Monday, October 7, 2013

You want my what?

The scene opens with our Mild-Mannered Enterprise Architect (MMEA) using an online store to rent some photography equipment. It seems our MMEA fancies himself as an unpaid professional photographer and has been pressed into a photo shoot for a good friend. He needs a special, very expensive, camera lens that is available to rent from a company with whom he has done business in the past.

The MMEA has selected the lens he needs from the online store and indicated that he wants to rent it. Rather than being directed to the “Check out” page the MMEA finds himself being asked to call the store to complete this transaction.

The MMEA makes the call, but is wondering why the store isn’t calling him...

Camera Store Agent (CSA): This is Cameras R Us where we put our customers first, how can I help you?
MMEA: Yes, I’m trying to rent a lens off your web site, and it says I have to call.

CSA: Oh, yes, that happens when you are trying to rent one of our expensive lenses. Which one did you need?
MMEA: I need your part number VEL-1094.

CSA: That is a very expensive lens.
MMEA: Yes I think we have established that, that’s why I’m talking to you, you know, to rent one for the weekend.

CSA: No problem, we just need your credit card and a few additional pieces of information.
MMEA: Oh, like what?

CSA: We need a photocopy of your driver’s license, your social security number, and a utility bill.
MMEA: {chuckling} That’s funny. No seriously, what do you need?

CSA: A photocopy of your driver’s license, your social security number, and a utility bill.
MMEA: Why would you possibly need a utility bill? If I fail to return the lens, are you going to shut off my gas?

CSA: It helps to confirm your address. We ask for these things to protect you. We put our customers first.
MMEA: To protect me?

CSA: Yes, someone could have stolen your credit card, but it is unlikely that they also have your driver’s license, social security number, and a utility bill.
MMEA: What’s unlikely is that anybody gives you this stuff.

CSA: Actually, on any given day we have about a dozen rentals out like this.
MMEA: So just to be clear, on any given day you collect a dozen drivers licenses, social security numbers, and utility bills?

CSA: Yeah, for your protection. We put our customers first.
MMEA: Do you delete them when the lenses are returned?

CSA: Well; if you ask, but we like to hold on to them to make your next rental more convenient. As I said…
IN UNISON: We put our customers first.
MMEA: So, where on the site would a person upload this stuff - I’d like to see the security.

CSA: It’s actually easier than that, you just FAX it to us. Our customers find it more convenient.
MMEA: FAX? as in phone number, dial tone, and paper lying on the floor? Have you heard of identity theft?

CSA: Sure, but what’s that got to do…
MMEA: ‘Cause with that information you could pretty much become me. I’m not sure my wife would know the difference.

CSA: We’d never let that happen, you know we put our customers first.
MMEA: Yeah, I got that. What if we traded? Would you be willing to give me your driver’s license, social security number, and I’ll let you skip the utility bill.

CSA: Clearly sir you are not interested in doing business today.
MMEA: My point exactly, could you pass this along to your management?

The MMEA did the photo shoot without the very expensive lens, but with his identity intact.


  1. This is really interesting take on the concept.I never thought of it that way. I came across this site recently which I think it will be a great use of new ideas and informations. Thank you for sharing it with us.
    IT Architecture

  2. This is a really good read for me, Must admit that you are one of the best bloggers I ever saw.Thanks for posting this informative article.
    IT Architecture


Follow by Email