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GadgetsRme
RIP lilhurricane
Premium
join:2002-01-30
Canon City, CO
reply to Archivis

Re: Computer technician finding illegal activity

No, but it gives pause to the person turning the computer in for work. I have had 2 taken back. One came back the other didn't.
--
Gadgets



GadgetsRme
RIP lilhurricane
Premium
join:2002-01-30
Canon City, CO
reply to Archivis

said by Archivis:

Anyone can get sued. A disclaimer doesn't prevent that.

Also the covering your ass reference was in regard to checking what you're bringing into your possession, not the disclaimer protecting you. The disclaimer is to make people think.
--
Gadgets


norwegian
Premium
join:2005-02-15
Outback
reply to GadgetsRme

I think as long as you mention the concerns over certain items and the reasons behind it, including the legal implications of some if necessary, then you're clear of the issue with you being held responsible. At least I hope it would be held as true.

If it comes back to bite them because they carry on and you are questioned, then you hold no ties to the business relationship or friendship at the extreme, your opinion was made clear straight away, and their decision from that point is theirs only. Responsibility should never fall on party 2, because of party 1's own actions at this point, which is why I have trouble with the grey surrounding "after the fact" when it straying into said argument. If you were unaware of files because you didn't go looking because it was a plain graphics card exchange, then you are clear. If you see something like animal pron and it disgusts you; then as you have made it clear before proceeding, then you should be still covered. From that point on if it is there it isn't your problem.

But severity and the return trip to see the same concerns over tech work would be troubling in both your business and personal ethics. I would hope if someone was of that nature, they wouldn't come back to you for work. However it paints a picture of me "hiding my head under the carpet", which does allow room for concern over my character.

A point made by GadgetsRme See Profile helps avoid the confrontation and would be a wise business option for your needs.

"That being said is there anything on the computer that you would not want me to see?". If the answer is yes I would tell them to bring it back when they had removed said items.

But if it is broken and said articles can not be removed, then you have a dilemma of how you as a tech have to move forward, because they can be shady and you will end up exposed to content you might otherwise as a tech avoid or not believe in.
--
The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing - Edmund Burke



GadgetsRme
RIP lilhurricane
Premium
join:2002-01-30
Canon City, CO

said by norwegian:

But if it is broken and said articles can not be removed, then you have a dilemma of how you as a tech have to move forward, because they can be shady and you will end up exposed to content you might otherwise as a tech avoid or not believe in.

I've worked with plenty of disgusting stuff that I'd rather have not. My concern is the illegal items that can get you in trouble if for some reason you get caught with them in your possession. You can say that shouldn't be a problem, I will not take that chance. I check.
--
Gadgets


Archivis
Your Daddy
Premium
join:2001-11-26
Earth
kudos:19
reply to GadgetsRme

said by GadgetsRme:

Also the covering your ass reference was in regard to checking what you're bringing into your possession, not the disclaimer protecting you. The disclaimer is to make people think.

I just don't tell people what I'm doing. They never know something is "in my possession". It just gets fixed or I go back to the customer with a "Hey, here's a game-stopper issue."

10 years, never been sued.
--
A government big enough to give you everything you want, is strong enough to take everything you have. -MLK


wxboss
This is like Deja vu all over again.
Premium
join:2005-01-30
Fort Lauderdale, FL
reply to The Snowman

Agreed. I would even venture to say that most people have more personal information on their computers than they do in their own wallets, and who would willingly hand over their wallet?

This is not a day and age to be too trusting or too ignorant which may arguably be the same thing.
--
"I do not believe in a fate that falls on men however they act; but I do believe in a fate that falls on them unless they act." --- G. K. Chesterton


ctggzg
Premium
join:2005-02-11
USA
kudos:2
reply to NormanS

said by NormanS:

As for how to find files easily ...

Your Start Menu is a mess.




NormanS
I gave her time to steal my mind away
Premium,MVM
join:2001-02-14
San Jose, CA
kudos:11
Reviews:
·SONIC.NET
·Pacific Bell - SBC

said by ctggzg:

said by NormanS:

As for how to find files easily ...

Your Start Menu is a mess.

It is not.
--
Norman
~Oh Lord, why have you come
~To Konnyu, with the Lion and the Drum

mfmruizv

join:2001-09-01
USA
reply to jaa

I dont drop off my computer for repair but as far as hd rmas or sells I at least do a short dod on them to at least stop the less inclined people. If i did drop it off I would not trust a person for this regardless of how honest or reputable lets say a certain company is all it takes is one person there and there can be a lot of curiosity when dealing with other peoples stuff. I know many people that are computer illiterate and its amazing how much information they leave right at a couple clicks reach, private photos and bank statements in my docs and recent docs, browsing history... The funny thing is they dont even know how to get back to those folders at times so they might feel a little bit more confident giving it to the person to check it out, thinking theyre in the clear.
When i do fix others pcs I will let them know I will only be going into what I need to do to fix the problem, but if theres anything they see private or important and measures such as a wipe exist some basic info they can give me to find it will help without me viewing them.

Expand your moderator at work


psafux
Premium,VIP
join:2005-11-10
kudos:2
reply to jaa

Re: Computer technician finding illegal activity


said by jaa:

When you drop off a computer for repair, do you have an expectation of privacy?

Definitely not

said by jaa:

What if you had naked pictures of you or your spouse, or you were a professional photographer and had images of others, or your tax return, or emails...

Happens all the time.

The repair professional has an ethical duty to not explore the system any more than is needed to diagnose & repair the issue.

I worked at a repair shop a few years ago, we had a tech who loved to look through client pictures & documents. I frequently told him not to and told him it would bite him in the ass someday. One day he ran across some kiddy porn on a customers system. The client was a very close friend of the owner of the repair shop. Needlessly said, it bit him in the ass.


Bishop

@rr.com
reply to KodiacZiller

Well, I would just like to say that before you all go off spouting at the mouth, It would be nice if people know the facts. Not everything is what it seems or really, what you imagine in your mind.

I was a technician for a small computer store. It was my last day there as I had just got a new job at the local university. A person had brought there computer in for repair. Upon diagnosing the computer, it was determined that he was having hard drive (hd) failure. Called the customer and told him, he authorized to have new hd installed and to transfer stuff from old hd.

As I was trying to back up his data from his hd, it stopped and said that there was a lock on the file and that I would have to unlock file to proceed. I went to just change the attributes but that was not the case with the files. The only way to unlock the file was to open the file so I had to launch each and every file to unlock it.

Well, when I started, low and behold there was some disgusting CP on the hd. I was not even thinking of it as a crime, I was just disgusted by the content. After doing about a dozen files, all CP, I went and complained to the boss that I cant do it anymore and that I was disgusted with the photos on the computer. I told him what they were and that was when he informed me that I was to call the police. I told him that I didn't even want to get involved and that it was my last day anyways but that is when he said its the law.

Called the police, they came and took a report on how I found what I found and the rest is history.

As a footnote, the person whose computer it was, was a student at the university that I had just got hired at.

I did not snoop thru that customers computer and am I probably more concerned about a person's privacy than any of you. I felt offended by the comments even though my case happened about 10-11 years ago.

So I just want to say this in closing, you should not judge a case unless you know all the facts and since none of you really know the facts, well...



Blackbird
Built for Speed
Premium
join:2005-01-14
Fort Wayne, IN
kudos:3
Reviews:
·Frontier Communi..

said by Bishop :

... As I was trying to back up his data from his hd, it stopped and said that there was a lock on the file and that I would have to unlock file to proceed. I went to just change the attributes but that was not the case with the files. The only way to unlock the file was to open the file so I had to launch each and every file to unlock it. ...

I'm confused. How do you "lock" a file (without just changing its external read/write/hidden/etc attributes) but yet require that it simply be opened in order to "unlock" it... and what possible purpose would such a "lock" serve?
--
"Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God!" -- P.Henry, 1775


KodiacZiller
Premium
join:2008-09-04
73368
kudos:2
reply to Bishop

said by Bishop :

Well, I would just like to say that before you all go off spouting at the mouth, It would be nice if people know the facts. Not everything is what it seems or really, what you imagine in your mind.

I don't know why you directed this at me. I merely told a story. I didn't say it is right or wrong to call the Police (it is probably legally required to call them). I only said not to expect privacy when having a computer repaired.
--
Getting people to stop using windows is more or less the same as trying to get people to stop smoking tobacco products. They dont want to change; they are happy with slowly dying inside. -- munky99999


EGeezer
zichrona livracha
Premium
join:2002-08-04
Midwest
kudos:8
Reviews:
·Callcentric
reply to jaa

If I were a criminal and had evidence of a crime on my PC, I'd deserve to go to jail if I turned the PC over to anyone else besides my lawyer.

As for reporting, federal law is clear about requiring ISPs, cloud service providers etc to report CP.

Public law 18 USCS §§ 2251 et seq. provides further information. I believe that under that section, a repair tech who discovered CP on a system and deliberately chose to let the customer pick it up could be prosecuted for receiving and/or distribution under the law.



lordpuffer
RIP lil
Premium
join:2004-09-19
Rio Rancho, NM
kudos:1
Reviews:
·CableOne

1 recommendation

reply to jaa

Haven't researched any case law on it, however, IMO, if you drop off your computer for repair, you give up any expectation of privacy.

And, if you download CP, you deserve whatever happens. CP is sick, period.
--
Obama in 2012 - There's No Tea Left In The Bag.



jaa
Premium
join:2000-06-13
kudos:2
Reviews:
·Optimum Online
·Vonage
reply to jaa

My opinion is a technician is ethically bound to treat all information on the computer confidentially. I have had people have me sign a HIPAA agreement, which is the right thing for them to do.

I am not a lawyer, but it seems computer technicians are under no obligation to report. »beaconnews.suntimes.com/news/119···est.html

I don't know what I would do if I found child porn, fraud, or other indicator of illegal activity on a computer.
--
NOTHING justifies terrorism. We don't negotiate with terrorists. Those that support terrorists are terrorists.



NormanS
I gave her time to steal my mind away
Premium,MVM
join:2001-02-14
San Jose, CA
kudos:11
Reviews:
·SONIC.NET
·Pacific Bell - SBC

said by jaa:

I don't know what I would do if I found child porn, fraud, or other indicator of illegal activity on a computer.

What would you do if you came across files relating a plot to bomb an abortion clinic, or even a police station?
--
Norman
~Oh Lord, why have you come
~To Konnyu, with the Lion and the Drum


Archivis
Your Daddy
Premium
join:2001-11-26
Earth
kudos:19

You act on it. If you don't, you're retarded. It's not your fault that people are doing illegal activity. We're not talking about software piracy, we're talking about violence.

You discretely put yourself into a safe place, be sure you know what you're looking at and report it. Child porn the same.
--
A government big enough to give you everything you want, is strong enough to take everything you have. -MLK



JALevinworth

@embarqhsd.net
reply to jaa

said by jaa:

I am not a lawyer, but it seems computer technicians are under no obligation to report. »beaconnews.suntimes.com/news/119···est.html

That's in IL Every state has different laws.

Most states require that you report it if you find it. (some states have protections additionally if you don't find it and return it). On the federal level, if you are a telcom or service provider, and find it, you must report it to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.

said by jaa:

I don't know what I would do if I found child porn, fraud, or other indicator of illegal activity on a computer.

First, check the law in your state.

Food for thought:
No law was broken by Joe Paterno either and thus why he wasn't charged. In fact, he followed the law to the letter for it's reporting requirements.
-Jim


NormanS
I gave her time to steal my mind away
Premium,MVM
join:2001-02-14
San Jose, CA
kudos:11
Reviews:
·SONIC.NET
·Pacific Bell - SBC
reply to jaa

said by jaa:

I am not a lawyer, but it seems computer technicians are under no obligation to report.

Among the list of "mandated reporters" in the State of California":

Commercial film and photographic print processor

»mandatedreporterca.com/who/who.htm

Although computer technicians apparently aren't mandated, currently, I am guessing they would have grounds for action if they were terminated for reporting, based on this listing.
--
Norman
~Oh Lord, why have you come
~To Konnyu, with the Lion and the Drum


JALevinworth

@embarqhsd.net
reply to JALevinworth

Clarification:

said by JALevinworth :

..In fact, he followed the law to the letter for it's the commonwealth of PA's reporting requirements.
-Jim



JALevinworth

@embarqhsd.net
reply to NormanS

FYI: "Mandated reporters" is for child abuse - CP is commonly coded separately. (Not that CP isn't child abuse - child sexual exploitation certainly IS... but the laws and penalties might differ for each in different states, so being not on the mandated reporters list does not mean you don't have to report found CP).

2012-09-17 18:39:38



NormanS
I gave her time to steal my mind away
Premium,MVM
join:2001-02-14
San Jose, CA
kudos:11

"Commercial film and photographic print processors" are much more likely to encounter child pornography than simple child abuse.
--
Norman
~Oh Lord, why have you come
~To Konnyu, with the Lion and the Drum



JALevinworth

@embarqhsd.net

said by NormanS:

"Commercial film and photographic print processors" are much more likely to encounter child pornography than simple child abuse.

Norm, I agree, but different states have different laws and while some may have rolled their CP laws into their child abuse laws (or sexting or human trafficking), others have additional CP statutes.

Here's the federal statutes which you'll see child abuse and CP are separated into different statutes:
»codes.lp.findlaw.com/uscode/42/132/IV

It's very wise to be sure in your state what the statutes are.

2012-09-17 21:20:28