Man Outsources Job to China, Gets Paid to Watch Cat Videos

by at . Comments

You hear a lot about corporations outsourcing jobs to China, but never about a person outsourcing responsibilities of their job overseas ... until now.


A Verizon investigation recently found that an employee of a "critical infrastructure" company started outsourcing his work to China on a daily basis.

He did this right under his employer's nose, paid the Chinese workers less than one fifth of his six-figure salary, and spent most of his day goofing off.

How is that possible, you ask?

The employee, known only as "Bob" in the report, was allowed to work remotely on certain days; his company set up a VPN concentrator to facilitate that.

The company implemented two-factor authentication for the connection to the VPN, with the second factor being a physical, rotating token RSA key fob.

All Bob had to do was send the key over to China via FedEx.

The company eventually noticed some of the strange activity in its VPN logs, so it asked Verizon for some help understanding what was going on.

The logs showed Bob logged in - from Shenyang, China.

He was sitting right there at his desk at the time.

The company initially thought there was some kind of malware infecting his machine, but Verizon found that was not the case, and zeroed in on Bob himself.

A look at his computer turned up hundreds of PDF invoices from a third-party contractor in China, and his browser history revealed his typical day:

  • 9:00 a.m.: Arrive and surf Reddit for a few hours. Watch cat videos.
  • 11:30 a.m.: Take lunch.
  • 1:00 p.m.: Ebay time.
  • 2:00 p.m.: Facebook updates – LinkedIn.
  • 4:30 p.m.: End of day update e-mail to management.
  • 5:00 p.m.: Go home.

So while workers in China were doing Bob's job, he was sitting back, relaxing, watching cat videos, and earning "several hundred thousand dollars" a year.

Living the dream.