After a mysterious text disparaging Warwick Democratic candidates was sent out prior to the Nov. 2 general election, many believed it to be a possible hacking of local businesses and their clientele’s private contact information.
The text was sent from a phone number that is used by local businesses such as Leo Kaytes Ford in Warwick to send messages to their clients.
Not a breach
“It wasn’t a breach of a database or hacking,” said Leo Kaytes Ford Jr., co-owner of the car dealership.
Leo Kaytes uses a local software factory called J.Geeks to help keep up with the latest tech tools, including client databases, appointment systems and online presence. The company works for various local Orange County businesses.
When the text appeared, three Leo Kaytes clients called the dealership to ask what was going on. Leo Kaytes immediately contacted J.Geeks to find out what happened.
“I checked to see his (Leo Kaytes) client logs,” said a representative from J.Geeks. “I thought maybe someone at his department logged into his account and sent it out. There was nothing.”
Shared telephone number
Apparently, the text was sent out using a shared phone number that other local businesses use. “We use an email processor called SendGrid, which is what the person or company who sent this text used also,” said the J.Geeks representative.
Anyone can sign up for an account on SendGrid; all you need is an email address. SendGrid’s parent company Twilio facilitates texts and emails, which can be sent in mass to a client list provided by the customer.
The only client J.Geeks knows about being affected by the text is Leo Kaytes Ford. Leo Kaytes said he only heard from three clients who received the texts. “Out of 7000 people that are in our database, only three overlapping clients received it.”
It is still unclear who was behind the text message, and how many people it was sent to. If you received a text message disparaging Warwick Democratic candidates prior to the election, please email us your information at firstname.lastname@example.org