Not so good after all

This small IT services outfit offers its clients a variety of specialized services using custom software -- including safeguarding client data, says a pilot fish there.

"So one would think the company IT group would be good at backing things up," fish says. "I was working in the group that supported the development systems and programmers. One of the first things I noticed was there wasn't a backup system in the area."

Fish figures that's not likely to be a problem for most of the development boxes. They're rapidly built and then blown away on a regular basis, as applications are developed and then put into production.

But he's concerned about the software repository and bug tracking systems. They're not being backed up either.

So fish looks into it. Turns out there are scripts that are supposed to make copies of the bug-tracking and software repositories on a daily basis. Unfortunately, they're pointing to a directory structure that doesn't exist.

Fish explains the problem to his boss and they go looking for a solution. And they find one: It turns out the PC support group is on the same isolated network, and it has a backup server with enough storage to cover fish's group.

A few backup agents later, things are all set up to back up the development data every day.

And fish is satisfied ... almost. "I didn't have any direct access to the backup system and was not getting reports, so I had to rely on the PC support group," he says. "This made me a little uncomfortable.

"A few months went by. One day I ran into one of the PC techs on my way to get a cup of coffee.

"'Hey,' he said, 'you know that system we were using to back up your software? Did they tell you they got rid of that two weeks ago?'"

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