Software developer outsources his job to China, makes good money goofing off all day

By on January 16, 2013, 3:00 PM

In this economy you'd think there aren't many six-figure jobs that let you wander aimlessly throughout the web all day between cat videos and catching up with social networks. And you'd be right. But one software developer in his 40s was living the dream nonetheless thanks to the magic of outsourcing.

A Verizon report recently detailed one the case of an employee at a U.S. based infrastructure company who was outsourcing his entire job to China for a fifth of his salary. The man in question, referred to as Bob, had gone as far as physically shipping his RSA security token to China so that the third-party contractor could go through the two-factor authentication and log-in under his credentials during the workday.

But eventually the scheme was discovered when Verizon received a request from the unnamed company asking for help in understanding anomalous activity it was witnessing in its VPN logs.

Upon seeing an open and active connection from Shenyang, China, the companies initially suspected some kind of unknown zero-day malware had been able to infiltrate the network. However, further investigation  proved otherwise, Bob had simply outsourced his own job to a Chinese consulting firm.

A look at his browsing history revealed what his typical work day consisted of surfing Reddit for a couple of hours, having lunch, browsing social networks, then emailing his end of day update to management. Evidence even suggested he had the same scam going across multiple companies in the area.

Amusingly, it seems that Bob at least chose his developers carefully. Performance reviews cited his clean, well-written code, and even regarded him as the best developer in the building.




User Comments: 31

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Timonius Timonius said:

Classy...maybe they should outsource his prison time to China?

MilwaukeeMike said:

Uh Scam? No. Deceitful yes, but not a scam. If he opened up a bunch of big security holes by allowing these consulting firms access I could see why he'd be in trouble, but otherwise I'd expect the worst that could happen to him would be losing his 'job'. Verizon was receiving everything they paid for, and high quality work, by the sound of it.

Personally, I'd never outsource my job to China. I'd pick India for sure.

Relic Relic, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

His jig is up!

4 people like this | Guest said:

This sounds like something George Costanza would do.

3 people like this |
Staff
Per Hansson Per Hansson, TS Server Guru, said:

I really don't see the problem here.

So companies can outsource their whole damn firm and it's all ok.

But this guy simply outsourced his job, and had the person doing it performing a terrific job surpassing all his colleagues, and he is the bad guy?

3 people like this | Chazz said:

I really don't see the problem here.

So companies can outsource their whole damn firm and it's all ok.

But this guy simply outsourced his job, and had the person doing it performing a terrific job surpassing all his colleagues, and he is the bad guy?

I completely agree with this. I applaud the guy for thinking outside of the box.

1 person liked this | Vrmithrax Vrmithrax, TechSpot Paladin, said:

I really don't see the problem here.

So companies can outsource their whole damn firm and it's all ok.

But this guy simply outsourced his job, and had the person doing it performing a terrific job surpassing all his colleagues, and he is the bad guy?

Other than sending his RSA security token to someone else and allowing them to log in as him (probably covered by basic fraud and a serious violation of his employment security agreements)... And that he was representing the work as his own, which could potentially cause massive havoc and damages if an issue arose that needed immediate attention, and he would not be able to take care of the situation personally... The concept itself wasn't flawed, so much as the dishonest implementation of it.

Plus, the company was probably just irritated that it could have gotten 5 times the excellent work for that one guy's salary, with much lower benefits overhead. Heh.

1 person liked this | nategatorc nategatorc said:

I haven't had a chance to meet this young man but boy does he have Straight to Upper Management written all over him.

MilwaukeeMike said:

I really don't see the problem here.

So companies can outsource their whole damn firm and it's all ok.

But this guy simply outsourced his job, and had the person doing it performing a terrific job surpassing all his colleagues, and he is the bad guy?

Well, when a company outsources the job, they give the security clearance and do the background check on the company they are hiring. When they hire Bob the Slacker, they do the checks on him. That's why I'd bet he'll get fired. I agree, he wasn't scamming them, but depending on the type of job he had, his employer might be a bit upset he was sharing security credentials.

Guest said:

nategatorc:

"I haven't had a chance to meet this young man but boy does he have Straight to Upper Management written all over him."

Naga...Naga....Not-gonna work here anymore, anyway. *nerd*

Guest said:

Why in the world is Verizon upset with him for doing exactly what their and every member of upper management does to the ground workers every day? (With the exception of sending their security code to China.)

1 person liked this | Guest said:

Great upper level management potential.

1 person liked this | Sarcasm Sarcasm said:

Why in the world is Verizon upset with him for doing exactly what their and every member of upper management does to the ground workers every day? (With the exception of sending their security code to China.)

Yup they are all up in arms about this yet thousands of Manufacturing jobs are outsourced to China every single day.

The man is just doing it on a smaller scale lol

Guest said:

What everyone fails to read is that it wasn't Verizon who hired him but rather a company that hired Verizon to audit the VPN logs whether Verizon was the company's service provider or what not, who knows.

misor misor said:

Nah!!!

if he outsourced his job to me, I'll be glad.

TS-56336 TS-56336 said:

It happens more often here in our country...

VitalyT VitalyT said:

Lots of developers do it, just more carefully, without security compromises like this.

RzmmDX said:

We need more guys like him, we would have so many more job opportunities.

ET3D, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Anyone knows what the Chinese company is? Could come in handy.

Conger88 said:

Whats the penalty for this? lose his job obviously...but does he get fined? prison? personaly I think hes a hero

1 person liked this | avoidz avoidz said:

This sounds like something George Castanza would do.

The Verizon guy was handed the "Pensky file". Outsourcing his own job was pretty clever.

tonylukac said:

It's hard to get rid of a civil servant. My boss in a civil service job did something similar. He'd be in in the morning to unlock his door, and then proceeded to another job. Sometimes he'd come back in the evening, sometimes not. The way they got rid of him was to take away his parking pass, and parking is now $35 near downtown Chicago.

Terrell Terrell said:

There was nothing said about him not knowing how to do his job. I mean he obviously had to interview for the job at some point I would think. So he was being lazy and decided to outsource the work. Obviously, he had better things to do with his time.

Moheban79 Moheban79 said:

I once heard of a guy that was a medical organ courier that out-sourced his job to someone else for a 1/5th of the pay. He got busted when they discovered he wasn't of a darker skinned racial minority!

Guest said:

How is that a scam ? Guy was paid to get some work done and from what I understand he did all that and then some - hardly a scam. Security and possibly NDA violation, sure, but not a scam.

Chemicalist Chemicalist said:

Uh Scam? No. Deceitful yes, but not a scam. If he opened up a bunch of big security holes by allowing these consulting firms access I could see why he'd be in trouble, but otherwise I'd expect the worst that could happen to him would be losing his 'job'. Verizon was receiving everything they paid for, and high quality work, by the sound of it.

Personally, I'd never outsource my job to China. I'd pick India for sure.

You still have to pick carefully wherever you are. There are loads of talented Indian developers, for sure, but there are also a lot who love them some spaghetti code.

LNCPapa LNCPapa said:

Sarcasm fail? or did I read too much into that?

Guest said:

Hi, the biggest problem here will be the fact that he signed confidentiality papers [ Standard for most companies] that said he would not divulge any company information outside the company without consent. he really blew this by sending his Secure login. even if you cannot prove he caused any security breaches [ who knows anyway].

The fact that he was in breach of contract concerning company information will get him into deep trouble should they decide to sue him. Sharing that secure login will be what really gets him. Also if your not aware, he may have also violated Trade laws [ Export] by giving out the security code.

Im not sure how this applies to this event but the RSA login key was encrypted and he transported it out of the country [ code] . and if it was a certain strength that is blocked for export: China of all places. Then he can get into trouble there too.

They can make his life very difficult if they want to be vicious about it.

But otherwise yeah he got one over on them, but he may have to pay for being a Smart A** .

Guest said:

Wow, it took 29 comments to get to the export trade law violation question?

*sighs and shakes her head*

Depending on what technology he "exported", he could face prison time. This may be why there are not more details about the data he was sending. But, what I will do is report back here if there is a settlement agreement (fine and possibly jail time) with Dept of State or Dept of Commerce. Might take a year or so, but I will let you know.

Guest said:

He is in breach of contract I would bet money

gross misconduct for disclosure of material / something or other

possible civil suit against him even criminal?? I.e theft

either way he is gone

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