Tech Horror Stories: The Unwelcome Guest


It’s long after nightfall on a particularly dark and blustery autumn night. You’re in a deep sleep, made deeper by the lull of the winds whistling outside your—*BZZZZ! BZZZZ!*

A phone call. Who could it be at this hour?

Uh oh, it’s work. This can’t be good.

You pick up your phone and before you’re able to groan a tired hello your boss breaks in, her voice racing. “We’re getting hit with a DDoS attack. It’s bad. Get to the office ASAP to prevent downtime!” You spring to your feet and scramble for your car keys while DDoS attack horror stories flash through your head. Just earlier this year you read about the single largest DDoS attack ever recorded and a separate incident that cost New York Magazine over 500,000 page views on a newly launched cover story. $22,000 dollars, you recall, is the average cost of one minute of downtime caused by an attack of this nature. Spooky.

Driving to the office you discover that the storm outside is worse than you had thought; broken branches litter the street and your car veers side-to-side from the pull of the wind. You begin formulating ideas on how to foil the attack. Maybe this would be a good time to try out Experts Exchange where they’ve got experts on-demand waiting to provide answers to specific tech problems and a database of over 40,000 security issues already resolved. You decide it’s worth a shot.

Upon arriving at work you see your boss pacing back and forth in a panic and your wide-eyed colleagues staring into the blue glow of their monitors. The dismal scene is made more nightmarish by the discovery that you’re still in your underwear—but no time for that. You scramble to your desk and boot up your system (bah! does it usually take this long to start!?).

Palms sweating, you log onto Experts Exchange and immediately post a plea for help. In the blink of an eye a user with impressive (ISC)² certifications who helped a client thwart a similar attack just days before drops a comment detailing his approach. You get to work applying this new knowledge and in no time all of the attacker’s requests are blocked and servers are stable. Disaster prevented, and it sounds like the wind outside has died down too.

When it comes to scary security breaches, sinister cyber attacks or any of your tech issues, we’ve got your back.

As for your clothes, that’s on you. Until then, throw something on for heaven’s sake. You’re a professional.

Read more tech horror stories:

A Distant Cry for Help

It Came From Inside the Office

The Creep

About Morgan Condict

I got my start doing QA in the San Francisco video game industry. Today, when I'm not writing or testing at Experts Exchange I'm likely reading, drawing, drumming, or out exploring San Luis Obispo with my wife and dog.