So You Followed Proper IT Security Procedures and Still Got Burned? (Part 1 of 2)

I got my laptop computer shipped back to me today and its working perfectly fine – which upsets me a great deal. You see, the computer isn’t supposed to be working.

The manufacturer’s finest customer service reps assured me repeatedly that the only fix for my password-locked machine was replacing the motherboard. For the price they quoted me for that critical piece of hardware, I could have just bought a brand-new laptop.  They thought they had me over a barrel.

How did I get into this mess? Ironically, it happened because I did exactly what I was supposed to do to ensure proper security on my laptop. While setting up the computer, I created a complex password with numbers, upper and lower case letters and a punctuation mark to block unauthorized access. To use my computer for anything at all, you had to have the proper log-in password.

It was working fine. Then I downloaded updates and patches, to ensure optimum performance and security. The computer restarted and… my password didn’t work anymore.

I typed in my password. No good. I tried again. No dice. Fine, let’s try something fancy.

But my usual techie work-arounds had no effect. That’s when I called the manufacturer… and they told me that since my warranty had expired, they couldn’t help me reset the password. I had to go through their channel partners. All they could do was offer their sympathies, and a motherboard for $1,300. They told me there was no other solution. So no computer, no encrypted data.

I contacted the business partners and they exhibited absolutely no interest in helping me. F $#%# s

You guessed right. This got me mad. I had done exactly what I was supposed to do according to the manufacturer’s own procedures for setting up their computers. And now I had to pay through the nose because they hadn’t tested properly for this bug back in development.

I wasn’t going to give in to the manufacturer’s shakedown. I made a phone call…