On Sun, 14 Dec 2003, Colin Percival wrote:

> At 19:33 13/12/2003 -0700, Brett Glass wrote:
> >Alas, many cybercafes -- especially those in Europe -- give you access to
> >a screen and a keyboard... and nothing else. They're worried that if
> >you can put media in the machine you can infect it or Trojan it.

> Based on what I've seen here in .uk, I suspect that the lack of drives
> has more to do with wanting to avoiding physical damage. Food and
> computers don't mix very well.

As someone who runs an ISP *AND* an Internet Cafe (well, more specifically
a "public access centre"), I can say that both these arguments are
important considerations, but also a third one that hasn't been mentioned,
and that is one of reducing appeal for would be thieves. WHEN (not if) the
joint gets "cased", if the monitor and keyboard are the only things that
are visible, the "appeal" of a bunch of readily accessible, easily sold
computers is removed.

We rarely have people who want to put on (or take off) their own material,
but those who do generally want to download a file (driver, patch, pdf,
document) or send a file (accounts file, letter, resume' or photos) and we
do that from another machine at the counter (after scanning for virus
etc). Loading executables is something we don't do at all unless there are
exceptional circumstances.


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