Finding The Hidden InfoSec Story

Alternative Christmas Message

We’re delighted to present an Alternative Christmas Message created courtesy of Project Contributor Jenny Radcliffe. she looks at what should be a time of giving through an InfoSec lens, advising us to make sure we perhaps don’t give too much away this year…

A video of Jenny performing The Analogies Project ‘Alternative Christmas Message’ can be found here.


Twas the night before Christmas and all through the house,
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse,
Except for the waiting Social Engineer,
Looking to breach you and take all your gear.

Christmas is the perfect time, don’t you see
To sneak under the radar, like under the tree
People are careless and more than before
Their guard is right down and they’ll open the door

I’m talking about the psychological hacks,
That we are all subject to unless we cover our backs
They depend on people, willing to help and chatter
To explain, to not question, to think it doesn’t matter

I’ll skip a few rules and open some gates,
Give you a new password, because you said you can’t wait
It doesn’t concern me I’ve not met you before
You seem very nice and I’m leaving at four

There’s a party to go to in our local bar
And we’re all going there to have a few jars
And no one will notice a stranger listening in
Taking mental notes and topping up our gin

And I love those e-cards that are cheerful and happy
So I don’t check addresses or links that seem snappy
I love Christmas you see it makes work seem fun
And I am out of work mode anyway see I am done

So behind the cheer and the fun and the laughter
Is a problem you may only find much after
Because people always talk and they always chat
But at Christmas even more so and that can be that

It’s partly because they don’t suspect Santa
Or anyone else with a good line in banter
It’s also because you don’t see an elf
Screwing you over with a camera on the shelf

Who the hell puts a microphone on a Christmas tree
Or delivers mince pies, only to see
How far they can travel unescorted inside
And grab all the data you’re trying to hide

The holiday season can be so much fun
But let your guard down and you’ll easily be done
I don’t want to spoil the festive cheer
But mark my words and lend me your ear

Talk to your staff, explain what I meant
Tell them your fears and allow them to vent
They are going to be disappointed in you
Calling you Scrooge and grumpy and blue

But you have to persist and put them on their guard
Tell them Christmas is epic but you have to stay sharp
Remember the bad guys love Christmas too
And will think of new ways to get in and past you

Talk to them about loose lips in bars
And fake Christmas cards,
And gifts from afar
And all of the ways we can all be conned
Especially at Christmas when we all bond

It’s not easy to get their attention I know
Their mind is on presents and family and snow
But just link it all to the one sad fact
That their info is fodder for the bad guys out back

Who will use their details and their family’s too,
To put together a plot to get into you
And I guess all I’m saying is while you celebrate
Never forget the bad guys at the gate

From the disgruntled employee who left a month ago
To the criminals and terrorists with a grudge that we know
To the industry spies and the rest with bad intent
Never forget your human element

But Christmas is, after all, the time of good cheer
Of parties, and e-cards and plenty of beer
I don’t want to spoil it, especially for you
Our security professionals and all of your crew

Who work through the year to keep people safe
And handle the hacks, the breaches and shakes
So this is for you have a great festive season
You do a great job and this is the reason

Keep up the good work, keep fighting, stay ahead
And maybe I’ll move on to next door instead…
Merry Christmas, and Have a Happy New Year
See you soon, hugs and kisses from your Social Engineer….


Written by Jenny Radcliffe

This poem is copyright The Analogies Project Ltd and available for use under a Creative Commons License.

Author: Bruce Hallas

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