BYOD - Desktop Edition

At this point I really should not be surprised at the ingenuity that patrons display in finding a way around the various rules and restrictions.  Not only have I worked in a library for several years now, but I play games, and I know exactly how far gamers will go to work rules in their favor if there is any room for ambiguity.   I once got into an argument with a patron who felt that by-passing our time management software by using a virtual computer application on his flash drive was not "circumventing" anything in our computer use policy (unacceptable use includes "violating the automated reservation procedures or using someone else's library card").  I had to threaten to remotely shut down the computer before he would comply in any manner, at which point he left in a huff.

Today I was taken by surprise in a new way concerning our computers.  For some time we have had an empty computer station.  The monitor, keyboard, mouse, and even power cords are all there, but no computer.  One of our older computers died and with all the various other tasks on my desk and lacking a new computer for that location, rebuilding an older machine to fill that location has been a lower priority task.  Actually I have found the station to be quite useful when configuring other new machines.

Either way, this station has been empty for ages.  Sometimes it is used as workspace, for papers, a laptop, or by a kid coloring while its parents use the public computers.

Then I walked by while helping someone and noticed that someone was using a computer there.  Not a laptop, but a desktop.  The tower was big, the type meant for custom gaming rigs, though I have no clue about the hardware it contained, and was all hooked up to the peripherals at that station and to that station's Ethernet connection.

We don't have a policy explicitly stating that you cannot do this.  It never occurred to us that someone would.  But then we don't have a policy explicitly saying (at least I don't think we do... we might by now) "don't leap off the second floor mezzanine."  In this case I felt this was a little too direct connection to our server for me to feel comfortable about, especially on a machine that I have no knowledge of its security.  A desktop top is not what I tend to consider a "BYOD" item.

Fortunately he didn't make too much of a fuss when I approached him.  Now to see that the next thing someone comes up with.

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