Go Back  FlyerTalk Forums > Miles&Points > Airlines and Mileage Programs > United Airlines | MileagePlus
Reload this Page >

2014 UA Issued Awards on Air China (CA) Are Mysteriously Being Canceled (Hacked?)

2014 UA Issued Awards on Air China (CA) Are Mysteriously Being Canceled (Hacked?)

    Hide Wikipost
Old May 13, 14, 4:42 am   -   Wikipost
Please read: This is a community-maintained wiki post containing the most important information from this thread. You may edit the Wiki once you have been on FT for 90 days and have made 90 posts.
 
Last edit by: Pat89339
Wiki Link
A number of folks with award flights booked on CA (Air China) found their reservations cancelled. The only notification of cancellation appears to be an email in from UA written in chinese. UA reps confirmed that cancellations were made online and CA award space was no longer available. UA can rebook on other flights when award space is available.

It is plausible that a third party with access to PNR and pax name on the flight can fraudulently cancel an existing itinerary and book the reopened award seat.

Affected FlyerTalk members — with links to where in this discussion they posted their experiences — include:
  1. MikeMpls
  2. nihaoa
  3. lewende Reported 4 friends with this issue
  4. ordbkk
  5. twebst
  6. kb1992
  7. litesleeper
  8. zombietooth
  9. critten Reported 2/3 confirmations (3 people CA Business class) cancelled at the same time
  10. skyvanman Also 1 friend with the issue
  11. chris1234
  12. atiger29
  13. bubble o bill
  14. genemk2
  15. jefftiger
  16. CuddlyFlyer
  17. gpeso8
  18. imm2b
  19. acf1270
  20. dgxoxo
  21. ACM two passengers
Originally Posted by ordbkk View Post
It seems everybody wants to see the message.. here was mine:
united.com 通知 - 航班预订取消
2014年4月17日 (星期四)
united.com | 优惠促销 | 预订 | 赢取前程万里 (MileagePlus®) 奖励里程 | 我的帐户

先生 ORDBKK
您的预订 MYRES123 已取消,我们已收到您的退款申请。申请信用卡退款需 7 个工作日。如果信用卡退款未在一个付款周期内寄出,请联系信用卡公司。对于包括现金退款在内的 所有其他形式 的付款,需要 20 个工作日。

如需详细信息或查看退款的状态,请访问 united.com 并提供您的机票号码。

感谢您使用 united.com

电子邮件信息
请不要使用“回复”地址回复此邮件。
此电子邮件中的信息仅供原接收人使用。
如果您遇到技术问题,请通过电子邮件或电话联系 united.com 服务支持。
通知:机票取消确认
电子邮件地址: [email protected]

Originally Posted by ordbkk View Post
For tracking purposes, I went through the 27 pages of this thread and compiled a list of those affected:

MikeMpls
nihaoa
lewende (reported 4 friends with this issue)
ordbkk
twebst
kb1992
litesleeper
zombietooth
critten
skyvanman (also 1 friend with the issue)
jefftiger (but, happened during October 2013)

So we're at 13 people affected, although some like critten have had multiple trips canceled.
From what I understand, all of these occurred in the last 3 weeks.
Print Wikipost

Old Apr 19, 14, 1:26 pm
  #256  
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 13
Add me to the list

You can add me to the list of victims. Until I came across this thread I thought I was the only one. I had a trip to the Philippines that included Air China on the return. I received that same Chinese email confirming my cancellation, which of course I didn't do. I called UA right away, but they weren't able to do anything for me. the agent was very kind, and she looked for different options, but said no availability for reward travel anymore. She added that the cancellation came via the website, from the same place I booked the trip (my office). I paid the $200 to recredit the miles. I have asked United to waive the $200 but I'm not optimistic. I know I'm completely not understanding of human behavior, but why do some people have to mess with others' accounts? I just don't get it. sigh.
litesleeper is offline  
Old Apr 19, 14, 1:35 pm
  #257  
In Memoriam, FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Benicia CA
Programs: Alaska MVP Gold 75K, AA 3.8MM, UA 1.1MM, enjoying the retired life
Posts: 31,845
Originally Posted by litesleeper View Post
You can add me to the list of victims.
Welcome to FlyerTalk When did you discover your itinerary was tampered with (or get the e-mail)?
tom911 is offline  
Old Apr 19, 14, 1:42 pm
  #258  
Suspended
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: SFO
Programs: UA 1K
Posts: 1,955
Originally Posted by litesleeper View Post
She added that the cancellation came via the website, from the same place I booked the trip (my office).
Does your office employ any Chinese hackers?
DaviddesJ is offline  
Old Apr 19, 14, 1:47 pm
  #259  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: BOS/EAP
Programs: UA 1K, MR LTT, HH Dia, Amex Plat
Posts: 28,148
Originally Posted by litesleeper View Post
You can add me to the list of victims. Until I came across this thread I thought I was the only one. I had a trip to the Philippines that included Air China on the return. I received that same Chinese email confirming my cancellation, which of course I didn't do. I called UA right away, but they weren't able to do anything for me. the agent was very kind, and she looked for different options, but said no availability for reward travel anymore. She added that the cancellation came via the website, from the same place I booked the trip (my office). I paid the $200 to recredit the miles. I have asked United to waive the $200 but I'm not optimistic. I know I'm completely not understanding of human behavior, but why do some people have to mess with others' accounts? I just don't get it. sigh.
You shouldn't have paid the $200 and rather asked them to re-instate the ticket. Don't accept anything like this; make sure if they do this involuntarily that they note in the record. Small claims court might be your best avenue if corporate customer care doesn't take care of the situation.
cfischer is offline  
Old Apr 19, 14, 1:49 pm
  #260  
Suspended
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: SFO
Programs: UA 1K
Posts: 1,955
Originally Posted by cfischer View Post
Small claims court might be your best avenue if corporate customer care doesn't take care of the situation.
Yes and no. Obviously it's not worth his time to go to court over $200. UA knows this, it's not much of a threat, either. If necessary, complaining to regulators is more likely to accomplish something useful.
DaviddesJ is offline  
Old Apr 19, 14, 1:50 pm
  #261  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: BOS/EAP
Programs: UA 1K, MR LTT, HH Dia, Amex Plat
Posts: 28,148
Originally Posted by DaviddesJ View Post
Yes and no. Obviously it's not worth his time to go to court over $200. UA knows this, it's not much of a threat, either.
$200 on top of thousands of dollars to purchase a paid ticket to replace the award ticket? That's absolutely worth it! If the ticket doesn't touch US soil the DOT won't do anything, so many tickets won't qualify
cfischer is offline  
Old Apr 19, 14, 1:55 pm
  #262  
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: 10^7 mm from Ȱ
Programs: Hyatt D/HHonors D/ SPG P/ Marriott P/ IHG P/ UA 1K/ AA EXP/ DL D
Posts: 1,959
Originally Posted by cfischer View Post
$200 on top of thousands of dollars to purchase a paid ticket to replace the award ticket? That's absolutely worth it! If the ticket doesn't touch US soil the DOT won't do anything, so many tickets won't qualify
Many tickets actually qualify because they all have a CA TPAC segment ending in or starting from the US.
lewende is offline  
Old Apr 19, 14, 2:11 pm
  #263  
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: India, & Great State of TEXAS
Programs: AA EX-Plat ** , UA 1K, IHG platinum
Posts: 102
Originally Posted by ordbkk View Post
Maybe it's worth calling a few agents and tell them you're concerned somebody will cancel your reservation and ask to put a lock on it. They told me it wasn't possible, but I believe somebody there must know how to do it.

Call UA again, ask them to make your reservation non cancellable. Direct them to this thread (they are aware) and express your concern. They can come up (hopefully) with some kind of block..
IAHUArunner is offline  
Old Apr 19, 14, 2:16 pm
  #264  
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 166
At this point, calling out United on Twitter/Facebook is probably in order in the hopes that the media picks up on this major IT/security issue. Sadly, unless a company gets publicly shamed in front of millions of people, they just don't want to help. Sad, but that's exactly the case with this airline that is currently swirling around the toilet bowl.
CLEContinental is offline  
Old Apr 19, 14, 2:18 pm
  #265  
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Programs: UA 1K
Posts: 8,626
I think an email to Jeff with a link to this thread might be in order.
mgcsinc is offline  
Old Apr 19, 14, 2:34 pm
  #266  
Suspended
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: SFO
Programs: UA 1K
Posts: 1,955
Originally Posted by cfischer View Post
$200 on top of thousands of dollars to purchase a paid ticket to replace the award ticket?
I think your chance of winning such a remedy in small-claims court is low. Buying a replacement ticket in hopes of winning a lawsuit months later would be pretty speculative. If you were so committed to going that you were willing to pay out of pocket either way, then after doing that filing a lawsuit could make more sense. But then you might end up over the filing limits for small-claims, anyway.
DaviddesJ is offline  
Old Apr 19, 14, 3:12 pm
  #267  
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Chicago
Programs: UA 1k
Posts: 83
Originally Posted by cfischer View Post
did you ask them to fix it? They were willing to help w/ the CA situation and probably had no idea you wanted to use the 72-hr visa-free transit.
I didn't mention the Visa issue specifically, but I did ask for alternate flights, because leaving earlier meant we'd be taking an additional day vacation from work. The rep searched but could not find any other flights with award space (and I find the same problem when I search). There is no award space for 10 days before or after our intended departure.

We have since explained the United snafu to our employers and worked out the extra day off, and that's when I sat down to examine the impact to our itinerary and noticed we'd need to extend our hotel reservation and run afoul of the TWOV limit.

This has been a very frustrating aspect of the whole thing: United has been unwilling to restore our reservation if it could not be done as a saver award. There are revenue seats on our original flights, and other flights that we find satisfactory, but we were told the single United flight is our only choice despite how much it conflicts with our plans.
ordbkk is offline  
Old Apr 19, 14, 3:34 pm
  #268  
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Chicago
Programs: UA 1k
Posts: 83
Originally Posted by CLEContinental View Post
At this point, calling out United on Twitter/Facebook is probably in order in the hopes that the media picks up on this major IT/security issue. Sadly, unless a company gets publicly shamed in front of millions of people, they just don't want to help. Sad, but that's exactly the case with this airline that is currently swirling around the toilet bowl.
I don't have much of an audience on FB or Twitter.. Where are the heavy hitters with lots of Twitter followers? Like @WanderngAramean or @TheMrPickles ? Can we get a mention on @FlyerTalk ?
ordbkk is offline  
Old Apr 19, 14, 3:37 pm
  #269  
Suspended
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: SFO
Programs: UA 1K
Posts: 1,955
It's pretty surprising to me. I can understand that UA might not be able to get CA to give them seats, but they should do more to accommodate you on UA metal where there are empty seats. I agree with trying to make a fuss on social media; also, I would consider trying to get a story in the press. Seems like there could be a major news story on this, if it's a trend and not just a one-off. I don't personally know the reporters who cover travel for the major papers, but surely someone at FT does? It's not impossible that you could get somewhere just by calling the NY Times and asking to speak to their reporter who covers the airline industry.

How far off is your trip? A few days? A few weeks?
DaviddesJ is offline  
Old Apr 19, 14, 3:41 pm
  #270  
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Chicago
Programs: UA 1k
Posts: 83
Originally Posted by DaviddesJ View Post
How far off is your trip? A few days? A few weeks?
I have a few weeks, luckily and this didn't happen closer to departure. But F/C space is already limited, and the longer they take to respond, the fewer options we have.
ordbkk is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread