Before You Revenge Delete All Your Firm's Data, You Might Want To Make Sure You're Really Getting Fired

from the just-a-suggestion dept

We've seen a few different stories over the years about fired employees who take revenge on their former employer's computer systems -- usually deleting important data. It's amazing that these people don't expect to get caught (and receive a punishment much worse than losing your job). We even wrote about one case where an employee, who was afraid he was going to get fired, put some code in place to delete data... just in case. He also got caught, though no damage was done to the computer systems. However, down in Florida, details are coming out on an even more ridiculous situation. An employee at an architectural firm saw a help wanted ad in the newspaper that looked similar to her job description, and included her boss's name and phone number. So she drove to the office on Sunday and deleted seven years of architectural drawings and blueprints from the computer system. The only problem? She wasn't about to be fired. The job listing was actually for her boss's wife's company, not her own. Of course, now she has been fired. And, oh yeah, arrested, too.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    identicon
    Jesse McNelis, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 12:59am

    ...and the company restored from their backups and continued on as if nothing had happened.
    If disguntled employees can destroy you data then your IT department isn't doing their job properly.

     

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  2.  
    identicon
    Alex, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 1:04am

    Re:

    Maybe they learned from BOFH and speed up their backups by changing the tape device to /dev/null...

     

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  3.  
    identicon
    Gary, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 1:16am

    No kidding. 2 people should be fired. Her, and the IT manager if they actually did lose that 7 years of data.

     

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  4.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 1:19am

    .. and if you plan do to damage, do it remotely using other credentials ..

     

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  5.  
    identicon
    YeaRight, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 1:34am

    They were going to fire her and she knew it. Please, we were just advertising exactly the same job as you have, and using your boss's name and phones number as the contact info ? but...it was really my wifes company and they do exactly the same thing ?

    And she didn't know what was going on..knew the vibe in the office was just ever so comfy ? yet felt so strongly that doom was about to overtake her that she drove to the office on a Sunday to fook over the data base ?

    Good for her ! :-)

     

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  6.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 3:01am

    Re:

    Talk about an idiotic voice of support, YeaRight.

     

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  7.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 3:39am

    Who let the Blondes out?

     

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  8.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 3:47am

    Icing on the cake

    ... and on top apparently the data ended up being recovered.

     

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  9.  
    identicon
    Unanmous Coward, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 4:14am

    French roast is better than Arabic most of the time.

     

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  10.  
    identicon
    Haywood, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 5:42am

    Recovery software is so good now........

    I recently recovered all of a friends data from a drive that had been formated. I don't know if it would recover from a write all zeros attempt, but most users don't even know that exists.

     

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  11.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 6:02am

    Re:

    Your talking two different things jackass-- Beans is different than roast. For example, you can have an Arabic (bean) French Roast (roast).

     

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  12.  
    icon
    chris (profile), Jan 25th, 2008 @ 6:09am

    the truth about recovery

    backups are often made but not often tested. unless a company is doing disaster recovery drills on a semi-regular basis, chances are the backup system hasn't ever been used for a full scale recovery operation.

    the rule of backups is to make them often, but do everything you can to make sure you never need them.

    also, reading and decompressing from tape is very slow. you don't notice it so much when you are recovering handfuls of files when they are accidentally deleted or corrupted, but hundreds of gigs could take days to restore.

     

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  13.  
    icon
    James (profile), Jan 25th, 2008 @ 7:09am

    Re:

    No, it should be "Who let the blondes out?...Duh, Duh,Duh...

     

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  14.  
    identicon
    Elie, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 7:14am

    why was she reading it

    if she was so content with her job, what was she doing looking through the help wanted section in the first place? Seems like this just accelerated the inevitable.

     

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  15.  
    identicon
    Just Me, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 7:21am

    re: YeaRight

    "Good for her ! :-)"
    Bulls__t!
    Even if she KNEW she was or was NOT going to be fired, and even if her employer did post a wanted add for her job without telling her it is still not her data to destroy.
    If they want to fire her that's their choice. If they want to hire a replacement without telling her that's also their choice.

    If she decides to take a hissy fit and delete data that is someone else's property and potentially ruin their livelihood then she SHOULD be thrown in jail!

     

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  16.  
    identicon
    Michael G., Jan 25th, 2008 @ 7:24am

    Surprised!?

    How didn't they recognize the fact she had a few screws loose when they hired her.

     

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  17.  
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    drkkgt, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 7:55am

    Re: Surprised!?

    maybe she was one of the architecs (especially since she had access,) in which case how would you know?

     

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  18.  
    identicon
    Nismoto, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 7:55am

    Re: Re:

    lol!

    I almost forgot about BOFH. Thanks for the memories.

     

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  19.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 7:59am

    Re: Re:

    ARABICA

     

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  20.  
    identicon
    Chris B, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 8:39am

    Maybe...

    they were really going to fire her. And maybe they did the ad behind her back because they knew she wouldn't take it well. Obviously she didn't take it well even if she was misunderstanding the situation.

     

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  21.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 9:11am

    What about this?

    My first job out of college was as an Engineer (A real one, not software - we're still about one generation away from SW being engineering; it's still "craft" ;)

    This was a long time ago, the new "thing" was a NetWare network.

    Anyway, the company used illegal copies of AutoCad (10). They paid for something like 5 and 30 engineers were using it. They also had other applications someone in sales would buy and then distribute to everyone. There was no licensing, I know for a fact.

    The company was bought and was being chopped (this is one recession ago, than you GHWB). As the youngest engineer, I was going to go first.

    A week before my escort out of the building, I had setup a command to replace the logout with a program that deleted all the illegal copies that *I* was using (that the company supplied me with, mind you). It also deleted all my personal data (not business data). All reports, designs, mechanical drawings, etc. were left intact. I did not report the company for their licensing violations although I thought about it. But it seemed too "sour grapes". And who am I to do IP protection that I don't entirely agree with?

    So security escorted me to my desk to pickup my briefcase and logout. And except for engineering documentation, all trace of me and any illegal software I had used left their system as I walked out the front door.

    Mostly I was concerned about them having any personal data *and* any trace of the fact that I had used illegal software. I usually don't keep personal data on a business computer or network anyway, but there's always some leak.

    Wrong?

     

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  22.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 10:43am

    Re: What about this?

    And now you give it all away by giving up your IP Address here ;)

     

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  23.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 11:12am

    Re: Re: Re:

    I like Hawaiian Kona Beans with a medium/dark roast blend.

     

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  24.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 11:24am

    Re: What about this?

    Companies that don't license software have other issues in how they own, manage, and operate the business. Not surprising they were bought.

     

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  25.  
    identicon
    Buzz, Jan 25th, 2008 @ 5:34pm

    My take on this...

    HAHAHAHAAHAHAHAHAAHAHHAHAHA...

    ... idiot...

     

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  26.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 26th, 2008 @ 10:21am

    "but...it was really my wifes company and they do exactly the same thing ?"

    Looks like they do, just about.

    firm's site: http://www.seharchitects.com/

    probably owner's wife (interior design): http://vibhahutchins.com/

     

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  27.  
    identicon
    Daniel Khoo, Jan 29th, 2008 @ 10:42pm

    How to get revenge, and not get arrested.

    1) instead of deleting data, how about stealing it. Make a copy to sell (after you get fired).

    2) instead of deleting the data directly, how about infecting the computer system with a data-deleting/corrupting computer virus, preferable one that does not activate immediately, but spends a few days/weeks spreading, before the data-deletion/corruption function activates.

    3) a combination of 1 & 2.

    4) installing a backdoor, so that after you are fired, you can remotely access the system, delete data, and remove the backdoor. If there's somebody you don't like, you could do it using their account, so they get blamed. Of course, usually, only the IT staff can do this.

    5) insert obscure errors into the data files, taking care to "touch" the files so that the dates are not changed. This being an architectural firm, there's plenty of potential to kill and maim innocent victims. Or cause a huge financial loss (see http://failblog.wordpress.com/2008/01/03/fail-bridge/)

     

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  28.  
    identicon
    this is crap, Feb 10th, 2008 @ 2:19am

    Re: re: YeaRight

    she should have burned the place down with them in it

     

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  29.  
    identicon
    John, Jul 1st, 2009 @ 1:30pm

    employers

    If they fired her the deserve what they got. Employers are not always right. They destroy peoples lives on a regular basis. If your company is loseing money then YOU should take the loss, not inocent employees who are the bread and butter that helped you get filthy rich in the first place. I would delete all the files and burn down the office. Remember, Employees are people, and should not be dispossed of due to greed.

     

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  30.  
    identicon
    mentor, Dec 20th, 2010 @ 11:48am

    Personally I think, that the best way to take revenge on your former employer is to forget of him and to find better job.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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