There’s been a bit of a stir today with the ability to view Amazon listings directly from eBay search results. Rob from spotted a strange advert block at the top of eBay search results and one of the tabs instantly displayed Amazon products right there on eBay.
The good news is that although it looks like an eBay advert it’s actually an insert from a third party browser search utility called Buzzdock. The Buzzdock app enables you to quickly view search results from your favorite websites without having to open multiple tabs and/or windows and works with a number of websites including eBay, Amazon, Flickr, YouTube, Twitter and Wikipedia.
The bad news and the surprise is that eBay haven’t blocked the utility from inserting code into their pages. Although the code is inserted by the user’s browser it’s still somewhat disconcerting to find Amazon search results viewable on an eBay page. The problem is if a service such as Buzzdock can insert code into an eBay page on a user’s computer what other code could be inserted by malicious tools without the user being aware of it?
Trust and Safety is everything on eBay, code insertion and page takeovers just shouldn’t happen.
Edited to add: We’ve been looking at this a little more and although we don’t know how Buzzdock appeared on the computer in question it had to have been inadvertently installed. This could have been a new download or an existing program update where a check box was missed that added Buzzdock. It works a bit like a browser extension (e.g. Skype changing phone numbers to clickable links) or Google Translate (Translating the text) and Buzzdock can only affect pages from sites it works with on the particular browser it’s installed on if the user has allowed it to be installed.