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Time to dust off your company's rulebook and review the rules for terminating employees and contractors. Don't be surprised to see Fannie Mae testifying to Congress soon about their rules, policies, and procedures for terminating employees and contractors.

In this case Fannie Mae terminated a contractor around 1pm or 1:30pm on October 24, 2008. But he was not required to turn in his badge or Fannie Mae-supplied laptop until the end of the day. At 2:53pm the contractor allegedly logged on to his Fannie Mae laptop and wrote a script that was designed to wipe out Fannie Mae's 4,000 servers on Jan. 31, 2009.

That's pretty quick and dirty programming, without requirements, specs, testing, and all that jazz.

According to the FBI, the malicious script was accidentally discovered by a UNIX engineer on Oct. 29. Fannie Mae engineers say that if the script had not been discovered, the script "would have caused millions of dollars in damage and possibly shut down the government-sponsored mortgage lender for a week."

Do you know where your rulebook is? Check it out, and make sure there are proper rules and controls in place to prevent this situation from happening in your shop.

See the rest of story at InformationWeek.com here and here.

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