Huge privacy breach of machine-translated materials at
Thread poster: Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT

Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Local time: 14:25
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
May 14

Dear fellow translators,

Well, if we had not warned enough in the past about the risks! Now it is reality. Exposes Highly Sensitive Information in Massive Privacy Breach
Anyone doing the same simple two-step Google search will concur. A few searches by Slator uncovered an astonishing variety of sensitive information that is freely accessible, ranging from a physician’s email exchange with a global pharmaceutical company on tax matters, late payment notices, a staff performance report of a global investment bank, and termination letters. In all instances, full names, emails, phone numbers, and other highly sensitive data were revealed.

One more reason to be extremely cautious in all matters related to online machine translation of any kind and whether such services store anything or, even worse, claim that they do not store anything but in fact they do! What goes up comes down, folks!


(PS.: Yes, I know that this post is going to be followed by a (probably long) series of replies by those who are so terribly fond of Machine Translation and will claim that this has nothing to do with them (or with our profession as a whole). For those of you out there, just think of how many inexperienced or unattentive translators out there might have used the service "just to see if it helps" and have left their clients' stuff exposed. As long as the service we use stores anything we post to them for MT, someone is going to be sorry... and it will probably the profession as a whole as our work gets discredited by clumsy practices!)


Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 13:25
Member (2008)
Italian to English
! May 14

Wow. Thanks Tomás. Many people had previously raised the issue of confidentiality. This confirms that they were right.


Michele Lemieux-Madison  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 08:25
Member (2005)
English to French
+ ...
And on the eve of the GDPR... May 14

Thank you Tomás!


Chris S  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Swedish to English
+ ...
Disappointing May 14

This was six months ago and the world still hasn't come to an end


English to Russian
+ ...
cheering you up May 14

Chris, how about a rave-up, when your contacts and private data flow in the internet, just because some clever individual used online translation?

The GDPR is funny, on the other hand--that's why the NDA is for)


Lian Pang  Identity Verified
Local time: 14:25
Member (Mar 2018)
English to Chinese
+ ...
everything comes with a price May 15

free machine translation isn't so "free" after all.


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Huge privacy breach of machine-translated materials at

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