'Pretty sloppy': Man finds old driver's licence published on Optus website

Brooke Rolfe
News Reporter

About 10 years ago David M Green thought he said goodbye to his old driving licence for the final time - snapping one last photo and handing it back to the government.

But this week he was proven sorely wrong, after a friend got in touch to tell him his former identification card was being used as an example on the Optus website.

The comedian and writer for Shaun Micallef's Mad as Hell noticed an instant opportunity to have some fun with Australia’s second biggest telco company, taking to Twitter with a rather direct demand.

“Hey Optus, I just learned you are using an image of my driver’s licence as an example on your website without asking me. Can I have some money please?,” he wrote to the social media site on Friday.

David M Green's old licence made a bizarre reappearance but formed the crux of a stellar Tweet. Source: Facebook/David M Green & Optus

The tweet was subsequently re-shared almost 500 times and attracted more than 160 replies from many people who seemingly already had a bone to pick with the service provider.

“People are fed up with terrible service and especially because they’re supposed to be keeping our private information secure, and when something like this happens it makes everyone very angry,” Mr Green told Yahoo News Australia.

“It’s a breech of privacy, even though the photo was already on my website, they’ve taken it and put it on their website to a larger audience - they’re a big company,” the 32-year-old said.

“The other side is copyright infringement, because they’ve taken a picture without asking. Had they asked, I probably would have said yes to be honest, but probably got them to blur out my birth date.

“It’s just very lazy on their part because they easily could’ve made a dummy one, I’m sure there are templates you could use. You see them all the time on government websites.

“It’s pretty sloppy really.”

Mr Green said he was contacted by Optus swiftly after sharing his tweet and assured that the company was investigating how his licence came to be used on the site.

“I’m waiting to hear back on how it happened, it will be interesting to learn that.”

Mr Green's old South Australian licence was used without permission on the Optus website. Source: Twitter/David M. Green

When it came to compensation, Twitter users had not held back on suggestions, with people saying the comedian should be awarded free internet and millions of dollars.

“Everything from free internet for life, to tens of thousands of dollars to one or two million dollars - that seems a bit ridiculous,” he said.

“If nothing else, it might make companies re-assess how they do these things and maybe take it a bit more seriously.”

Optus has since apologised for using the photo.

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