Security – A Road Filled With Obstacles!

This week I’m an entirely different kind of road warrior. Usually I’m the type that lugs my laptop from city to city telecommuting my way across the nation. This month I’ve had a few weeks in the office – my real office in downtown Richmond, not my virtual office. The complaint I have is the treacherous commute from the West End into the city via I-64 West and I-195 South. The roads are atrocious! One day recently I thought my entire tire would be swallowed by a pothole – let me rephrase that – a pot crater!

I’ve been so distracted by trying to avoid the gaping holes in the road I forgot to be a good defensive driver – keeping alert to what other cars around me are doing. In the few decades that I have been driving, I’ve become quite adept at avoiding road obstacles the likes of branches, traffic cones, the occasional lost shoe and most important – road kill. However, the vast quantity of craters lately has made it impossible to navigate the roads without falling into a few holes during my daily commute. I haven’t even been able to enjoy my new 100% Funk CD because of the irritating and damaging potholes.

black and white quote board

Last weekend, I made the trek to my mother’s house and finally hit a nice patch of road (Route 17) and was able to let my mind wander a bit while humming along to War’s “Low Rider.” It occurred to me that maintaining a highway system is a lot like running an IT department. Seriously, think about it – what do they call roads and bridges – infrastructure. What are our computer systems running on – the infrastructure. I’m like a little IP packet on the network! Do you see what direction I’m headed (pun intended)?

Much like a highway, our IT systems need constant care to allow optimum efficiency for our users. Ah ha! – Potholes are bad and must be patched. Think of security patches as layers on top of infrastructure. They are security devices placed on the infrastructure to alert operators to potentially hazardous situations or situations that require a security response.

For example, our last patch came out while we were on our way to the airport. Actually, it was sent to us by courier (using common carrier methods). Apparently, the courier had a bad case of computer flu or something. He was very ill and needed something for his stomach, but he had no money for a plane ticket so the courier was sending the computer equipment under the blanket of night with a desperate sigh.

That patch took us by train to the house where my mother is residing. She was sleeping at the time and so it was only me and the patch sent by courier for my mother to receive. It was a nice, soft blanket made for a child to snuggle in. My mother was so happy to see the patch and we went to bed at 11:00 p.m. she had it all worked out and was just waiting for me to come home from college.

By 2:00 in the MORNING, my mother was fast asleep and I took the patch home with me. I spent the remainder of the night working on the laptop, phonetinking him up and making sure everything was running smoothly before leaving for the day.

By 3:00 in the MORNING, I was fast asleep in my own bed – again, for both reasons mentioned above.

[email protected]

My mother’s computer was [email protected] I returned from college, my mother had a brand new computer so I knew she had a new computer at home.

I spent the remainder of the night working on my laptop. Iventually clicked on the email link that she had sent me and noticed it didn’t take me to my inbox at all. It took me to my bank’s website, which seemed normal. Then something didn’t feel right and I wanted to get help, so I called PayPal.

Once I talking to PayPal, they told me that my account was being suspended because of fraudulent transactions that had been taking place for months. They traced it to a fraudulent attempted transaction that I had taken part in, for which I had paid $347.85. All of this information came pouring in, via Norton Online Antivirus, as I was Suspended by them due to the fact that their system had been hacked by some kind of a virus.

I started to get a bit concerned now, as my bank had already contacted me several times regarding this issue, and it seemed like they really wanted to know why I had suspended my account. These calls were getting a little long in duration and I could sense that something was wrong.

Before I came to PayPal, I would check with my bank to see if they would conduct the investigation themselves and independently discover whether or not my account had been compromised.

white wooden door near gray security camera
Security – A Road Filled With Obstacles!
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