Let the Devil Wear Black - Memoirs of an analyst

James F. Linden - Writer ...
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Resources - False Instrument

Taking out an incriminating section of the report that is central to the tribunal case but making a really bad job of it.

Chapter 16

One thing that stood out in the industrial tribunal evidence supplied by the company was that the 'InComp' computer report that was supplied to the industrial tribunal was a specially edited version and not the original that the dismissing officer had access to.

Bexley had already stated that he was prepared to 'doctor' evidence before letting us see it — the company had deliberately denied me access to any useful evidence in the case to that date — so one might assume that it was accepted culture within that part of the company to change anything that the company wanted to hide — a procedure that really required a level of expertise that was not demonstrated with any particular consistency within the case:—

This is one of the paragraphs from the reasons for the dismissal letter from 'Snaith'. You can see that it explicitly refers to the 'unauthorised removal of the ATTRIB command.'

The ATTRIB command is an executable file that exists in the operating system directory.

This is a section of the letter from 'Col Burgess' requesting the 'InComp' report. You can see section 7 is clearly defined and requests that section 7 should be about the contents of the directory that has the ATTRIB command in it.

The problem is that that that directory contains an abundance of evidence of management computer fraud in the form of date- time-stamp rigging.

Snaith wouldn't have any problem with that but letting someone with an interest in exposing the truth about the report have a look at it and some people might be getting into enough trouble to warrant them being promoted out of trouble and there are only so many positions at the top.

The version of the computer report that was supplied to the industrial tribual with the original section 7 removed and the old section 8 renumbered '7', signed in the space by David Hicks (Stultus Nother) of Vistec Computer Services Limited (InComp) which as of 1st December 2012 has been in liquidation.

The fact that there is barely enough room for a single-line section, followed by his signature between the bottom of the last section that we can see and the bottom of page indicates that there was another page so either:

  1. This page - edited and renumbered, was printed out in it entirity, just for the industrial tribunal and then signed by David Hicks;
  2. It is a cut and paste job with a photocopier; or,
  3. Both.

1. Edited The alignment of the '7.' is entirely consistent with the other numbers in the other paragraphs.
The 'inter-line' spacing measures as the same as the 'inter-paragraph' spacing and that is entirely consistent with the other paragraphs.
The inter-line -paragraph spacing of the date at the bottom is not consistent with the other lines of text on the page.
2. Cut & paste There is no page number on this page of the report.
The date line is not a whole number of lines down the page.
The non-integer inter-paragraph spacing on the signature line can be varied by changing font size on the lines above it although this is unlikely and so unusual as to be discounted as sufficiently improbable.
2. Both. The new paragraph '7' aligns vertically and horizontally with the page above it and is most likely to be the product of editing on a computer.
The spacing on the signature line is not consistent and is unlikely to have been caused by changing font size on other lines therefore is most likely to be the result of cut and paste on the photocopier.

Take your pick. He admitted under oath that the company told him what to write in the report so providing a special, 'paragraph-impoverished' copy especially for the industrial tribunal would have been within the range of deviation from socially acceptible activity already defined by producing the original report in the first place.

This is the directory refered to in Col Burgess' report-request letter as needing a paragraph of its own; and, the directory that has the ATTRIB command missing from it, refered to in Snaith's letter of the reasons for the dismissal.

All of the files would normally have the same date.

Countering speculation that this directory was changed so as to hide the version of the operating system, you can tell that from the file lengths — these numbers being written down just to the right of where it says 'EXE' and you can see that it is plainly version 5.

It is more likely that this was a convenient directory to test out the time-stamp scrambler program that they used as you can see from the two times highlighted — 6:61 and 14:60.

Here is the capture program that was planted with its unfortunately edited date-time-stamp, showing that it was compiled backwards in time, thus breaking the second law of thermodynamics if the company's version of events is to be believed.

Also here is the wires program that was apparently saved at the end of February, although Harry didn't give me the idea for the program until the summer of that year.

Clearly, the dismissing officer, Snaith, has seen the missing section of the computer report and written about its contents in his 'resaons for the dismissal' letter. If it ended there, nobody would have known any different and clearly, by playing for time, trying to make the case run over the tribunal time limit, Bexley was playing for an end that didn't involve any information having to escape the protective environment of the company.

However, the report was published in the industrial tribunal and the section demonstrated company computer fraud, so that needed hiding. The new version would have stood up without the requesting letter; and, without the dissisal letter; and, without the directory listings - so really, it didn't stand a chance. It just had too many things going against it.

Apart from that, if I had seen all of this at the original hearing, it would have been stopped there and then. A missed opportunity that would have led to no more than a few managers being promoted out of trouble and the case being dropped. Unless I had then called in the fraud squad, of course. Ho hum.

This was all getting very ‘Edge of Darkness’ again.

Copyright © 2012-2014 James F Linden. All Rights Reserved.