She's Baaaaaaaack!

This site's network is hit by the Netsky worm, which begins sending infected e-mails that appear to be from people in users' address books. "Apparently, some people hadn't cleaned out their address books for quite a while," says pilot fish. "One lady received an e-mail that said it was from a co-worker who had passed away a year before. The subject line was 'I'm back.' Needless to say, she was a bit startled."


School district's IT shop wants to make sure computer students don't hack into the districtwide network, so the high school's computer labs are cut off from the rest of the network. Then the school gets a grant for a wireless LAN in its library. "Students and staff in the computer labs immediately conducted a candy fund-raiser to purchase PC wireless cards and wireless hubs," reports non-IT pilot fish. "Students now have access to the entire school network. We just aren't mentioning this to IT."

Tape Solution

Laptops of traveling users at this company are set up for both dial-up and broadband connections, but everyone complains that the high-speed setup never works right. "I couldn't understand why, so I tested and retested until I stumbled across the problem," says pilot fish. "Users would connect to a high-speed line, then also try to connect through their dial-up modems. I retrained all my users, but the calls continued to come in -- until I taped step-by-step instructions into their laptop bags."

First Priority

Security consultant pilot fish plugs his laptop into a government client's network to run his online demo. "In the first minute, my laptop security software registers attempted attacks by MS-Blaster, SQL Slammer and Nimda worms, all from local LAN addresses," fish says. "My sales guy asks the client whether he was aware of the 'unhealthy atmosphere' in his office, and if he'd like to see our solution. The client says, 'No, we don't have budget for that' -- and that's the end of that!"

But It's There

This client stresses the importance of security -- everything has to be behind the firewall, says consultant pilot fish whose company has just taken over the work. But when fish checks the firewall settings, he discovers that all traffic is passing through. "Seems the previous providers had a lot of trouble making everything talk, so they just opened the firewall up completely to reduce complaints," fish sighs. "But technically, they did have a firewall."

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Copyright © 2004 IDG Communications, Inc.

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