This blog post is an insider’s light-hearted response to: 16 Reasons You Hate Your IT Department
1. Password policy
Our passwords exist to protect this organisation’s sensitive data. Passwords expire every 30 days, not every 90 days. Passwords are meant to be secret. If we notice you’ve written them down or sellotaped them to your monitor, you will be instantly dismissed, in accordance with this organisation’s security policy that you have to electronically sign, once a month, when you adopt a new password. Passwords must contain at least one upper case, at least one lower case, at least one special character, at least one number, at least one letter, and must be between 8-16 characters in length. The password system will not allow you to recycle passwords, or use any part of your name, your address, your date of birth. The password system will not allow you to change a numeric value and keep on using the same core password. This is about information security. This is about keeping sensitive data away from where it should not go. This is about protecting the data we are entrusted with. Are you incapable of understanding this?
2. Blocking webpages
You do know that you don’t have a right to view Facebook, or check your Twitter every five minutes? You do know that viewing the Daily Mail website is punishable by death*? Our webfilter exists to protect this organisation from people viewing inappropriate content. We know that you’ve been googling X-Factor, I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here, and Strictly Come Dancing. You want access to a website? All you have to do is put three lines on an email to the Security Officer. You can’t be bothered to do that, but instead you can write 45 lines on Facebook criticising our security policy? Your internet access has been revoked for two months. Deal with it.
*possibly not, but it should be.
3. Never being able to print anything ever
Oh come on, how stupid do you think we are? We know you printed 73 full-colour invitations to your birthday when you thought everyone had gone home. We know you printed your entire holiday photo album early last Tuesday morning. And we know you used a multi-function printer to send copies of your arse to your boyfriend (and also to Kevin in accounts. And Jim the security guard). So now your manager’s budget is being charged for everything you print. It’s for your manager to authorise your print jobs, not IT.
4. “We’ve switched off your ethernet cables because… reasons.”
The reason the ethernet cables have been switched off is because WE HAVE IMPLEMENTED WIFI ACROSS THE BUILDING AS YOU HAVE BEEN TOLD IN THE LAST THREE STAFF BRIEFINGS. We have done this because the greater mobility means instant access to our corporate information systems from any room. It also means that the cableless infrastructure means easier staff moves; desk positions are no longer tied to obsolete network points. This is better for you. This is better for us. We’re sorry that you like living in 1995, but come and join us in the 21st Century, we think you’ll enjoy it.
5. Obsolete technology
You might think your laptop at home is better than your laptop at work, but let’s be honest, you only use your home laptop for Facebook, Twitter, Plenty of Fish, Match and eHarmony. If you tried to run the same applications and utilities on your home laptop that your work laptop runs, you’d soon be straight back to Cash Converters to try and upgrade it.
6. The antivirus is worse than a virus
No it isn’t. And while we’re on this point, that nasty little infection you introduced from your home laptop via that memory stick cost the organisation 263 staff-hours. Still, we’ve stopped the possibility of that reocurring – all of the USB ports on all of the work machines have been permanently disabled for everyone, except those with an encrypted device.
7. The solution to any minor problem is to wipe the whole machine
Well yes. It takes 8 minutes to re-image a laptop with the corporate desktop and applications. And you can’t save data to your machine, as you know. All data must be saved to your personal network drive or the corporate network drive. So 8 minutes of re-imaging a laptop is actually more cost effective. You have a problem with a public sector organisation being cost effective now?
8. Internet Explorer
You have Office 365, feel free to embrace the same technology that everyone else in the building uses.
9. Anything useful is immediately shot down as OMGSECURITYRISK
Even a Daily Mail reader like you (sneer) should know that information security is a fundamental part of this organisation. The cleaners have been security vetted. Every single employee has been security cleared. Contractors are vetted and have to sign an NDA every single day they work here. You have successfully completed a security vetting (though we’ll admit we are not altogether sure how, especially given the information you regularly post on Facebook about colleagues!). And the last person who attempted to connect their laptop to a dongle was frogmarched out of the building by security, had their personal items posted to them and is, even two years later, still out of work. For further clarification please take the trouble to read the security policy that you digitally sign every month.
10. Only supporting Macs. Or only supporting PCs
Yeah, we’d love to be able to support more tools, if we’re honest. We are, after all, just geeks. But the ‘we only support one type of technology’ comes down to £s. If you want the IT overhead of this organisation to be significantly increased, we suggest you start an ePetition arguing for us to support Windows, Apple, Ubuntu, FreeBSD and every other flavour of Unix operating system, and ensuring that these devices can be made secure and managed remotely.
11. You have to apologise to visitors, when they ask if there’s wifi
You do apologise to visitors when they ask if there’s WiFi, we’ve noticed. Don’t you think it’s time you told them the access credentials to the Visitors WiFi Network? Of course, this would mean you’d have to extract your head from your arse, stop being a self-important, denigrating arsehole and actually learn something about your workplace, but hey, you can’t have it both ways, eh?
12. One bloke has that “I read all your email” look about him
Look, we’ve all got that ‘I read all your email’ look. Because you keep forwarding to All Email Users those fucking cat photographs. And while we’re talking about your use of the All Email Users address book, you really need to stop sending those chain letters, or your next career move will be sideways (out of the front door). Can you stop now?
If your manager doesn’t think you should have photoshop because you spent four days photoshopping photographs of cats, you need to have a discussion with her. Until she says otherwise, you don’t get a photoshop licence. And yes, we do know that you took an illegal copy of Photoshop home with you. We’re docking the licence fee from your salary next month.
14. Using the intranet is like travelling back in time to using the web in 1994. Except worse
In this organisation, IT doesn’t provide the content, or deal with the design of the intranet – in what backward organisations is this still the case? We just provide the tools (php front-end, and an Oracle database to drive the website. You complaining to IT about how the intranet looks or feels is exactly like you complaining to your car mechanic because you don’t like the view out of the window.
15. Everything is (supposedly) backed up, but god help you if you actually want to recover anything
Everything really is backed up. Your personal network drive and all of the corporate network drives are backed up. We do, however, note that your excuse for not turning in that piece of work last week was ‘the file disappeared and IT can’t find the backup’, but we all know the truth here, don’t we?
16. They make using a computer so laborious you start longing for simpler times
We’re really sorry you think working within a secure, stable, IT environment is laborious. Maybe you should take a few hours, on your next sick day, to reconsider your current career?