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AZ IT Administrator Steals Time, Resources for SETI

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posted on Dec, 3 2009 @ 10:42 PM

A computer administrator with the Higley Unified School District in Gilbert, Arizona has resigned during an investigation into suspicious activity.

He's accused of wasting district resources, totaling more than a million dollars to search for UFOs.

The IT administrator is accused of installing a program on every one of the district's 5,000 computers.

The school district was unknowingly the largest contributor to the "SETI" program, the Search for Extra Terrestrial Intelligence.


I read a great deal more on this site than post to it; however, I found this little news blurb to be extremely fascinating and felt it might be of interest to other members. I have not seen it yet mentioned here and a search turned up nothing.

It seems that SETI's largest contributor has been a school administrator using resources neither belonging to him nor approved for such use by the actual owners.

The short, minute-long, video accompanying this story indicates this action was ongoing over a 9-year period and claims time, equipment, and resource loss of approximately 1.6 million dollars.

I have no direct knowledge of the SETI Home Program, and suppose it is possible that it might be run in a completely hidden, background mode, but do have a bit of trouble seeing it operate for 9 years without anyone's knowledge. An IT administrator might have some advantage with that, but surely 5000 computers requires some assistants somewhere.

Still, it is difficult to feel any sympathy for the school district's 'loss.' While I may have become disgustingly jaded, I find the story as humorous as I find it fascinating.

Without going into politics, it is my opinion that an effort such as that purported by SETI is an admirable one and wonder how much, if any, dent this will make in search resources.

posted on Dec, 3 2009 @ 11:49 PM
too bad he did seti instead of folding at home (proteins)

posted on Sep, 22 2010 @ 12:09 AM
when i seen this i had to wonder if it was sompthing we did back in school. way back in the day i was in highschool. we use to unlock the computers and put seti on them. i think the administrator new what was going on and continued to let it happen, however i dont under stand why if they were supose to be really secure. if i remember the password use to be lock+down
so not secure

posted on Dec, 9 2011 @ 09:55 AM
I have machines that have been running the same client for years without messing with them. I used the SETI client to burn in machines in the past and sometimes left the client installed. Some of those clients are still crunching numbers.

posted on Dec, 18 2011 @ 02:17 AM
The loss is purely virtual. We could sue the state for letting the computers unused cycles go to waist when we could sell them.

Honestly. What an idiotic attitude. At least the background, un noticed cycles were used for something. The problem isnt even their action... after this is all done they wont remember that they have 5000 computers to do some "background task".

I give that IT ADMIN a ^5!


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