said by wirelessdog:
I would be more concerned if they provided a reference than if they didn't.
I have some customers who outright offered (without us asking) to be references. They were so thrilled with our service that they couldn't wait to tell other people about it. Granted those cases are rare, but they do happen. There have been a few key customers (which are also other businesses) that we have asked for permission to use as a reference. That way a customer can go into their store and talk face to face with another customer. It's good for us and brings potential customers into their store too.
Giving out referrals without permission would be bad, but quite often is not the case.