"My mouse is opening and closing programs on its own," user at a remote site tells help desk. IT tests the PC across the network and, sure enough, the pointer moves, though user swears she's not touching the mouse. Much troubleshooting later, IT hops a plane to the site. "I find that the two users in this office replaced their company-provided keyboards and mice with unapproved cordless setups," he sighs. "They were both set to the default frequency. A quick turn of the frequency dial cleared up the problem."


Vodafone Australia chief executive Grahame Maher doesn't mind engaging in a bit of hyperbole at times. Last week he was telling media how the company was preparing for a mobile phone war over Christmas. He was pretty serious too, warning that there will be "blood on the streets". His comments echo those from Telstra chief executive Ziggy Switkowski who was taking a similar line but was a tad less graphic. He described the Christmas market as "aggressive" and "white hot".


It was a week when spammers and scammers had to cop it sweet. The Australian mastermind behind a global Internet fraud, more commonly known as the Nigerian or West African scam, was last week sentenced to more than four years jail.

After fleecing $5 million from victims, Nick Marinellis pleaded guilty in the NSW District Court to 10 counts of fraud and one count of perverting the course of justice. Marinellis will be eligible for release in 2008.

Meanwhile in the US, a brother and sister duo were sentenced to nine years in prison for sending spam. They faced three felony charges of sending thousands of junk e-mails through servers located in Virginia. They were the nation's first spam convictions and were also hit with a $US7,500 fine. The pair was rated the world's eighth-most prolific spammers by the Register of Known Spam Operations.

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