People Ask the Craziest Things

On a side note, I often answer questions posted at Aardvark on a variety of technology-related question. They pop up in my Gtalk client and are usually easy to answer quickly, most often being quite basic. Of course, I enjoy answering the webOS- and Palm-related questions the most.

Sometimes, though, the oddest questions are asked, which I just don’t know how to answer. Aardvark has a handy “pass” option for just these circumstances. I was presented yesterday with a question that I was very tempted to answer, but in the end decided to pass along to someone else:

My employee has a laptop with a built-in microphone. How can I remotely listen to what goes on in his office while I’m away? I have administrative access to his computer.

The easiest and most obvious answer seems to be: if you feel the need to listen in on an employee while you’re away, then you’ve hired the wrong people. Any thoughts on how you would have answered?


  1. Panagiotis says:

    My first question to myself is is this person telling the truth. If he is really an employer, there are plenty of legitimate station monitoring products he can easily get. Just talk to his sales rep at whatever distributor he uses. That would probably be my response to him.

    if he’s not an employer and just wants to spy on someone (which is what this sounds like), don’t encourage him. I’d just stick with the call rep line – he’d be more familiar with your systems & give you an appropriate solution.

    Sorry if I sound paranoid. I’ve been in the security field for years and it’s been my experience that ambiguos requests like this are often nothing more than fishing for info to be used maliciously.

  2. After to typed “pass” you should have typed “see” so that we could know what kind of answers the asker got. :D


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