This recently hired pilot fish is trying to improve security at her company, and one effort is pretty simple: installing security cables to lock each laptop to a desk.

"Since my company does not want me to disturb the workers and interrupt their workflow, I stayed late one day to install the newly purchased laptop cable locks," says fish. "Now, mind you, these only lock the laptop to the desk; they do not lock shut the laptop in any way."

But next day in the company break room, a user approaches fish. How am I supposed to get into my laptop? she asks.

Fish assumes it's a password problem. "I told her that I had not made any password changes or other system changes and that she would 'get into' it the same way she always had," fish says. "She then told me it was locked shut.

"I asked what error message she was getting. She said she was not getting any error messages, because she could not open her laptop. Then the light shone down from above, and I asked, 'Have you tried to open your laptop today?' Her answer was 'No, I knew it would not open because of the big lock you have on the side of it!'

"I explained that the lock only locked the laptop to her desk and did not lock it shut, and that she should try to open it as she always has.

"She was then angry with me for making her look stupid in front of everyone in the break area.

"I still don't know what is more disturbing: the fact that she didn't even try to open the laptop, or the fact that she comes in at 7 a.m. and I come in at 8 a.m. but she didn't ask me about the problem until 11:30 a.m."

Submit your own true tales of IT life to sharky@computerworld.com. If Sharky uses it, you'll snag a snazzy Shark Tank shirt!

Have a similar experience? Then add your comments to the daily Shark Tank blog!

Copyright © 2006 IDG Communications, Inc.

Shop Tech Products at Amazon