So, I took Lime Crime off my cruelty-free lists. And I sleep a little bit better at night knowing that.
They’re still allegedly cruelty-free and Leaping Bunny-certified. For the fist time ever, I took a cruelty-free brand off my list! Permanently. And there’s no way in hell I’m ever going to add it back.
For some time now, Lime Crime customers have had their credit card information stolen, as well as hundreds or thousands of dollars flying out of their accounts. This fact only became public recently even though the company has been letting it slide for months, and it’s a big deal.
They claim they’ve been hacked, but some evidence suggests that the website’s SSL certificate expired. Best case scenario? Lime Crime didn’t secure its website and didn’t care. An expired SSL certificate is the equivalent of leaving the bank’s safe open. It should never happen, and the company is entirely to blame for it.
Evidence that credit card information was being stolen started spreading in mid-February 2015, but customers first reported issues in October 2014. The screenshot below shows that Lime Crime’s SSL certificate was renewed on March 2, 2015, meaning that for 6 months, they did not care about their website security being compromised.
We’ve known how shitty Lime Crime is as a company for a long time. It wasn’t until they got their Leaping Bunny certification that I (reluctantly) considered adding the brand. In the spirit of fairness, I did. In the same spirit of fairness, I’m now taking them back down.
You see, I display ethical companies on my lists. I focus on animal testing because that’s the battle I chose, but what supporting cruelty-free and vegan companies boils down to is this: rewarding a company for being ethical. And if one of the companies on my lists turns out to have a huge ethical problem, it’s my duty to take it off immediately.
If you’ve been left in the dark about Lime Crime’s history, you might not know that their ethics have been questioned for basically as long as the company has existed. They sold cheap, repackaged cosmetics at huge markups. They falsely claimed that their makeup is vegan. They threatened to sue bloggers for exposing the company. They berated their customers.
They’re also dishonest. Repeatedly dishonest. And they’ve proven this once again during this “security malfunction”. Why would I ever add a dishonest brand to my list of cruelty-free brands? Their cruelty-free claim would be meaningless.
All these things go beyond petty internet gossip. This is a real company, making a profit from being unethical in every way possible. We’re talking about credit card fraud. The owner might have gotten away with dressing up as Hitler for Halloween, but stolen credit card information won’t be excused or tolerated.
Still inclined to support Lime Crime? Click here!
Lime Crime owes its success to marketing. They literally think they can get away with anything as long as they have “good marketing”. Do you believe that Lime Crime’s marketing will sweep all their ethical shortcomings under the carpet?
Suzana Rose is the founder and editor-in-chief of Cruelty-Free Kitty. She loves using her creative energy to run her ethical businesses, and when she’s not working, you can find her thrifting cute clothes, listening to podcasts, or rewatching her favorite episodes of The Office.