What, if anything, did this person do to my computer yesterday?
June 16, 2006 6:59 AM   Subscribe

What is the purpose of Altiris Connection Monitor Log or Altiris Carbon Copy?

This morning when I tried logging onto my work computer, I realized that someone else had logged in since I last used it (their username was still in the "login name" box). I wasn't in the office all day yesterday, and so I thought it was weird that she would be using my computer without me being present. Being a conspiracy theorist, I decided to do a search for what files or folders were modified yesterday. I found that the person who had logged onto my computer had accessed Altiris Carbon Copy and that the Connection Monitor Log had been modified too. I googled the product, but I still don't really understand what it does, and wikipedia was no help either. I know that I have no right to privacy with my work computer, especially since I work for the federal government, but I'm feeling a little violated. Soooo, what's going on? Is this person now able to see everything I'm doing online? Or is it something much more innocuous?
posted by lagreen to Technology (8 answers total)
Remote management software. They might be able to see everything you're doing, I suppose. But they can see everything you do on the net anyway via a packet sniffer if they wanted to. The purpose is to allow IT people to install software remotely or remotely diagnose issues you're having. Or delete your pr0n.
posted by GuyZero at 7:14 AM on June 16, 2006

As you probably gathered from their website:

"Carbon Copy Solution provides organizations with an integrated remote control solution that delivers powerful Web-based management features—at the same cost as traditional remote control utilities."

It looks like it is mainly used for support of desktops in large organizations - it may not be used to "Spy" on you but to help troubleshoot any problems you are having. The person who logged on, do they work in IT? Maybe they are installing this software across your office.

Anyway it would be best to ask your Boss or HR if it is a concern of yours.
posted by aurigus at 7:29 AM on June 16, 2006

Response by poster: Thanks for your help. The weird part was that the woman does not work for IT; she's the admin. assistant for my boss's boss. Hmmm... Anyway, she's not in the office today, so I can't ask her directly.
posted by lagreen at 8:10 AM on June 16, 2006

Altiris is an extremely powerful piece of software. In addition to everything listed above, it improves upon Windows Active Directory in its ability to execute mass updates and software changes. Many large universities use it to help with software license management and to determine what areas deserve updates, upgrades, etc first.

I, for one, welcome our new Altiris overlords.
posted by vkxmai at 8:29 AM on June 16, 2006

Is this person now able to see everything I'm doing online?

At work, assume this anyhow.
posted by mendel at 8:29 AM on June 16, 2006

It's strange that another person had to login to your workstation. We deploy the Altiris client software remotely. Also, it's typically poor practice to leave the last user who logged into the workstation in the login box. There are policies that can be set to avoid that from happening.

In any event, I would suspect that the admin. assistant logging in did not coincide with the Altiris installation. Sounds like a random coincidence.
posted by purephase at 9:25 AM on June 16, 2006

Oh, and Altiris is not really used to monitor your activity, it more for remotely managing the workstation (as others have mentioned). It significantly decreases the amount of time spent moving from workstation to workstation (physically) to install and update software, meter software use against licensing, and so much more.

mendel is correct though. Even if Altiris is not being used to monitor your activity, it is 99% likely that something else is anyway.
posted by purephase at 9:27 AM on June 16, 2006

I suspect they just needed either a file off of it or a spare computer (did they have a guest?), and the programs mentioned simply ran under that login since that was the logged in user. You'd probably see the same results after your next login for your username.
posted by RikiTikiTavi at 11:13 PM on June 17, 2006

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