Tuesday, April 20, 2010

On discretion

I'm just a geek in the civilian world. I've never been in the military and it's pretty safe to say it won't happen in this lifetime. I'm only in the milblog world as an observer and enabler. Sometimes I pipe up with geek rants but mostly I just listen and try to learn.

Take from the following what you will:

Today I went into work knowing that all my big projects got pushed back a couple of days by hackers. Unwelcome and unexpected open FTP ports, my partner in crime and I had a bunch of computers to format and rebuild.

I had some choices. I could run around and tell everyone what the story was on why some users didn't have computers at their desks when they showed up this morning. I'd be talking to people who don't know jack about network security and wouldn't understand much of what I said. They would probably just think less of the users who had vacant spaces under their desks, but everyone would hear a story about why we were doing what we were doing, even if they didn't understand it 100%. Might even get a little pity out of the deal...

...or I could just mumble "viruses" as we got back to dealing with the problem at hand. That they would get. After a few years of what I've taught them, they should understand it isn't a scarlet letter. They would move on as would I. The computers would be rebuilt, the users wouldn't be made out to be hapless victims (or worse yet, asking for it), and a lot less time would be wasted than if I'd gone the other route.

There are times in life where you shouldn't need to spill every detail of the back story to make your own actions seem justified. Discretion really is the better part of valor. All I needed today was to get to work trying to fix a problem. Making it personal wouldn't have helped a damn thing.

~~Code Monkey

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