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Cisco VP To Memo Leaker: Finding You Now 'My Hobby' 312

netbuzz writes "A Cisco vice president, who happens to have been a CIA operations officer in the 1980s, believes that the employee who recently leaked an internal company memo to a blogger committed corporate treason and violated a 'family' trust. In an email sent to Cisco employees, the executive invites the anonymous leaker to come clean, concedes that's unlikely, and adds, 'so I will now make (finding) you my hobby. Ask around (and) you will find out that I like to work on my hobbies.' That email got leaked and published as well. The tempest was sparked by a series of stories in Network World examining a host of bidding and contract questions involving the California higher education system."
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Cisco VP To Memo Leaker: Finding You Now 'My Hobby'

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  • by swschrad ( 312009 ) on Thursday November 08, 2012 @07:11PM (#41925827) Homepage Journal

    both of which are generally seen as dangerous behavior by HR types, and policy manuals generally, like those in my outfit, add that such actions are subject to discipline up to and including termination.

    make it your hobby, pinhead, to discover which dictionary definition of "termination" you are going to be facing.

  • Re:Dead giveaway (Score:5, Interesting)

    by dougmc ( 70836 ) <> on Thursday November 08, 2012 @07:15PM (#41925861) Homepage

    1. Write software to do steps #1 and #2 automatically
    2. Sell said software.
    3. Profit!

    I actually suggested this to my employer a decade ago when they had a similar problem with a leaked memo, and they said "thanks" but never followed up on it. I haven't gone looking, but I'll bet there's software out there that does it already.

  • Re:Jimmies Rustled (Score:5, Interesting)

    by 19thNervousBreakdown ( 768619 ) <davec-slashdot&lepertheory,net> on Thursday November 08, 2012 @07:20PM (#41925921) Homepage

    So wait, the Internet Toughguy act isn't a cool grown-up thing to do?

    You'd think a CIA super-spy would have some neat tracking tricks in a guaranteed-to-be-leaked memo, but a visual inspection of the code shows nada, and as for hidden Unicode characters: nope []. It'd be interesting to get multiple copies of the memo from different places to compare, but there's nothing suspicious I can see there.

    The thing about confidential information is, there's no such thing at all once you go beyond 10 people or so. More like 3-4 can, maybe, sometimes, keep a secret, but that's pushing it. 2 people knowing a thing is great, because if you didn't tell, you know who did, and 1 is the best of all. There's plenty of ways of getting the behavior you want out of people without being so vulgar as to actually tell them things. He's really got no one to blame but himself for both of the leaks. You think company loyalty exists these days? Hah! I'm sure you'd sell Cisco out in a heartbeat if you saw a profit in it, why do you think your employees, many of whom actually know what it's like to struggle, are any different? You'd think a black-ops specialist would know that, but, obviously, nope.

    And the real tricky thing about threats is, you absolutely, positively, must carry them through, or your future threats will mean (less than) nothing. In fact, if you don't already have the proverbial gun to someone's head (preferably without them knowing it's there), it's best not to make the threat at all, although that does take some self-control, which I understand can be a rare commodity in upper-management, and maybe best saved for more important occasions. Although a credible threat can be absolutely terrifying, silence from someone who has a reason to hate you is a lot scarier than hollow chest-thumping. You'd think such an intimidating beast would know that, 20 years after working for the CIA. Time will tell, but I'm guessing that once again the answer will be a big fat nope.

    Of course, I'm no 007, I learned all this playing a silly internet spaceships game and reading fantasy books. I imagine this spook knows what he's doing, and we're all dancing on the puppetmaster's strings.

  • Re:Corporate treason (Score:4, Interesting)

    by mounthood ( 993037 ) on Thursday November 08, 2012 @07:41PM (#41926165)

    From (emp mine) []

    Data loss prevention (DLP) poses a serious issue for companies, as the number of incidents and the cost to businesses continues to increase. Whether it is intentionally malicious or inadvertent, data loss can diminish a company's brand, reduce shareholder value, and damage the company's goodwill and reputation.

Recent investments will yield a slight profit.