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CommodityQuant
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Posts: 215
Joined: July 5th, 2007, 6:16 am

Asked to login at desk of colleague

April 16th, 2017, 6:28 pm

I'm a new starter in a quant dev role.  During this period, before my computer is set up, I am being asked to occupy the workstation
of a senior colleague for large parts of the day, using his login credentials, while he works elsewhere.
I don't like this arrangement at all.  For example, by force of habit, I'm used to having my own workspace.  It seems very likely that,
while deep in concentration, my reflexes might kick in and I might instinctively open an email that appears while I'm working and thus
end up reading someone else's confidential email.  I don't want this to happen.
I also don't agree that this procedure is essential to the business. 

Is this arrangement normal?  I've never heard of it before.  Any advice?  Thanks.

CommodityQuant
 
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snufkin
Posts: 64
Joined: January 25th, 2017, 9:05 am
Location: Cambridge

Re: Asked to login at desk of colleague

April 16th, 2017, 10:40 pm

It's not normal, and I'm surprised to hear that IT department is anywhere near being that bad in what essentially is a heavily technological business.

As for the advice, talk to your manager, raise this problem, make notes. I'm not convinced it's a dangerous situation but it's definitely weird. 
 
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Hansi
Posts: 3300
Joined: January 25th, 2010, 11:47 am

Re: Asked to login at desk of colleague

April 17th, 2017, 9:45 am

I've heard of and even seen this done in places with bad IT. Provisioning credentials and permissions for new people takes so long that people have them log in as other people. This is however almost always against the companies IT policies and in the case of banks against regulation.

Discuss it with your manager. It's most likely his fault for not requesting the correct access for you ahead of you joining.
 
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snufkin
Posts: 64
Joined: January 25th, 2017, 9:05 am
Location: Cambridge

Re: Asked to login at desk of colleague

April 18th, 2017, 7:26 am

Discuss it with your manager. It's most likely his fault for not requesting the correct access for you ahead of you joining.
I have seen exactly zero places where "correct access" would be requested ahead of time. In two banks I worked for, as well as a few startups and whatnot, the first days (in startups) or weeks (in banks) are normally spent chasing the bloody permissions. YMMV.
 
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Hansi
Posts: 3300
Joined: January 25th, 2010, 11:47 am

Re: Asked to login at desk of colleague

April 18th, 2017, 8:14 am

Discuss it with your manager. It's most likely his fault for not requesting the correct access for you ahead of you joining.
I have seen exactly zero places where "correct access" would be requested ahead of time. In two banks I worked for, as well as a few startups and whatnot, the first days (in startups) or weeks (in banks) are normally spent chasing the bloody permissions. YMMV.
Yes, seen or heard the same everywhere. It is however part of the desk procedures at my current place after I made it a rule and it's in the IT policies.
 
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DominicConnor
Posts: 11684
Joined: July 14th, 2002, 3:00 am

Re: Asked to login at desk of colleague

May 18th, 2017, 3:03 pm

I would counsel you to read my article about the downfall of Jerome Kerviel especially the bits about sharing passwords and being left out to dry if it goes completely tits up.

My article was 9 years ago and from the 17.2 million hits it got, some people claimed my analysis was wrong and this stuff doesn't happen any more.. They said this in 2008.

One thing that would send compliance in fits is that they have left a live trader workstation.
This implies that it wasn't backed up (in case the trader was bad and you need evidence) and then deleted with extreme prejudice.

Most traders are reasonably IT literate, some have written serious texts on programming, he could have left nasties behind, maybe even remote login. Probably not, but the hole is deep if it exists.

Tha'ts basic1980s security, I'm hopeful it will become standard before the end of this century ;(

So what can you do ?
Make a fuss and you risk your hard fought for entry level job.

You need Connor's zeroth law of fuckups.
Make sure your arse is covered. Drop a gentle email to your boss, not in any way confrontational, just gently asking when you will get your own account. Print it out Yes, really.

I'd attempt to speed up the process by finding some good and pressing reason for your management to defuck this situation. Maybe there is a program you need to run that requires the IT guys to reconfigure your system, maybe it keeps crashing, maybe you accidentally cover up the heat vent and the PC dies.
I hear what you say about the email. I'd be tempted to simply delete Outlook from your system., In  a properly configured workstation you can't do that, but given their competence so far, I'd bet you could.

I believe I have a reputation for discretion, so if you want an offline chat an email to my name at gmail will contact me.
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