Vigilance against viruses and weaknesses in your IT system is necessary, but one federal agency went overboard and actually destroyed hardware like mice, keyboards, and printers, mistakenly thinking they could harbor malware. The ill-advised plan cost taxpayers $2.7 million.
In an almost cartoonish response to a relatively minor problem, employees at the obscure Economic Development Administration took a hammer to their computers, keyboards and mice in an effort to destroy all of the agency’s tech-related hardware after incorrectly believing their network had been hacked.
Not only was the reaction unorthodox and unnecessary, it cost $2.7 million in damages — more than half the agency’s annual technology budget, according to a recently released inspector general report.
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