Best Buy Porn Thief Inquisitions Revealed

After reading “How Geek Squad Investigated Its Own Porn Thieves,” another fired Geek Squad tech has chimed in to tell us how the internal witch hunt for porn thieves proceeded.

I had worked for Geek Squad for over a year, and Best Buy a year and a half before that and was recently let go. Back when they started scanning computers, they said they found downloaded music and movies on our machine and we were to send them the hard drives. So we boxed them up and sent them out.

A month or so later the interrogations happened. We all had our turn, and when it was mine, I walked into a room with the table pushed against the wall and two chairs in the middle of the room sitting two feet apart with nothing in between.

Our store’s loss prevention manager and the district loss prevention manager was there, and I reached out to shake his hand. He shook mine, looked me in the eyes and said “I already know if you are going to tell me the truth or not,” with an intimidating grip on my hand still. Then we sat down, our knees inches apart. He asked me how long I had worked there, and how many hours a week I worked, why I liked working there. He didn’t really care why, he just wanted to tell me why he liked working for Best Buy. He told me, “Well, I used to be a cop, and when you’re a cop everything you do is reactive, you can’t really stop people from committing crimes. Here I normally get to come in and make sure processes are in place so we don’t have problems. But here we have a problem, and now I have to be reactive and be a cop again.”

From there he asked me all sorts of questions about why there was music on our computer and where it came from, which was mostly us backing up customer’s music because they paid us to, and my coworkers and i bringing in our iPods, which was ok with all the levels of management in the store. He even made a joke about how that wasn’t “SOP” (the Best Buy bible), but he knew that our store LP manager was ok with it. It was ok because they trusted us. I was asked why we had Linux isos, which made me laugh. Also, during the interview anytime I was asked a question, I don’t know wasn’t an acceptable answer. At one point I stopped answering him because I was just sitting there saying I don’t know. Then he had me write down everything I knew about in the precinct and sign it at the bottom. The district manager told me he would read it over afterwards to make sure it was “what they needed.” I filled out the paper, signed it and gave it to him. Then they told me if I talked to anyone about what happened I would be fired.

Then the interesting began. My supervisor immediately started looking for another position at one of the 3 new stores opening in our area. He got one and put in his two week notice and stopped caring about his job. Everything started falling apart, then he left so we had no supervisor. So I put in my two week notice and found another job. The thing was our supervisor didn’t know anything about fixing computers. All he card about was “selling our services” to people so he would meet his budgets and then tell us techs to fix whatever the customer wrote down which more than once included “retrieve deleted files” which yes we could have done if we were allowed to use the software, but we weren’t. So he left and everything got better. And I talked to my general manager about staying, and he told me he saw how I had helped being a leader once our supervisor left and he was impressed and would like to see me move up in the company. A few days later we had a new supervisor who was a really nice guy and knew his stuff about computer fixing.

Now, I know you guys know about Jonny Utah (internally Geek Squad drops the ‘h’ so they don’t get sued). Well I despise JonnyUtah. The entire time I worked there we were given goals of a certain number of computers which were to be fixed by JonnyUtah each week. The goal was seven. Most of the time we didn’t hit our JonnyUtah goals because we were able to fix all the computers we brought in ourselves without needing help. I disliked it because:

1) I didn’t get to work on the customer’s computer
2) Someone in another country that does not have the same privacy laws as the United States was fixing our customer’s computers.
3) Anytime we asked where the JonnyUtah guys were located we were told either it was “Top Secret” or “An undisclosed cave in a mountain on a remote island.” Seriously.
4) We did a much better job than Jonny ever. We had so many people bring computers back that those guys “fixed” still having problems or hardware issues that you can’t really fix over a remote connection.

On October 18th, the day after my birthday I came into work early and the entire district staff (probably 6 or 7 people) were hanging out in our area where we fix computers talking to my friend who was one of the other full time techs. I went into the break room to eat my lunch and my buddy came in and told me the district guys were asking him if he would be offended if he had to go out on the floor and sell Geek Squad services instead of fixing computers, and having JonnyUtah fix more of the computers. I clocked in and five minutes later was told by my general manager that I was being let go for having music and movies and unapproved software on the computer.

So whatever I don’t work there anymore, I’m not crying. But I wish people would realize that Geek Squad isn’t worth what you pay. Best Buy’s rules kept us from being great computer techs. They wouldn’t let us use linux in the store to do data backups because that required an extra $1500 (not exaggerating) from the customer and we had to UPS the drive to California. We weren’t allowed to do laptop repair in the store, even though I’m capable of handling a soldering iron to reattach people’s DC power jacks. And they’ll tell you this is because they are sending them to the “laptop techs” or whatever, but most of the time that stuff would come back broke anyways and customer’s would yell at us. It was a horrible situation for everyone and I think shows that not everything can work on a large scale. For someone like me computer repair is easy. I could have done so much more than they expected of me and brought in so much more money for them and made customers a lot happier not having to wait two days for a guy to put his laptop on the UPS truck. But that’s the thing. Geek Squad doesn’t want me. They want someone who will take your money and have someone in another country actually do the work. To sell you a $59 diagnostic fee to call you the next day and say “yeah, your laptop is completely dead just like you told us, com buy a new one.”

I hope people start realizing that Geek Squad is nothing more than marketing. You see the tie and the white shirt and you assume that the agent knows what they’re talking about. The truth is most of them don’t. There are no tests. There is very little training and that is mostly on how to sell things. In fact my old supervisor had a motto I heard him use way too often: Perception is reality.

I’ve enjoyed reading your site since before any of this ever happened, and although in some round about way I ended up getting fire because of an article that was posted on your site, I’ll forever support you guys because it’s sites like this that can make a difference (and you guys have) in how companies do their business and treat their customers.

Cheers,
Agent Zero

PREVIOUSLY: Leaks: How Geek Squad Investigated Its Own Porn Thieves
Best Buy’s Geek Squad Scours Stores In Person For Stolen Porn N’ Stuff
VIDEO: Consumerist Catches Geek Squad Stealing Porn From Customer’s Computer
(Photo: Victor Chiu)