Best Buy Making All Service Departments Geek Squadified

If you love the great porn-stealing and privacy-invading services currently offered by Geek Squad’s in-store and in-home tech support, have cheer: Best Buy is rebranding all its service departments into Geek Squads, according to an inside source. They’re testing it out in the New York metro area in preparation for a possible nation-wide rollout.

Of the move, a former employee writes…

installnum2geeksquad.jpg

“My personal feeling about all this is that they’re screwing the whole concept of GS into the ground. The people that Best Buy has and will hire for these “Geek” positions are (often times) under qualified. If Best Buy rolls this out nationwide, then I feel that any hope of turning GS into something reputable is lost. It then just becomes another gimmick or sales pitch and not what GS originally was; prompt, courteous service by a knowledgeable and friendly technician.

As Stalin quipped, quantity is a quality all its own.

Comments

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  1. Buran says:

    They lost their chance the moment they allowed people who illegally access private files (and yes, porn files are private) to work for them. And don’t give me this “it’s not wrong”. I don’t give you access to touch anything other than what you need to touch to do your job.

  2. scoobydoo says:

    Our BB (Chicagoland) changed this 2 months ago. The Magnolia installers are now all geeksquad douchebags . I wouldn’t trust them to install a lightbulb, let alone a frikkin 5000 plasma TV.

  3. ChrisC1234 says:

    In Louisiana, we’ve got the Geek Squad Home Theater Install Units too. I noticed it when driving by and seeing a big Geek Squad van with the home theater wording on it.

  4. doctor_cos wants you to remain calm says:

    Let’s remember worstBuy’s definition of ‘home theater’ is pretty wide…from your big dollar crap in the “Magnolia” area (oooOOOooo) to the $99 NoName “Home Theater in a Box”

    WorstBuy getting worse, you say? Don’t care. Don’t shop there.
    Yeah, it’s a shame what’s happening/happened to Geek Squad, but who honestly thought this would work out any differently?

  5. Scuba Steve says:

    Ugh.. I wish they’d ban those wannabe cop paint jobs.

  6. marsneedsrabbits says:

    Yay! More Geek Squad wackiness!
    Can we expect that the newly branded Geek Squad home installers will be as careful and honest in homes when installing stuff as they are with the computers that are brought into their stores, or can customers expect to have their privacy and property violated at home, too? Nothing like expanding on a brand that says “theft and invasion of privacy”.
    I would love to have a chat with whomever at Best Buy thinks this is a good idea. Best Buy’s open contempt for customers is puzzling, but is seems to be the business model they’ve chosen.
    Friends don’t let friends shop Best Buy.

  7. Leiterfluid says:

    @Buran: Don’t toss the word “illegally” so casually. I would imagine that Best Buy’s lawyers are smart enough to require that every work order include a signed release that authorizes Best Buy and Geek Squad agents to browse the entire contents of your filesystem.

    Of course, anyone who ever needs to hire out a 3rd party to perform any kind of work for them should be familar with the following 10 Immutable Laws of Security:
    [www.microsoft.com]

  8. roguefox says:

    I’m a former Circuit City employee and they are doing the same thing with the Firedog brand.

  9. The Stork says:

    @roguefox: What’s funny (as you probably know) is that was a lot of the advantage that CC was bragging about: the ability to have both services (computer and home theatre) under one roof so that the “convergence” of the two that higher-ups prattled on about would be easy. Of course, we ended up with our in-home computer tech doing HTIBASIC home theatre setups that he knew nothing about, so it was all a bunch of nonsense. But such is Circuit City.

  10. bohemian says:

    They guy who originally thought up geeksquad and cashed out to sell the idea to Best Buy is just getting that karma back for doing a business deal with this company.
    I hope he got a big check.

  11. BlueModred says:

    You guys are ridiculous. When it was Magnolia, you were ok with it, but now that those SAME GUYS are wearing black and orange, they must be bad.

    Nothing will change, this is simply more marketing from big Blue.

  12. kingdom2000 says:

    anyone that would pay those moronic high prices that Geek Squad charges to do simple tasks that a simple Google search would teach you deserves to get ripped off and files riffled through. I don’t like GS but I dislike stupidity even less.

  13. m4nea says:

    this web site breeds hate from isolated incidents.
    in any case; if you bring your computer in to have a virus removed, chances are it’s in some of the porn you got off limewire, so the technician you are paying to fix your computer is bound to see it.

  14. SBR249 says:

    Wonder how the GS will exploit this new twist. Buy a bunch of On-Demand porn on your newly installed home theater and watch it while pretending to check that it’s installed properly?

  15. Trai_Dep says:

    No. He’ll just check out your girlfriend while she showers.

  16. Buran says:

    @Leiterfluid: It’s illegal because it’s unauthorized access. Which is most certainly illegal, especially now that the PATRIOT Act includes computer trespass as one of the nasty things you can get the book throw at you for.

    You are authorized to fix someone’s computer, not browse their personal files.

    I throw the word “illegal” around, well, because it IS ILLEGAL.

    If I let you in to fix my television I don’t expect you to go through my filing cabinet while you wait for something to happen, and I can file charges against you for trespass.

  17. D-Bo says:

    @Buran:

    That’s not really a valid comparison since it is not likely that a piece of paper in your filing cabinet can affect the performance of your television. Your digital ‘personal’ files can contain a number of things that can directly affect the performance of your computer.

    But back on point, I don’t think all that much will really change as this is all just marketing BS anyway. I can’t say I’m surprised they’re milking the GS name for all it’s worth…

  18. Manok says:

    Who would honestly work for someone called Geek Squad? If the army was called “The nerd forces with guns”, would people join? There has to be a more honorable way to make money besides working in an organization known to rip people off and stealing files from customers.

  19. mrdelayer says:

    To think that Geek Squad are the only techs stealing or looking at your porn is pretty absurd.

    I’m pretty sure most techs will do that. (And won’t even charge as much as Geek Squad.)

  20. Buran says:

    @D-Bo: And image files and movies affect the performance of a computer how? There is no need to view them to repair a crashing OS, for example, or install software.

  21. Buran says:

    @m4nea: I really doubt file theft is an isolatd incident with geek squad.

  22. Blueskylaw says:

    That should read:

    Quantity HAS a quality all its own.

    Signed,
    (Uncle Joe)

  23. Blueskylaw says:

    That should read:

    Quantity HAS a quality all its own.

    Signed,
    (Uncle Joe)

  24. jugdish says:

    Buran unfortunately you are incorrect. Image and video files can be infected with viruses and spyware which definately affect system performance and security. In fact authors of viruses and spyware target those file types, because they are so widely used and shared. If you want proof I can send you a log file of the file types that our anti-virus program regularly blocks at the company that I am System Administrator at.

    Don’t get me wrong. Technicians should not copy files they see on your computer to their own computer or storage device, but to say that they are not going to see these file types while doing the job that they were hired to do is crazy.

  25. SupaHata says:

    First off in Florida they did this crap like a month ago. Second, if you had to deal with these customers you want a little something extra for your time and effort too. Finally, if you think prices are bad now for geek squad think of what they would be if every single person in GS had to be certified. WE ONLY START OUT AT $10.50/HR FOR CHRISTS SAKE.

  26. caramel says:

    speaking as a current Counter Intelligence Agent with the geek squad precinct in salisbury, md the only times in which an agent put look through a persons personal files is when doing any types of data backup or data recovery services just to make sure that all the data that the person requested for us to retrieve has been captured in whatever medium the customer wants it to be saved to. When the customer only wants to pay the 99 dollar charge…which only includes 9GB of data, we do search through that data to make sure that the importance of the information that’s on that hard drive gets saved. Now if sallys husband was doing something like, lets say downloading about 12 xvid dvd rips of girls shaking their booty, and each of them were about 700 mb each, and the whole contents of the hard drive was about 17 gb of stuff, I believe that sally would want her word documents and pictures saved rather than the husbands library of porn…Think before you judge because i surely could care less about the stuff that’s on these peoples computers…and like a gentleman said before, the main cause of viruses in this day and age is from kazaa, limewire, bearshare, imesh, shareeza, and hunting for cracks from illegally obtained programs. There’s now way that u can erridacate a virus without looking at all the files on the c structure and sometimes the recovery partition…what does go across the line is copying peoples stuff off of their machines for personal useage. I have never done that nor have any of my agents in my store. That’s immediate grounds for termination.

  27. Neritha says:

    Are you out of your brain, Caramel?

    Please go check your TechPC (actually, you would have needed to check your TechPC a couple of weeks ago – Geek Squad Corporate took our HDD – twice.) and just pay attention. There’s a myriad of opportunity to explore customer data when doing an Advanced Diagnostic and Repair, especially if it doesn’t go on Agent Jihadi Utah. An agent can easily read the Trend Micro CLS report, which seemingly lists every file scanned – the whole PC. If you’re a tech with a quarter of a brain, it’s no big deal to go grab NTUSER.dat. At our precinct, until they ripped the HDD out of the wall (and probably once one of us gets bored and puts it back on) we use TFTP to install a PXE bootable MRI – meaning simply by knowing the IP address of the computer and creating a share, I could simply FTP data off the PC and onto the TechPC – or MY PC AT HOME. There’s at least a dozen standalone FTP clients that will fit on a floppy – I’ve got one that runs off U3.

    Minneapolis is monitoring packets on VLAN3 and VLAN6 – but how could they possibly know the difference between somebody transferring a driver between the two units and transferring sensitive information – unless they have hundreds of full-time, well-trained techs breaking down thousands of packets to core data. If they do, then I want more money. Lots more.

    As for your knowledge of Geek Squad SOP, you’re performing a massive privacy violation just by your own incompetance. I wrote before about how we’re SUPPOSED to do backups – the customer is supposed to dictate the priority of the files, and we’re supposed to work on a directory-to-directory basis unless the customer specifies otherwise. Meaning if you TreeSize “My Documents” and it’s 11.9 GB, and the customer states that documents have a higher priority then “MyPorn”, and MyPorn is 6.6 GB, then the customer does NOT get a partial backup of that directory. It’s omitted and the customer gets 5.3 GB of backup. You are NOT supposed to go in and select individual files unless the customer states otherwise.

    You’re also assuming that your mentality is the mentality of everyone else at Geek Squad. I realize that in just two years of working at GS, had I been willing to subvert the law, I could have obtained hundreds, if not thousands, of social security numbers, credit card numbers, paypal accounts, Amazon Express accounts, et al. AutoComplete might be the single largest security leak every implemented.

    As for the GS rebranding of the Magnolia installers, it’s a giant non-issue, except for the fact that any time the installers trash somebody’s install, it’s going to make Geek Squad look bad. We look insanely incompetant from day to day anyway with all the data theft and data loss, overcharging, et al. They didn’t fire, hire, or modify policy for the switchover at the moment. Except for the silly Jungle Safari/Gas Station Attendant unis, it’s all the same.

    More importantly, this applies Geek Squad SOP to home theatre installers – primarily the “Can I wash your windows for a nominal charge?” theory. Geek Squad double agents (the inhome techs) are heavily responsible and heavily accountable for their budget – meaning they often have to attach services “ala carte” to your already purchased In-Home service. So while you paid for the Geek to come in and install your PC, he’s half-worried about getting the job done and training you on how to use the PC, and half concerned with attaching an anti-virus and anti-spyware install, or a memory upgrade, or anything else to your order. You bought the install, but the sales pitch is included for free! Now imagine that coming along with your Home Theatre install.

  28. Dontdieman says:

    no matter where you go Tech’s will look at your shit its that simple

  29. Dontdieman says:

    @Neritha: “More importantly, this applies Geek Squad SOP to home theatre installers – primarily the “Can I wash your windows for a nominal charge?” theory. Geek Squad double agents (the inhome techs) are heavily responsible and heavily accountable for their budget – meaning they often have to attach services “ala carte” to your already purchased In-Home service. So while you paid for the Geek to come in and install your PC, he’s half-worried about getting the job done and training you on how to use the PC, and half concerned with attaching an anti-virus and anti-spyware install, or a memory upgrade, or anything else to your order. You bought the install, but the sales pitch is included for free! Now imagine that coming along with your Home Theatre install.”


    You’re wrong,You’re wrong,You’re wrong,You’re wrong,You’re wrong,You’re wrong.

    why dont you ask your service’s manager what the switch over really means because operantly you have no fucking clue.

    quit talking out your ass.

    In fact nothing really changed but the Uniform and the vans.

    thats it.

  30. Neritha says:

    Wow. You’re smart, and you can read the retail insider. Very good!

    Except that you’re shortsighted. They haven’t modified SOP for installers because it would be seriously crazy to have to retrain all the installers who just a short while ago were retrained when they changed them over to Magnolia.

    Except that Best Buy owns the Magnolia brand and the Geek Squad brand, and neither of those have changed. So ask yourself, “Why would they go to the trouble of rebranding the installers? If the installers aren’t going to do anything different, does it matter that much to the customer whether they’re magnolia installers and wearing those shirts, or GSI and wearing that fugly khaki thing?”