Chipotle Mexican Grill and McDonald’s

McDonald's logo.

A warning to the City of Fort Wayne as they consider using social media?

Chipotle Mexican Grill has had one of their employees facebook accounts highjacked, or so they report:

Elsewhere, Chipotle Mexican Grill yesterday claimed one of its employees had her Facebook account hacked following a controversial post that appeared on the restaurant’s page on the social media site last week. A post from the employee’s account read, “Soo I just ran over a white cat on my way home…oops!!! Not my fault!”

The post was removed, and the company issued a statement on its Facebook page yesterday reading, “The statement about the cat is completely false. Someone hacked into our employee’s account and posted that update without her knowledge. We at Chipotle respect all animals and would not joke about something like that. We are working with local authorities and hope for a quick resolution. We also ask that you be respectful as this is a difficult situation for our employee. We appreciate your patience.”

However, discussion surrounding the post continues to dominate the brand’s wall and discussion forums on the site, clearly demonstrating the risks associated with brands engaging in open social media forums.

McDonald’s sent me an email stating a company they work with that sends their email promotions and other items has had their server’s improperly accessed.  The only time I’ve ever given them my e-mail or any other contact information was when I filed a complaint about the downtown location. Tonight’s email reads:

December 16, 2010

Dear Valued McDonald’s Customer,

Our records indicate you previously elected to submit information to McDonald’s in connection with one of our websites or promotions. We wanted to let you know that although you recently unsubscribed and opted-out of receiving emails from McDonald’s, there is a possibility that prior to your election to opt-out, the limited information you previously provided to McDonald’s through its websites or promotions was improperly accessed by an unauthorized third party. Please be assured that you remain unsubscribed, and you will not receive future promotional emails from McDonald’s.

By way of background, McDonald’s asked Arc Worldwide, a long-time business partner, to develop and coordinate the distribution of promotional emails. Arc hired an email service provider, a standard business practice, to supervise and manage the email database. That email service provider has advised that its computer systems recently were accessed by an unauthorized third party, and that information, including information that you provided to McDonald’s, may have been accessed by that unauthorized third party. Law enforcement officials have been notified and are investigating this incident.

McDonald’s does not collect sensitive financial information, such as Social Security Numbers or credit card numbers, online or through email. As such, the information improperly accessed did not include this type of information. Rather, the limited information you provided to McDonald’s included information required to confirm your age, a method to contact you (such as name, mobile phone number, and postal address and/or email address), and other general preference information. In the event that you are contacted by someone claiming to be from McDonald’s asking for personal or financial information, do not respond and instead immediately contact us at the number below so we can contact the authorities. Please remember, McDonald’s would not ask for that type of information online or through email.

We apologize for any concern this incident may cause. Protecting our valued customers is very important to us. If you have any questions or concerns, rather than replying to this email, please contact us immediately at our toll-free number 1-800-244-6227. For additional information please visit our website at

McDonald’s Customer Satisfaction Team


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