Hong Kong marathon payment system secure for credit cards, organiser says amid online rumours to contrary
Organiser claims its investigation finds no unauthorised access
The organiser of the Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon has confirmed its payment platform was intact, rebuking reports that a security breach had compromised users’ credit card details.
On Saturday afternoon, the organiser sought to quash the rumours that circulated widely on social media.
“After investigation, the event’s registration and payment gateway service provider has confirmed with the organiser that, as of now, there was no unauthorised access, unusual activities or security breach in the system,” a statement read.
The organiser reiterated that stringent requirements were in place for the payment system’s provider to ensure data security and privacy.
Police confirmed five reports had been received as of 7pm Saturday. The force’s Cyber Security and Technology Crime Bureau was investigating the matter.
The issue concerned a group of runners who were allotted places in the second-round ballot for the popular event, scheduled for January 21 next year.
It was not known how many were involved.
The original payment deadline was midnight Saturday, but the runners now have until October 25 to confirm their entry.
A cheque payment option was also provided.
Reports of the alleged credit card theft first surfaced on an online runners’ group on Thursday afternoon.
At least five users claimed that suspicious transactions had been made with credit cards they had earlier used to pay for the marathon. They said the cards involved were from different banks.
A total of 74,000 runners are expected to take part in next year’s edition of Hong Kong’s biggest participatory sporting event.
Entry is decided by ballot. The first-round ballot results were announced in late September, and forfeited places were allocated in a second-round ballot on October 6.