Worst pitch of the month: Secret Sweater and solving women's problems

Summary:This month's roundup also includes a few positive spins that deserved to be lauded rather than lampooned.

First up is this one from, well, I'm not sure as a company is never specified once in the email.

The most that can be gleaned based on the subject line, "Get your picture taken by Ed Snowden at RSA today!," is that the pitch is promoting an impersonator of the most famous former government contractor amid the 2014 RSA Conference in San Francisco this week.

Perhaps I would have learned more if I went to the booth.

Still, I couldn't decide if it was the worst or rather the BEST pitch ever. I'm leaning toward the latter. I'll let you decide for yourself:

If you’re going to RSA, come by booth 2332 and get your picture taken by Ed Snowden, and yes, that’s his name, we’ll show you his driver’s license to prove it!  Pick one of the following secrets to leak, get your picture taken and we’ll social media it….you can win a Google Chrome but much cooler is you can tell your buddies you met a real-life Edward Snowden…and we’re only about 3 aisles away from the NSA booth which is funny as heck!  Call me at 408 607 7118 if you want more info as I’ll be at the show all day…

Here’s the secrets you can choose from:

  • My budget is so big, I expect to win all the door prizes.
  • I have no budget authority.
  • Gary McGraw is my hero.
  • I don't know what I am doing.
  • I thought CISSP were random letters.
  • I use the default passwords.
  • I fell for the Nigerian scam.
  • I use "to" instead of "bcc" for mass emails.
  • I wonder if the logging software knows what I do all day?
  • I use the same password for all my logins.
  • You can put any letter in front I "aas" and I'll buy it.
  • I'm a member of Anonymous
  • My middle name is Danger !

Thanks, and have a great show!

I guess now I'll never know.

Finally, there was this timely email sent by Trend Micro just ahead of the final weekend of the Mardi Gras season.

One might assume that connecting an annual celebration/public debauchery to enterprise content security software might be a stretch, but maybe it's just perceptive.

Regardless, I'm including this one just because at the very heart of it, this is chock full of good advice -- some that should be heeded everyday of the year. Enjoy.

Don’t let a trip to Mardi Gras leave you with a social media hangover

Mardi Gras parties have come to mean celebrations of costumes, masks, beads, floats and, you guessed it, drunken debauchery. It’s easy for this holiday to yield embarrassing pictures, and if your social media privacy settings are not carefully managed, you could end up with a social media hangover.

Christopher Budd, Trend Micro’s global threat communication manager, offers these tips to ensure you still have a good time celebrating without having to worry about what may end up being public on the Internet:

Review photos you’re tagged in before they appear on your profile


Choose carefully who can see photos you upload of your friends


Only accept friend requests from people you know to avoid being associated with inappropriate content


Turn off geo-location settings to avoid being spotted where you shouldn’t be


Ask permission before posting photos of your friends


“Before photos and videos get the best of your conscience, take a few minutes to update your privacy settings,” said Budd. “Log into each social media account, review the appropriate privacy settings and keep these settings updated regularly. Adequately managing your profile will ensure your boss, grandparents or significant other doesn’t see something you’ll later regret.”

If you think you have privacy, think again:


Solutions such as Trend Micro’s Titanium Maximum Security help users to properly manage social media privacy settings and alert users when they have privacy vulnerabilities.

Images via Secret Sweater, Trend Micro

Topics: Tech Industry, CXO, Mobility, Start-Ups, Developer


Rachel King is a staff writer for CBS Interactive based in San Francisco, covering business and enterprise technology for ZDNet, CNET and SmartPlanet. She has previously worked for The Business Insider, FastCompany.com, CNN's San Francisco bureau and the U.S. Department of State. Rachel has also written for MainStreet.com, Irish Americ... Full Bio

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