Call Me Impressed Mr. Scammer

Caught a smart scammer today.

I wouldn’t classify any scammer as smart but, this one had his big boy panties on. He had a plan and executed it well, I was impressed. I am never easily impressed!

The call I received was from (843) 873-2196….spoofed number, of course. The caller was a very nice fellow named Daniel Walters. He had a funny accent though. I think maybe he was french, or Texan, or an odd mix of two year old and Australian. I can’t be sure which but I struggled a bit to understand him.

Now Mr. Walters informed me my Social Security Number had been suspended and an arrest warrant had been issued for me! Panic set in. My life rapidly passed before my eyes…my world was ending…how could I be in so much trouble? Secretly, I was laughing maniacally inside!

I LOVE receiving scam calls. I admit it. I’m a scam call addict. I secretly get a thrill out of tormenting them. The longer I can make the call last the happier I am. If I can get them to cuss me out I have succeeded in a touch of retribution for all the annoyance they cause. It really is the simple things in life.


I quizzed Mr. Walters on his badge number – Federal Badge ID # 417J2741. (He was very forthcoming with details!) , a call back number to reach him if we get disconnected – 1-800-1172-1213 , his extension – 209, etc.  Very quick with the answers. No hesitation. Almost spooky! Definitely believable.

Here is where being impressed comes in. The phone number he provided appears real. If you call the number it points you to a legitimate government URL – The phone number and the URL, ironically, are to report scams to the Office of the Inspector General. The catch is, on the call, you have to enter your Social Security Number. I was not willing to risk it. All I can say is…..

Very nicely done Mr. Scammer!

Now back to the call. At no time did Mr. Walter ask me to send money, or if I wanted to take care of it over the phone, etc. I was a bit disappointed. He did continually stress they were coming to take me away (ha ha, hee, hee…to the funny farm….And now that song is going to be stuck in my head the rest of the day!)

My fatal mistake. The mistake which cut the call short, and took away my fun….

I told him I was talking to my cousin, who was in law enforcement, while Mr. Walter and I were speaking. I informed him my cousin was completely confused. He hadn’t heard a word about an arrest warrant for me. To be honest, my cousin would be the first one to volunteer to come get me if I had a warrant. He’d do it to either laugh  at me or read me the riot act for being stupid.

Mr. Walter did hang up rather abruptly after my comment. Very rude! It did give us time to analyze the call and what we could have done better.

Oh, did I say ‘we’? Ya, well, when any of us here in IT get one of ‘those’ calls. We put it on speaker and plot our comments. Whoever gets the most cuss outs wins for the week. Like I said, it really is the little things!

Next time though….I’m going to have to play the damsel in distress. The guys have decided my protective cop family ploy was a dud. I have to agree. Next time, tears!

May all your annoying scam calls end comically. AND, if you are one of the scam callers I hope you reach our IT team – we’ve been practicing just for you! 🙂

Yours Faithfully,
R3b3l G33k



And Away We Go!

Planning a trip away from the office, for any length of time, takes a bit of finagling.

One must….

  1. Put out all the fires which have magically invaded all aspects of your week prior to departure.
  2. The more fires you put out, the more fires arrive which make you contemplate taking up drinking.
  3. You try to never leave during the first week of the month – it is an unwritten rule in IT. If you are absent the first week of the month you wish everyone luck and then turn your phone off (<– this is wishful thinking. I have been hunted down because I didn’t answer my phone. IT people don’t mess around!)
  4. Drag your work laptop with you. You will inevitably need it.
  5. Never forget to set your “Out of Office”. People don’t pay attention to it but, you can at least say you set it to CYA.
  6. Try to finish up all the projects you can – you will fail due to all the fires but, you still try.
  7. Never look back on the day you leave. If you do look back, someone is going to stop you with a question, or need help, or want you to look at something, or….you will never make it out alive!
  8. Run! Run and never go back! At least until you miss the madness and the crazy pull of the IT world sucks you back in. Or, you remember how many emails will be waiting for you when you get back and you surrender to the overwhelming thought of, “Why didn’t I take up drinking?”



Yours Faithfully,
R3b3l G33k


If You Lock the Doors…


Am I the only one who questions people’s intelligence? Please tell me I’m not

Case in point…

I’m sitting at a red light. It begins raining cats and dogs. I notice a beautiful Mercedes convertible, with its top down, sitting in front of our high end jewelry store.

Suddenly, a women runs out of the store. Jumps in the convertible, rolls the windows up and locks the door. Does not put the top up! She then runs back into the store.

Thankfully the light turns green at this point. The logic of her actions escapes me….


Yours Faithfully,
R3b3l G33k




The Thing About Passwords…

In the world of IT…Passwords Matter.

They keep our computers, data, and random trivialities secure. Each employee is provided their own username…they set the password…security at its most basic, right?

Well…in theory it works in that manner. Unless….

You have a group of people (whole department) who share their username/password with each other. They have it written down so each person can access their computer/email. The reasons?

“Well, we can’t do their work if they’re out sick or on vacation without. Now can we?”

“They need to be able to work my email. I hate reading them.” – This is the Manager of the departments statement

Part of me is dumbfounded. The other part of me remembers two of these users are in our hall of Infamous Clickers for failing in our Phishing Campaigns.

I am at a complete loss….


Yours Faithfully,
R3b3l G33k


Don’t Do It! If You Do…Make it Funny

Cybersecurity can be….entertaining.

Case in point…

Ran a phishing campaign on the whole company.

Every single employee opened the email.

Only 3 clicked on the link within the email. Here’s where it gets entertaining…

First Link Clicker submitted a ticket (WooHooo!). The ticket states:

“I received an email from ‘Internal Person’ but the link is broke. It takes me to some Phishing site. Can you take a look so I can get to the right site?”

Problem with this is:

  1. She clicked on the link!
  2. She didn’t read the landing page – If she would have read the ‘broken link’ page she would have discovered it was a page all about how she’d been Phished by IT – how to spot Phishing emails, and what to do if you click on the link, or enter credentials.

She did show us, definitively, who our weakest link is – pun intended.


Second Link Clicker did not submit a ticket (Boo!) but, they did come back to the office to report:

  1. They received the email and thought it was suspicious.
  2. Left it overnight because they thought it was suspicious.
  3. Didn’t hear anything about the email being suspicious so…
  4. Clicked on the link in the email to see what it was about but…
  5. Wasn’t sure what to do since it didn’t take them to a log in page…

Oh, and did I mention this was all AFTER we (IT) had sent out an email about the ‘suspicious’ email. Telling everyone not to click on the link, and to delete it.

And there we have weak link number 2.

The third link clicker has not come forward. We will find them. We will catch them next time. We will smack their hands for clicking the link. For now though…the two above will go down in the hall of Infamous Clickers.


I can’t wait to send out the next campaign!

Yours Faithfully,
R3b3l G33k



Error it is!

In the land of IT error messages are both a blessing and a curse.

Actual error messages:

  • Unacceptable SQL statement.
  • The statement is too long or too complex.
  • Illegal use of the specified keyword.
  • FETCH cannot make an INSENSITIVE cursor SENSITIVE. <– Is this an HR issue? 
  • You tried to create an object that already exists
  • Operation operation is not allowed on system databases
  • The clauses are mutually exclusive                             <–Monogamy in the tech world?
  • The DELETE rule must be DELETE-rule                      <– Persistent isn’t it?
  • Table table-name cannot be created in specified table space table-space-name because it already contains a table
  • The statement is rejected by data definition control support. reason reason-code
  • Unavailable resource. Someone else is locking your data.

Error messages are sooooo helpful!



Yours Faithfully,
R3b3l G33k