I walked into an unlocked classroom yesterday to diagnose a reported printer problem, and sat for 15 minutes at a teacher’s unattended, logged-in workstation, with their car keys and iPhone 5 sitting cheerfully on the desk next to the mouse.

Now, last time I encountered this level of wilful ignorance of security, I emailed the Head from their account to resign, drove their car out to the nearest clifftop, and left it there with the door open and engine running after sending a text to their spouse reading “GOODBYE CRUEL WORLD”. However, my parole officer has been discouraging me from this sort of behaviour, so this time I just locked their workstation and left them a post-it note.

I think I might be going soft in my old age.

About The Angry Technician

The Angry Technician is an experienced IT professional in the UK education sector. Normally found in various states of annoyance on his blog. All views are those of his imaginary pet dog, Howard.

7 responses to “Unsecured”

  1. The_Crust says :

    Not necessarily going soft but I think a definite missed opportunity there AT.

    Sadly such opportunities rarely arise where I work – colleagues are either well educated about workstation security, or only too aware of the practical jokes us IT types are liable to play on them given half the chance!

  2. lescot says :

    And these are the people we have teaching our children??????? Imagine what the USA will look like and BE LIKE in 50 years after those students who have been educated by such irresponsible teachers as this, hummmmmmmm!!!! Maybe it’s a good thing I’m over 90 already and won’t be around to see it happen. Les

  3. Tom says :

    There is/was a proper term for such a thing…


    Seems to have fallen out of common parlance mind.

  4. ScottishTech says :

    I had that with one department who would repeatedly do this – they’re one of the main groups which saw an enforced log-out-through-inactivity added to our pupil attendance system.

    When I mentioned this to them, I was basically told that it’s OK – they’re good kids in their dept.

    The incident which stopped this from happening didn’t rely on me leaving suicide notes to loved ones, but it was (almost) equally effective in stopping it from happening again..

    I came into the class in question at 11:30am. The repeat offender had come in at 8-ish, checked their email and then went on a training course, leaving car and house keys sitting on the desk along with a USB pen drive which I knew from a recent file-recovery support call almost certainly still had their CV with house address on.

    I moved the aforementioned precious items back into their staff base, and left a note and an email.

    What followed the next day was an earbashing of some magnitude with tears and snotters where the staff member was rather irked at discovering their shiny had gone from the desk and promptly blamed me for removing the items and causing them distress and how could I be so thoughtless at only telling them via an email?!?!

    When I asked didn’t they read the note on the desk, it was met with a blank expression. Turns out one of their “good kids” thought it’d be a jolly good wheeze to nick the note. Splendid.

  5. zenemu says :

    What’s a teacher doing with an IPhone and a car? Obviously being paid too much!

    • ScottishTech says :

      If they’re anything like the ones who have ’em here, then they’re likely being busy trying to tell anyone who’ll listen why the entire curriculum will crumble if they don’t get an IPad. In spite of the fact we don’t have wireless in any of our schools (don’t laugh) and our dept doesn’t support the Mac or anything of the fruit-logo flavour.

  6. Joseph Hume says :

    When I was working in corporate IT, I had wandered into my boss’s office and found his computer unlocked and logged in. When I replyed and thanked him for his glowing email of me and my technical abilities he sent to the then CEO of the company, our policy of locking the workstations finally sunk in. – BOFH

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