Trick or Treat - 25 of the most ridiculous questions asked of IT security

News by Roi Perez

"Do you have any insect repellent? I've been told my computer has a bug."

With Halloween here, Imperva thought they'd offer up a “treat” designed to bring cyber-security professionals a laugh or two. We have all heard the phrase, “you're only as secure as the weakest link,” and “sometimes the teams we support ask cringe-worthy questions that really make us wonder,” said Imperva.  

The Imperva team decided to ask attendees at the 2016 Black Hat cyber-security conference to share the most ridiculous question they'd been asked during their IT security career.

The team compiled a list of the top 25 answers. They are as follows:

  1. “Can you get hacked if you hide your computer?”

  2. “Should I phone HR? I need to send some money somewhere to get my files back from someone.”

  3. “Are there hackers at Black Hat?”

  4. “Why does hacking only happen in America?”

  • “Is hacking a recent occurrence? My parents didn't get hacked.”

  • “What is the hacking worst case scenario? Losing money, stealing information or end of the world?”

  • “How long would it take to hack McDonald's?”

  • “I keep pressing the help key on my keyboard but no one is coming. What's taking so long?”

  • “Is this a cup holder - pointing to CD-ROM holder?”

  • “Do you also provide security services like bodyguards?”

  • “Do you have any insect repellent; I've been told my computer has a bug?”

  • “Can you please tell me who is going to hack me?”

  • “If I unplug my computer does it mean I can't get hacked?”

  • “Is malware good or bad? I have some on my computer.”

  • “Can you make money from hacking?”

  • “I have nothing to lose, why are hackers coming after me?”

  • “Is anything secure anymore?”

  • “I know I can't get hacked; I use antivirus software.”

  • “Are there pills for a computer virus?”

  • “Can you only get hacked once?”

  • “Can hackers steal all my money, even if I keep it in a piggybank?”

  • “I understand hackers can attack my computer, but I keep everything private on my phone. I know hackers can't access that.”

  • “How can I hack Facebook?”

  • “Is hacking preventable?”

  • “Would I always know if I have been hacked?”


  • “Cyber-security is undoubtedly a very complex subject. However, some of these questions are slightly alarming. If an employee doesn't know what a CD-ROM drive is, can we trust they won't fall prey to an email phishing scam? Humans, unlike software, are impossible to patch. Hence, user education, while helpful at times is highly overrated. Technologies that provide a solid defence line for security professionals when humans fail are paramount to keeping your data safe,” said Amichai Shulman, CTO of Imperva.
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