For anyone who wasn’t yet aware, I work in IT. That means I work with computers. I work to maintain the stability, security, and functionality of a corporate-class network. Rather than try to accomplish this by enforcing a dictator-esque regime on our network, I instead tend to pre-emptively block things that can harm our network and trust our employees not to do anything too stupid.
You know, like print off over 500 KFC coupons at once.
In a colossal lack of judgement, Oprah announced on her show and website that if you go to a certain site, you can get a coupon for a free meal at KFC. Evidently, she forgot to mention to everyone that you actually have to download some specific software, install it on your machine, and give it access to your firewall to get the coupon. Now, anyone who’s ever heard of Spyware is certainly thinking the same thing and guess what . . . you’re right!
I’ve now had to re-image three machines today, install anti-malware programs on 5 others, and replace two toner cartridges in our high capactiy printers. I’m not sure what all this software does (since the effects seem to vary by quite a bit), but I know it’s doing something! Sitting at my console, I can see our firewall passing along a LOAD of unknown packet traffic that wasn’t there yesterday, and they’re all going to the same site.
So thank you, Oprah. I realize that you must have organized this whole deal with KFC very closely to ensure that it was actually going to work (and, you know, not cause problems). But maybe the next time you’re re-lining your pockets with an endorsement deal, you can try to remember that you’re attaching your name to the outcome?