616 posts • joined 16 Aug 2012
One place I have worked at they had an older phone system. You could change the person's name of the extension from the handset if you knew what you were doing. I did know how to do this and scared a (not very blameless) colleague sh!tless by changing mine to display the name of the Chief Executive. I called his number and the poor bloke visibly jumped when he saw who was calling. After realising he was being set up he wanted to know how to do it. When I got in the next day my phone was telling people that I was Mr Tickle. Apparently I was going to be something much worse until he realised my retaliation would have been much worse. He didn't want to escalate the situation further as he'd started it by signing me up to the Britney Spears fan club email news. This was before verifying your email became a popular thing.
Re: Similar scenario with a line printer
I visited a house years ago where an OAP family friend lived. She was told that I had just done my Electrics basics exam and passed. I was then quizzed about the lovely three pin sockets that littered the walls of the house. Does the electricity leak all over the place when the switch is set to on? Is it dangerous to have it all over the floor and can it get through the floorboards? Should she keep something plugged in to the socket to keep it from leaking?
My mum whispered to me that whatever I said I must not frighten her with my answers. So I explained everything in a way she'd understand and not be worried by. The only thing I said that wasn't true was that the electricity that came out of the three pin sockets was better quality than the stuff that came out of the old two pin sockets. Apparently she had expressed a desire on more than one occasion to go back to the old ones.
Re: There is a little bit of me
At the time of that particular virus spreading I was working for a firm doing some tech related planning. We were using outlook and hit quite hard when one just person was sent it. Whilst IT were cleaning everything the rest of the place descended on the local public houses. We had an afternoon spent doing not much except trying different beers etc. Then returned to the office to collect our things at 5:30 whereupon some people went back to the pub. IT support told us that they had cleaned all our mailboxes/computers and beefed up the mail filter.
Everything was fine after that except a few months later when we all started to get these emails again. IT were a bit annoyed that it had made it through the mail filter The culprit was the Intern mailbox which was only used when we had an intern. There wasn't an intern at the time so the mailbox never got cleaned. One of the staff left immediately for the pub when the first email appeared. He was called back before he could order anything to drink.
Well there was obviously something fishy going on. Mine's the one with the scampi Nik Naks in.
Re: Can someone tell me why?
My credit score from one of these numpty companies is 100% (999/999) from another it's not even 60%. When I enquired with my financial adviser as to why this might be he said they have different factors that they use. It might be because I don't have a mobile phone contract, a landline, regular broadband etc. This despite the fact that I've never missed a payment on anything in my life. Companies make their own minds up as to whether to lend you money based on the info they can see on your report. Your score means bugger all to them apparently but can be useful in massaging your ego.
I had a free time limited version of a casino games suite back in the windows 95 days. I had altered the date by a fair few years when installing it so that the thing would run indefinitely. I ballsed this up however and it required me to keep the date in the 70s. However someone borrowed the computer to apply for something and had to use a DOS program to do so. The person in question had filled in their date of birth and discovered it then worked out she was 3 years old. So she changed the date to the correct one and carried on. She didn't realise that this would bugger things up but I returned from college to discover that the game didn't work anymore. Bloody annoying but she had no idea it would cause problems for anything else.
Re: No Roaming with AppleWatch 3/4
An eSIM could give you additional freedom in selecting a provider. Here you cannot even use the AppleWatch in other countries. Particularly in Europe it is easy to cross borders. No roaming is a massive limitation.
That was exactly my point in the last story about eSIMs. Whilst the theory is great about them it's obvious that they're open to abuse with network lock ins.
Working for a retail chain doing shop fit out and maintenance. I visited stores in various places and had some interesting experiences with "stock". Any unsold items that had not appeared on two stocktakes were considered not to exist. This meant that the items could be taken by staff and the company couldn't do much about it. The problem was that the stock system was not designed to allow for items that were not on the system to be added by individual shops. Further to this items could not be returned to Head Office if they didn't exist because there was nothing to generate a return in the system. If the system says that widgets in stock=0 you have no widgets these therefore can't be returned. So as the stock was discovered at the stores they quietly put it to one side and then 'distributed' at a later date.
The company was apparently aware that their system was useless but valued the cost of fixing it at more than the odd old item going missing. Stores could send an email to the retail coordinator with details of the extra items that were found and they could be added that way. No one did though as it was seen as a perk.
Re: 3 did it in desperation
Vodafone tried to tempt me away from Three a while ago. The sales bloke was telling me about their almost 50 countries I could roam in for no extra charge. I looked at the list and was instantly drawn to the fact that most of the nations listed were European or related to one. Also since when did the Vatican City get their own mobile network? I explained that I wasn't going to switch because the free roaming didn't cover the USA and the cost of roaming there was £6 a day. Their PAYG rates were also expensive in comparison. He lost interest when he found out that I was a PAYG customer which spoke volumes.
going to the continent was a nightmare.
In what way was it a nightmare?
My university back in the 90s which was a small college had issues with students handing in work. Specifically there was no way of knowing when things were submitted and if it was before the deadline. A technological solution was proposed where each student would use their magstripe card to identify themselves. They'd swipe in before handing over projects and that would give a date and timestamp. They asked someone to write a program to do this and then with the beta version ran a test. The test proved that a lot more work was needed because because lecturers had to upload the assignments with deadlines onto the system. There was no means of checking what had been handed in though so it was open to abuse. If you had two assignments due with different dates for submission you could hand in something late. You just handed in the earlier assignment and said it was for the one due later.
So they had books of forms printed that were filled in at reception with your submission. Half of the form was then handed in with your work and the other half you kept as a receipt. I may have borrowed a book of forms at some point to help make submitting my work easier. I certainly never gave them out to people.
Re: Upsetting non-techies can be hard
A lawyer I know was working on a case years ago involving technology. They hired an expert to help explain the complex nature of the case in court. The case was to do with the security of WiFi and how something might have been intercepted. The expert they were using was a new one because the previous bloke had "blotted his copybook". Apparently he was asked in a meeting how far away we were from 100% accurate voice recognition and he replied "By the year 2000 people won't be using a physical keyboard anymore you'll talk to your devices.
Well the millennium arrived and this was still not even on the distant horizon so they gave him the elbow. That and the expert on the other side in the case had proved to be a more expert expert and had virtually won the case for the other side.
Re: Great timing...
That's the secret of good comedy........timing.
Except there's nothing funny about this.
Re: Great timing...
That's the secret of good comedy........timing.
First large scale test of GDPR legislation perhaps?
I was thinking the very same thing and yes more than likely it will be. Could be a very big fine for BA or IAG. Someone just messaged me to say that they hope it was a script kiddie who hasn't been able to do anything with the data. I replied that I found that prospect more worrying i.e. the largest airline in the UK being able to be successfully attacked by a script kiddie.
Re: I never quite understood why one would get a bundle
I worked with someone who told me that his family was always short of cash even after payday. Part of the reason for this was that he was useless at working things out and spent money like it was going out of fashion. So lunch was always at the local sushi restaurant and food for the home bought at Wholefoods. However it was the mobile contract that made me concerned because he was on £45/month so £540 a year. He didn't see £540 he saw £45 which given the state of his finances even that should have been worrying him. This was to get the latest handset which he admitted he probably didn't need. All he did was WhatsApp, play Angry Birds and make the odd phone call. He had a work phone which he used for data and work calls. It was a two year contract and so he was paying over a grand for something he did not need. We worked out he could have been on PAYG as opposed to a contract and bought a sim free cheaper phone. Would have saved a small fortune but he wouldn't be told, there's no helping some people.
Re: Ahhh, memories...
This was back in the day when the company I worked for suddenly found itself giving free support to a competitor- they'd sell kit, usually by undercutting us, and then hand out our phone number when their customers came looking for technical support- so costing us money. In the end, if I found out that the kit was bought from the competition, I'd just tell the customer that it was faulty and to take it back to where they bought it and get a replacement. This forced the competitor into having to do technical support themselves.Worked at a retailer a while ago who sold a range of 3rd party products which were mostly "to order". There were other retailers who sold these products in other areas of the UK often at a discounted price which they weren't supposed to do. So a lady called up and asked the bemused sales assistant for information on her order. The poor sales assistant was unable to find the order on the computer and asked me for help (I knew I should have gone to the pub earlier). I asked the customer if she'd placed the order through this branch or another one with that chain. She hadn't it was with another distributor but she didn't think that was a problem. I said that we couldn't see her order as wouldn't be on our system. She told me I was being difficult and very painful "not what I expected". When I mentioned the data protection act she hissed down the phone that I was just like the last showroom she'd called. We weren't the first victims apparently and after phoning around found out she'd called a few places. The distributor she had ordered from shut at 5pm not 6pm and she couldn't get anything from them. Served her right for going to the cheaper distributor.
The fault was not his. The fault was having a password policy which could be fully complied with in a way which left his password easily guessable
Well the password guidelines stated that you weren't supposed to pick something easy to guess. He judt didn't think that his password was easy to guess. This was also a fair few years ago when an 11 digit password was supposedly harder to crack.After 5 attempts it would have locked the account anyway.
Had a new C level manager who complained that he didn't like having to reset his password every 90 days. My suggestion was that if he didn't do it (j.e. asked to be an exception) he was in breach of IT policy and leaving the business more open to attack. He then said he preferred to just use the one password. He elaborated on his theme for his passwords. The theme he confided was sports based so I logged in as him using his password. You should have seen the look on his face at that point. He'd used his football team plus a number as a password. I had guessed that he'd used the year his football club was founded at the end. He said "in this one instance" I could treat him like a child and explain how I'd done that. I pointed out his love for Arsenal was well known and I had guessed the year might be the suffix. A talk then followed on social engineering given he mentioned he supported Arsenal in interviews he gave to people. Nice guy and grasped the concepts I was talking about very quickly. He agreed that he did need to change his password more often.
Re: Obligatory Dilbert user ID
I moved and got a new GP as a result of this. I spotted on my first prescription from the new one that GP ID codes are last name then their first initial. I had a GP who suffered from their code when read outloud sounding like slang for a particular genital. It was a bit unfortunate that.
Yes on the Gemini that may or may not be the case but there are no guarantees that this will be the case on other manufacturers products. Look at the latest version of the Apple Watch for an example of a non removable one.
Re: Why does Apple want eSIMs?
No you've got the wrong end of the stick - no sim card makes a lock in easier. With a physical sim card I can just pop it out and swap networks very easily. On my devices I can buy a local sim when I arrive at the destination. As is mentioned I'd need a data connection to be able to get the details and terms and conditions of each carriers deals. Otherwise how would I know which one to go for with an esim. If the sim in my phone can be swapped out in seconds my mobile carrier can do bugger all about it. If I had an esim I wouldn't be able to just swap the thing out and the carrier I want to use has to work with the esim.
Re: religious co workers
Oh the "I love you" virus had that at a previous employer. We had IT support all over our computers cleaning them when we had an infection.. The cleaning took a long while and no one was allowed to touch their pc so we went to the pub en masse. They also beefed up our incoming mail filter to prevent it getting in again. However one day it reappeared because despite cleaning all the physical computers they didn't clean all the mailboxes. The intern one which was only used in the summer months had not been cleaned. So on the first day on the job for the new intern we suddenly had an influx of I love you emails. Sadly IT were a lot quicker at clearing up the infection and no pub time was permissable. One bloke did make it to the pub having left as soon as he saw the first email. He was called back before he could enjoy a pint.
Re: Couldn't close filing cabinet.
That's the way they're supposed to work but it's possible to defeat the mechanism quite easily. You could open one drawer a centimetre and then open another one. Also possible to do it permanently which is what we did for a couple that were secured to the floor with heavy duty bolts. The reason for doing this was because the cabinets were older and didn't shut properly meaning one drawer would stay open and the other two were stuck shut.
Re: Cash on the barrel head
when was the last time you got a receipt with your fish and chips?
A couple of weeks ago in the UK from the excellent Kerbisher and Malt (http://www.kerbisher.co.uk) since you asked.
Re: do you really want a complete list?
This amusing anecdote sounds alarmingly like harassment.
Well in that case so does having free samples of Tenna for Men sent to me at work. We got on very well together and the practical jokes were part and parcel of our working relationship. By the way she did that first
Re: do you really want a complete list?
I had fun with putting the address of your intended victim (from my company) into the from field in outlook. I knew that the email wouldn't send and I'd get a message saying that in my inbox. However the email now sitting in the sent box looked like it was from the victim. Move that into the inbox and it really looked like it had come from them. So I wrote an email that purported to show my desk mate, a not unattractive woman asking me out for a drink. I then sent it to myself supposedly from her and replied saying that I was flattered that she was interested in me. She looked up and said she had no idea who had sent that but it wasn't her. "Must have left my computer unlocked, sorry" I then sent a reply from "her" which said 'scrub the drink how about going straight to dinner instead?' By this point she was smelling a rat and had worked out it was me sending them. She said "That's fecking evil - but bloody brilliant. You have to show me how you did that, I want to have some fun!"
It wouldn't stand up to any scrutiny (serious or otherwise) but made for a good practical joke.
Re: Reminds me of a time...
One showroom I was at trying to run cable to a new location for the PDQ (card machine). I had used two four socket extension leads to create seven sockets coming off one 13A wall socket. I needed the PDQ to have a wall socket to itself and had labelled the extension sockets as for lighting only. The manager was worried that the wall socket might get overloaded with seven ornamental table lights plugged in. The bulbs on these things were a maximum of 40W and in a few of them they were low energy ones. The total came to under an amp of current from memory. I explained this and showed my working out because she wasn't 100%. I said it would be a different story if you had the microwave the kettle, a heater etc. on the same extension cord. She went white and showed me into the staff area where there was just that sort of thing going on despite ample power sockets being available. Some education followed with the staff about what not to do and new single socket extension cords were bought.
Re: "NEVER assume the architect knows best!"
Our main problem was actually the planners.
I live in a listed building and I feel your pain. I also had to provide support to a relative who was trying to replace a conservatory on their listed home in the country. The house on all sides is surrounded by a large number of trees. There is no line of site from the house to any of the neighbouring properties. I did a plan of the entire property marking in blue the immediate area around the house. However the planners rejected this saying they wanted a plan of the entire property.marked in red. The scale was also apparently wrong, mine was too large which I didn't have a clue about. When I said neither of these requirements were listed anywhere they sent through the guidance sheet (that they should have sent before) which listed them..
There was the architect I heard of who moved a satellite dish on the plans because it didn't "look right" there. They were ignorant of he fact that the new location had no line of sight to the satellite in question. Another was an interior designer who neglected to put more than two power sockets in a room designed to be a home office. The two sockets were located by the door and fairly useless as a result.
Re: Question about Impersonation/Spoofing
Is it possible to intercept calls to a particular number?
If you're a three letter agency then yes no problem I believe. Bit harder if you're a criminal I think. You've got to spoof both the IMEI and the IMSI and take the target phone off the network.
Re: WhatsApp or Signal protocol?
I don't know of anyone who uses it via a web browser. That's a new one for me, everyone just uses the app.
I like the
You won't believe this banking/shopping/smartphone etc.trick actually works!
because if I won't believe it why should I waste data looking at it? Besides I've blocked the most frequent purveyors of these things in noscript, so I'm not very likely to click on them anyway.
Well I could use the bus to get to work which takes about forty minutes to complete the journey. That's the journey time by bus and doesn't include the wait for the damn thing to turn up. Or I can take the underground (metro/subway/tube etc.) and be there in twenty. Not much of a choice and I don't think Google are going to find a faster route.
Re: Just give me one single number
Why can’t we have one number per person
The problem with just one number is that if it suffers from being fat fingered put of existence. If you don't have anything else, you're screwed! My employer has two ID numbers for staff:
One is for identifying the staff member who processed a transaction, it's printed on the receipt.
The second is used for payroll etc. and would not be public information.
It's a security precaution to prevent someone impersonating a staff member on the phone or by email with head office. There have been attempts to do this I believe they've been thwarted. Also they used 2FA it's not just the private id number that's used, a secondary piece of information is also required.
Re: No Excuses!
Only the people who are dodging paying tax, or on the run or should not be in the UK in the first place do not want ID cards......in other words the undersirables and the crooks.
Bring in ID cards NOW!
I'm a person who doesn't want ID cards, I'm not dodging paying tax or on the run. I've just had to send the HMRC a couple of grand for the second payment on account for this year. I'm not on the run and have been helping the Metropolitan Police with a case of card fraud that happened in one of our branches.
Re: Timing is everything
I had homework set one night for Chemistry where we were supposed to read two chapters of our textbook. There was to be a quiz the next day and we would be tested on our newly acquired knowledge. You handed your answers when completed to your neighbour and to mark them he would ask people what was written on the sheet in front of them. One of the first questions was regarding testing the PH in soil and asked for easiest way to do this. He asks my neighbour what my answer was and she tells him. I had written down to use an electric PH meter which whilst correct, wasn't using the chemical that we were supposed to have learned about in the text. I was told to stand up and explain the other method which I did. This involved adding chemical plus soil plus universal indicator and water. After the lesson I was taken to task for suggesting using a PH meter when I had clearly read the material concerned. I just said that adding a load of things to the soil wasn't as easy as pushing a meter into the soil which was what the question had asked.
Re: Not in IT...
I used to do a regulatory function as part of a job I had. I had to report items (and I'm being deliberately vague because I might identify myself) to a certain external body every month. One day I was told that I was about to become surplus to requirements and at risk of redundancy. And low it came to pass that I was made redundant. Suddenly they realised that I did a specialised job as part of my work and was asked to help. Could I train a senior manager and a cocky kid who had just graduated from university (in Classics) ? Not wanting to make waves I agreed to do two sessions of training for them. This was far less than they needed but I explained how to map and merge two sets of data from two different pieces of software/databases and generate the report. All you had to do then was chase the missing data which the report highlighted as not being there.
A month after I left I had a call from the university grad now panicking and much less cocky. She couldn't understand anything she'd written in notes taken in the training. I said she should talk to the manager but he couldn't remember anything apparently. I said I would charge to do more training or to come in and fix it at which point they were less interested. I believe they were fined far more than the cost of hiring me back for a day. They then hired a firm to produce an automated software method of doing this. That took a long time to iron out all the bugs and I understand more fines were issued. Turns out the manager had only been there to check that I was actually doing the training.
We do call £ "pound" and this weekend I had to tell someone about the pound/shilling/pence system, as he was wondering about the "weird 3 part prices" in his vintage catalog.
There was a clothing shop in a Devon town that had a load of old stock in it. It was one of those shops that was filled with walls of glass fronted drawers from years ago. I had a retiring colleague tell me during the handover week about it and that he knew the owner of it. He said I should visit whilst I was on holiday in the South West. Apparently if you could find any stock in pounds, schillings and pence you could buy it at that price.
Re: Dandy Highwaymen
Upvote for the Sir Pterry reference.
She said manufacturers were interested in licensing Amazon's FireOS Android.
Replace a Google-controlled ecosystem with one controlled by Amazon? Colour me unconvinced…
Speaking as someone typing this on a Fire HD8 I cannot but agree with you. Amazon is as bad if not worse than Google with the bloatware and other crap. I have disabled Alexa by turning on the parental controls but the Alexa app still attempts to contact Amazon. I've disabled the microphone and covered the cameras so it won't work anyway even if it gets through the NoRoot Firewall. On my phone I realised when this fine was announced I'd never seen an advert and never used Chrome or most of the Google bloatware. Google may be bad but Amazon are a very close second. The GUI on the FireOS is dreadful and I couldn't wait to install Launcher Hijack and Nova.
Re: Skype used to be widely used by families around the world to stay in touch......
Skype on Three was killed using the same excuse "done to ensure that all customers have the best possible Skype experience". For those of you who don't know that version dialed Skype using the PSTN and connected that way. That meant it didn't use your data allowance and the call to Skype was free. You didn't need to have a 3G signal or even credit on the phone and it worked very well. I used it extensively when calling abroad as calling freephone numbers were free. The phone cost me £20 and paid for itself in a few weeks. I was annoyed when they killed that.
I'm the same, I also use the computer wearing a balaclava in case they reverse the polarity of the monitor. You can't be too careful.
I've had a couple of these emails and whilst I know some people won't and will be scared of them I found them hilarious. As I have black electrical tape over the cameras on my tablets and phones it's highly unlikely that someone has any video from them. The tablets have physically disabled microphones so no sound from them either. I've alerted friends and family about this and asked them to spread the word that it's bollocks. If in the highly unlikely event someone had hacked my tablet they would have been confronted by a black screen and silence.
When I mentioned the subject at work to colleagues so they were forewarned, people found it funny too. One of the ladies said that most people did it and would be surprised if someone wasn't rubbing one in/out at some point. She also said that she'd read in the paper that it was healthy for blokes to do it as it may help reduce testicular cancer.
Re: Cashless society
I work in retail and at the store I was at last night somebody asked me if there was an issue with our card payments system. I said "don't thknk so" because I'd just watched a relatively high value Visa transaction go through without a hitch. That was with the card present in the showroom and proved my cabling work hadn't killed the PDQ machine connectivity. However it wasn't working for the staff member trying to take a customer payment over the phone. I'll check today whether that was a MasterCard or not. Customer was unfazed and said they'd pay by bank transfer after their card was declined.
Never believed Trump's promises to 'drain the swamp'
When the Orange One said he was going to drain the swamp they didn't realise he meant into his cabinet and other key posts.
At a previous employers a good few years ago they used an industry standard DOS program. It was still a DOS version despite XP now being the latest windows version. Each brand had a mission critical database on the system that you needed to be authorised for before you could read or edit the data. The security was such that giving a user a level of access for each database were possible. The program needed at least one administrator to be set to assign other users their access level. There was read only/read and write only/administrator (with ability to dump data out). They also required you to license each database each month by manually inputting a code they gave you every 30 days.
However I spotted a flaw with this because after entering the code it just left a licensed database on the server. If you had a copy of the program you could simply copy the database file/files to your computer and use that to access the data. You just used your own login on your version of the program and bingo you had access until the code needed to be reentered. So you could have a month of access doing that to a competitors data. Once you did though it was easy as admin on your version to dump the data out. Of course you had to get access first but a disgruntled employee or a hacker could do that. I pointed this out to both my employers and the firm concerned. The employers were quite concerned and took measures to restrict access to where the databases were stored on the system. The software company didn't think it was a major problem and it would doubtless be fixed in the Windows version when it arrived shortly. The problem with that was the windows version had been "arriving shortly" for some time.
Re: Only cracking I have done is
When I was younger I did the same with padlocks. The cheaper ones I remember could be opened by just turning one way almost 360 degrees then the other way the same before going back to a final stopping position. Before TSA locks came in I opened the padlock on a friends case when they forgot the code. Betting me £100 I couldn't do it in under a minute was a mistake. You just had to put tension on the lock and turn the dials.
Re: Bagpuss, Clangers, Ivor the engine and Basil Brush
It's not often that I get very upset at someone's passing (outside of the family) but I did when I heard this. My childhood was built on watching the entire Smallfilms productions. I raised a glass on Sunday night in your honour. RIP there need to be more people like you in the world.