • +1 vote

        There's laws against impersonating a police officer and surrounding accepting donations.
        Exploiting a bug isn't jail time in itself.

        • +2 votes

          Exploiting a bug isn't jail time in itself.

          Correct, but fraud and theft are.

          If the bug changed the colour of the app icon or made a silly notification message pop up, there would have been no punishment. (I hope!)

    • +8 votes

      Imagine thinking "exploiting a system for personal gain through unintended means" isn't literally the definition of fraud

      • +1 vote

        OzB exploits "price hacks" all the time though. I remember earlier this year there were links going around that exploited the KFC app backend to get things for free or for cheap.

        From the information in the article, these students basically kept getting coupons for free food because KFC's social media account kept generating them when they opened it. This sounds a lot more like an oversight by KFC than something the students should be liable for.

        Does turning that into a side hustle turn it into a crime? I dunno.

  •  

    Is this ‘news story’ actually legit? It seems too ludicrous to be true. Here in Australia, for the first six months (or so) after ‘Hungry Jacks’ released their ‘app’ it was possible to acquire free ‘beef-n-bacon burgers’ pretty much at will, if you ‘navigated their app in a certain way. That was definitely NOT the fault of the users whom Hungry Jacks actively invited to use their app, and very wisely, after fixing up the problem, Hungry Jacks never pretended that it was.

    Again, are we certain that this news story is even legit’? I would be very surprised if KFC is even remotely endorsing the incarceration of young people as a result of them having used an app that KFC themselves created. That would be an extremely bad look, globally.

    If this is actually what has happened, I trust that in order to preserve their own global image KFC will take strong and swift measures to reassure China that the problem was essentially a result of KFC’s app (not these young people who have been erroneously imprisoned), and that appropriate remedial measures should be taken … i.e. all these young people should be immediately released without charge or any further encumbrance of any kind.

        • +6 votes

          Citation required where stealing chicken got someone extradited

          Circa 1788, England

          I believe they named them 'convicts'. Sent them to some island somewhere.

    • +1 vote

      Is this ‘news story’ actually legit?

      Pick your News site flavour of choice

    • +6 votes

      Again, are we certain that this news story is even legit’? I would be very surprised if KFC is even remotely endorsing the incarceration of young people as a result of them having used an app that KFC themselves created. That would be an extremely bad look, globally.

      Well, yeah, crazy shit like this happens in China all the time. People are jailed for waaaaay less than this over there.

      That would be an extremely bad look, globally.

      Yeah, China doesn't care.

      •  

        People gets killed for minor possession of marijuana.

      •  

        'Yeah, China doesn't care.'

        I meant that it would be an extremely bad look for KFC. KFC should step in and 'grease some palms' in China, to get these kids sprung out … perhaps on a court order that forces them to work for KFC for free for a year, or something like that. It is my understanding that greasing palms can have dramatic effects in China …

        • +1 vote

          Yeah, KFC doesn't care either.

        •  

          If by 'dramatic effect' you mean arrest and execution… Then yes you are correct.

    • +2 votes

      Pretty sure if you tried turning that Hungry Jacks loophole into a business to sell the food you were getting for free you would almost certainly end up in legal trouble here too, possibly even Gaol.

  •  

    Too harsh government.
    Company should be paying for bug fixers rather than taking money from individuals by punishing.

    This is very common to those eBay glitches

    • +7 votes

      You're forgetting this is China here, where Facebook etc and criticising the CCP is illegal.

      •  

        Yeah those CCP guys are monsters.

        freeross.org

        • +1 vote

          It would be nice if such things like freeross.org was allowed in China.

          • +3 votes

            @Ughhh: Can someone from China confirm that it isn't? We were there a couple of years back and no problems getting to websites using a VPN. Also, given the last 12 months the western nations aren't in a position to lecture anyone else about censorship. :)

            (I'm not defending China, just pointing out that the only difference between China and western governments is just a mater of degree. They are all scum IMO)

            • +2 votes

              @EightImmortals: You shouldn't have to use a 'loophole'/VPN to access basic information, its not even wikileak level information. News and media shouldn't also be censored.

              Also, given the last 12 months the western nations aren't in a position to lecture anyone else about censorship. :)

              "Scomo looks like Shrek" — you wouldn't be allowed to say the equivalent in China.

              •  

                @Ughhh: I'm not disagreeing with you. As I said, it's all a matter of degree and there has been talk this year of making criticism of Aussy politicians and policies a crime as well.

              • -4 votes

                @Ughhh: Here you get jailed for filming a dying police officer

                •  

                  @belongsinforums: Is that fair in your opinion? Would it be OK if it was a regular civilian like your child or mother?

                  • -1 vote

                    @Ughhh: You wouldn't get jailed here for filming a regular person

                    •  

                      @belongsinforums: So if your child was badly injured in a car accident, you would be ok if people just stood and filmed it? Take some snapchats and make some youtube dollars?

                      Pusey was charged for a number of things, including dangerous driving and speeding btw.
                      The 'filming' atc was charged under "outrages public decency"- its is not specific for situations where victims are police, the charge is applicable to regular people too.

                      • -3 votes

                        @Ughhh: Naïve to think the status of them being police officers didn't have any effect on sentencing and prosecution

                        •  

                          @belongsinforums: I didn't say that. I'm just stating the charges.

                          I guess Pusey was unlucky, if you /your family was the victim Instead, you would be OK with him filming you /your family dying and let him go? Yes or no?

                •  

                  @belongsinforums: One should definitely get jailed for filming a dying police officer, rather than helping them survive.

              •  

                @Ughhh: I think it is necessary to contain hatred and false news especially when you have a citizen of 1.5b. Social media today can be use for good, for bad, to destroy, to make someone suicidal, to manipulate…..look at Elon Musk if a person can wipe 400 plus billion with one tweet imagine riots, amok and etc.

                I believe they censored news prevent people trying to sabotage as it is like a wild fire, once its out it is difficult to contain. Other than that the government does allows vpn so I would say it is a smart way to delay foreign news. Singapore government has censored news because the western media writing bad things about their country with fake news….why would any country allowed or want that?

                Points to the USA for current historical examples.

                Western media control or you can also say censored by banning the persons account is about the same at a micro level.

                Humans are like apes….monkey see, monkey does and the news and media is a dangerous manipulator. Humans unfortunately are getting dumber with technology, making them lazier and accepting truth by watching or reading news.

                We live in a world of full of deceit and conspiracy.

                ….yeah back to KFC… that is harsh for somebody to manipulate and profit the system, unfortunately he is made as a warning to the citizens. Never know he could be recruited by the CCP to improve his hacking skills.

                • +1 vote

                  @luffyex2010: I don't disagree with you, a balance between control and complete freedom is required. Every leader is worried about their position and having their power taken away, some more easily threatened than others. Control is a way to contain power.
                  However, here you can Google research yourself, form your opinion and question/discuss about it. You can challenge and put some pressure on scomo (provided its not done by violence or passing off your opinions as facts) . This "privilege" may get you arrested, or affect your ability to get a job/loan etc etc in China.

                  It is unfortunate that people often only seek info that validates them and their views. Facebook algorithms tend only show you things you and your friends viewed/like, it's all good if it's cat videos, but if it's conspiracy stuff, you'll only see one side. I remember seeing a doco about flat earthers. Are the majority of members there because they truly believe it or are they there to feel part of a tight community?

                  Western media control or you can also say censored by banning the persons account is about the same at a micro level

                  As in forums? Like how you can be banned on ozb?
                  Well if you go into a more micro level. Your mother probably banned you and anyone from Swearing at her house. Maybe banned you from eating too much chocolate when you were a kid.

                  •  

                    @Ughhh: Trump tweet account got permanently banned 😂🤣
                    Twitter will keep the banned even if he were to run again for office.

                    He is a dangerous charismatic person.

              • +1 vote

                @Ughhh: "you should not use a loophole/VPN to access basic information?" What you think of what Trump try to do to Tiktok, wechat and many other Chinese apps? Even Biden did not lift these ban and even go to court to fight what Trump left.

                Furthermore, why China ban google facebook is because google and facebook do not want to adhere to Chinese law. But in Tiktok and wechat cases they bended over backward to comply American law and American still want to ban it

                •  

                  @jowu15:

                  Tiktok, wechat and many other Chinese apps?

                  Yes. Tiktok is a great source of basic information. Why even go to school.

              •  

                @Ughhh: apparently you don't read much otherwise you might have noticed the defamation industry currently driven by coalition politicians or the free speech legal restrictions introduced by them on registered charities.

                keep watching fox…

                •  

                  @petry: Is it a fact that everyone who disagrees with you watches FOX? Or did you pull this out of your arse?

                  Have you tried not attacking people and being nasty in general In discussions? I can't take you seriously without being worried thinking R U OK?

                  •  

                    @Ughhh: nothing nasty in what i wrote above - but your comments above are ….as usual

                    •  

                      @petry: Haha, you're delusional.

                      R U OK?

                      Edit: ignoring what you can't answer again re Fox

                      •  

                        @Ughhh: you just keep on belching the hate mate, your comments above to me and others show everyone the truth.

                        •  

                          @petry: I cant wait for you to accuse me of supporting genocide and torture for [insert something creative]. I get it now, this is how you express your love, everyone may see your defamation as hate, but it's really love. 😘

      • +2 votes

        How is it illegal when the China's constitution allows free speech? /s

    • +7 votes

      I think Australian citizens coming into Australia from India is going to be fined $60,000 and sent into the prison for 5 years is much harsher than this?

      •  

        I would say it is for the goverment measurement of containment. They….just dont have a plan or want to risk the rest of the people of Australians get infected..

        Looking at the Darwin quarantine and the reject of positive patients they still do not have confidence of the hotel quarantines and containing this indian strain virus.

        Unfortunately it was a delayed rescue but currently right thing to do for the greater good of the Australian economypeople….

        "Nobody gets left behind!…..unless you are sick, we will come back for youuuu when you recovered!"

        This bloody virus is just mutating every time….hope it is not the reason for extinction of mankind.

        • +2 votes

          “Right thing to do” to ignore human rights and let Australian citizens die in another country? Does Australian government has any ground to criticise other countries for not having human rights and why is this ‘manipulating KFC app goes to jail’ even worth posting here to begin with when it is nothing compared to what Australian government has done to its citizens?

          • +1 vote

            @wtfnodeal: Like I say, I think the government needed time to decide, they are not ignoring for sure because you know this, it is a western government and careful procedures need to be discuss and decide before it can implemented. Our government has no ill will to delay or leave our fellow australians abroad they just take time….sometimes longer than we hope for.

            Think of NBN, how long it took to implement and hiccups along the way. So far although it is slow, our country is very safe from covid 19 with its low numbers.

            Human rights is for sure important but rushing and may cause ( history always repeats it self) the new strain to pass and infect the other majority Australians which have also endure alot and is just not justifiable.

            I honestly grief with the australians in India but sometimes you have to look at the bigger picture. A tragedy happen and you have a choice to save your kids or your wife which one will you save. In the end everybody wants to be safe.

            •  

              @luffyex2010: So you agree to ignore a small group of people’s human rights and so the larger group of people’s human rights are upheld? The outbreak began a year ago and I have not heard any countries other than Australia to have a law to fine and imprison it’s citizens for returning to their countries.

              • +2 votes

                @wtfnodeal: Common man I just wrote a short essay…just mentioned earlier they are not ignoring human rights. Our government is just slow in responding and the fine and imprisonment is to stop random people from flying back uncheck from India into the different states.

                It is a preventive measurement to make sure we dont go full lockdown again, our economy cannot sustain another hit. It is that fragile.

                What is human rights?
                "Human rights are moral principles or norms for certain standards of human behaviour and are regularly protected in municipal and international law. "

                The good news 90 Australians are ain Darwin doing their quarantine.

                I am no expert in epidemiology but if I see Australia is one of the safest country to be at the moment, the government is doing something right. Sorry if you have love ones stuck in India, it is a very unfortunate tragedy.

                •  

                  @luffyex2010: mate the aussie government has been ignoring aussies in trouble abroad for over 30 years that i know of…nothings changed except the scale of abandonment.

                  federal government these days cares sweet fa cause lives are cheap…..its all gods will now ….robodebt was gods will, inadequate fire services gods will, vaccine deaths because bought the cheapest vaccine gods will, the list will only keep growing, because psycho government is gods will apparently…

                  just shout hallelujah ….got mit uns… you be right.

                  •  

                    @petry: Well from the news….if they would negotiate release of drug dealers/traffickers on death row with other country, our country is pretty concern on human rights eventhough those people are really the scum of the earth.

                    On the other hand, asian countries would not give a care in the world for those people, pretty sure they would say sorry they are not one of us or please kindly give him a excruciating death.

                    We must have a very kind god to punish human race by killing millions where our population stands at 7.9 billion and still growing. People can keep believing in whatever they want as long as it keep them safe, sain and not hurt others.

              •  

                @wtfnodeal:

                So you agree to ignore a small group of people’s human rights and so the larger group of people’s human rights are upheld?

                So when the infection spreads in Australia again because of returning travellers, you're probably going to be having a sook about the government not doing enough to prevent the virus from getting. The government knows the current quarantine system has it's limits and it's trying to stick within the boundaries.

                It's a very difficult situation right now and no matter what decision they come up with, there's always going to be those that disagree.

                •  

                  @bobbified: So those countries have not passed laws on imprisoning and fining their citizens for returning from India are doing a better quarantine job than Australia? Or simply they knew it would cause another outbreak but couldn’t pass such laws as it was against human rights?
                  The question is it against human rights to let 1 citizen dies outside of Australia in order to save 1,000 citizens from being infected in Australia?
                  Yeah I agree there are always people disagree with whatever the decisions are made by our government but the question is whether what it has done is against human rights. If so why on earth did we criticise other countries such as China for not upholding human rights for its citizens when it also had to make the lesser evil of 2 choices?

  • -1 vote

    'Too harsh government.'

    OK DC, so we can agree that the Chinese Government has screwed up monumentally here by jailing kids based on the fact that there was a loophole in a KFC app. Forget 'ebay glitches' in this context, they are irrelevant.

    My question now is, what action will KFC take?

    The world is watching this, KFC …

    • +3 votes

      My question now is, what action will KFC take?

      Fix the glitch..

    • +1 vote

      KFC isn't going to argue and make the CCP look bad…

  • +2 votes

    I can just imagine having to "cell up" with Bubba and he asks what you're in prison for.

  •  

    They should be fined but no prison time.

    • +8 votes

      Shouldn't even be fined. KFC should have addressed this with their internal bug fixing team.

      • +6 votes

        Just about every country in the world would treat this as a crime, including Australia. They crossed the line big time when they decided to turn the glitch into a profit making business for themselves.

  • +17 votes

    The laws on fraud and theft are vaguely worded in all countries and not just China, and it is not totally impossible that the students would have been prosecuted if they had been living in Australia or another Western country.

    Two examples from the US & Australia:

    In the US, a Walmart cashier was arrested after using a glitch to get $9 free store credit, for each time she scanned a $1 candy bar:
    https://www.wiscnews.com/baraboonewsrepublic/news/local/walm...

    In Australia, a man was arrested after exploiting a bookmaker's sign-up promotion multiple times to get betting credits for losing a win bet when a horse places 2nd or 3rd:
    https://www.9news.com.au/national/punter-charged-with-bookie...

    (This isn't legal opinion & I'm not a legal professional), but I think an arrest is highly unlikely if a person is only getting a discount. Criminal fraud and theft require the person to "profit" in some way, and it is hard to prove that a person "profited" if they only used a glitch to get a 20% discount and buy $50 of Eneloops for $40. The person still ended up being $40 out-of-pocket, and it is the retailer that actually "profited" by $40 of the customer's cash.

    In the case of the Chinese students, the main person named actually made money by selling the free food to other students. I think if someone similarly exploited a glitch to get free items & then sold them to other people for cash, then they might also be prosecuted in Australia.

    • +2 votes

      Its who you know.

      In Australia, the bookmaker is essential for money transactions for politicians and judges (and the rest of the hangers on), so they MUST be protected.

      • +9 votes

        This. Old mate is prosecuted for getting $20 off a billion dollar gambling company, but if someone broke into his house and stole all of his worldly possessions, there wouldn't be half as much effort put in to find the thief.

        •  

          Agreed. We have an alleged rapist in our federal government. Would other people be able to keep their high profile job if they were alleged rapists?

          Is he only still in his job because of who he knows?

    •  

      100k in credits

      Yeah you can see why he got caught

  • +1 vote

    He’s not jailed. Just hired to find Chinese Prison loopholes.

    • +4 votes

      Or to be "Re-educated"…

      • +3 votes

        I need a new liver. I hope they didn't eat any KFC

        •  

          After posting this post, you'd probably be given a fake one.

  • -1 vote

    what is the difference between a hack/loophole/exploit in the app vs real life? So on the app you can find ways to get discounts or free meals more than the intended offer of 1 per user. For the free meal offer, after the first use aren't you just stealing? every time I order takeaway from one of the fast food chains I stand by the pickup counter waiting for my order. And I would see orders being called out over and over again and wonder how hard it is for someone to walk up and pick it up? And I would at times see people go up to the counter and ask about their order the the staff runs around and fills it immediately. Wouldn't that be the same as an hack/loophole/exploit found in the app?

  • +12 votes

    Did someone say KFC..

  • +1 vote

    Did they get refresher towels too? Don't seem to get em anymore.

    Finger licking good might come in handy for them in jail

    •  

      Must depend on the store, one time with a large order ended up with 10-12 of them (in the last few months)

      edit: and sometimes gotten none…

  • -1 vote

    At least they'll keep getting free food in goal.

    • +1 vote

      Good point. Maybe this was their cunning ruse all along …

      • +3 votes

        Teach a man to exploit KFC app, eat for a day
        Jail a man for exploiting KFC app, eat for life

    • +1 vote

      Well, if you don’t know how to spell ‘gaol’, then you’re more than welcome to use ‘jail’.

      •  

        Maybe Loops is American …

      •  

        Scored an own goal, is strong with the said comment.

  • +1 vote

    I think they deserve some jail to learn a lesson, but 2 and half years is way too harsh.
    Judging by only what is on that article, 2 months would have been enough. You don’t want to ruin someone’s life over such a harmless crime.