The wonders of technology have their own loopholes, evident in this recent experience by a diner in China who was shocked to get a bill asking her to pay $60,000 for her “food orders.”
Why that expensive? She accidentally posted the QR code for ordering meals online, prompting orders to order through that code – people unknown to her.
QR codes are a kind of barcode usually made of black and white squares of various sizes. A smartphone can be used to scan a QR code. When scanned, it leads the person to a page on their phone where they can read news or make food orders, among various others.
The woman visited a hotpot restaurant with her friend, but her desire to trend online for her food posts has gone wrong. She said she just wanted to post photos of their food on the table, but she accidentally included the order QR code in her shot. The QR code that can be scanned to order meals was stickered on the table.
Orders from random customers
Those who scanned the QR code she accidentally posted were able to order whopping 2,850 portions of squid, 1,850 portions of fresh duck blood, and 9,990 portions of shrimp paste, each priced at a few dollars.
The diner only posted the photos on her restricted viewing WeChat Moments page, which means it can only be seen by her WeChat contacts. But, apparently, the page’s list included a large number of people who scanned the QR code. WeChat is an instant messaging, social media, and mobile payments platform.
She only discovered that random people scanned the code after she received the bill for “her orders.”
She’s still lucky
She was able to immediately delete her post, but people kept ordering food billed to her, possibly because the photo had been downloaded or captured as a screenshot.
But she’s still lucky as the restaurant did not make her pay the huge bill and instead transferred her to a new table, with the restaurant just ignoring the orders made via the QR code.