Thursday, May 29, 2008

False Authority Syndrome

question authorityOne of our members has just forwarded a chain email to me, [and only me] asking for advice. The chain email is about the #90 mobile phone scam whereby it is alleged that when an “engineer” calls you and asks you to key in that number, you should beware because they can then access the SIM card and make calls on your account. It’s a hoax, an urban myth, based on a localised example in the United States back in the early 1990s which was quickly eradicated. It didn’t take long or much effort to find via a google search.

But what is striking is that the email originates from a Crime Prevention Police Officer in Lancashire and his “informant” is the Senior Manager of a company that describes itself on the net as “a leading independent firm of chartered accountants and business advisers”. WTF is their expertise in telecommunications? Zilch, I’d say. They are Accountants, period, they are number crunchers, what would they know about how telephone networks operate? Did they check and verify their source? Did they think to ask a telephone engineer or one of the Mobile operators? Apparently not, so much for "business advice".

Would you employ an electrician to do your plumbing? Would you consult a Gynaecologist for heart or respiratory problems? I thought not.

It’s not what you know, It’s who you ask!

False Authority Syndrome: Go Read. [link updated, 28/10/2008]

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