Stupid Product Key

Client: New laptop – Needs the Product Key to activate Microsoft Office.

Tech: When you are prompted to activate MS Outlook, please use this product key and let us know if it doesn’t work.


Client: I’ve never been asked for a product key. It’s actually asking to “change the product key.”

Tech: That’s the computer asking you for the product key…

Stupid Compliance

Payroll processor: We cannot accept your direct deposit information in an email for compliance reasons.

Me: So what do we need?

Payroll processor: You need to send us a report from your accounting program that includes the info.

Me: There is no such report. Can I send you a screenshot of the information?

Payroll processor: If the employees’ names are on the screenshot, that might work.

Me: <Thinks about a) how easy it is to generate a screenshot and b) what stupid regulation we could possibly be complying with by sending payroll info “in a screenshot” but “not in an email.”>

Stupid Installation Disc

Client: I need administrative rights to install software.

Operator: A tech is not presently available, but I will have them call you back.

<Time passes…>

Client: You can install the software today at noon.

Tech: I will remotely connect to the system at that time. Thanks!

<Client takes installation disc out of computer and puts it on the shelf to keep it safe. Disc drive is used for nothing besides installing this stupid software.>

Tech: So… where’s this disc I’m supposed to install the program from?

Stupid Malware Infection

A user received an email, allegedly from the Federal Treasury. Despite attending security awareness training, whereby she was instructed to never open attachments that were not expected, the user

  • found the email in her Junk E-Mail folder,
  • moved it to her inbox,
  • saved the attached ZIP file,
  • extracted its EXE(cutable) contents, and
  • ran it…

infecting her PC with the Phoenix Exploit Kit.

The user works at a bank where she’s in charge of things like ACH transfers. Stupid.