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    Do Not Pass Go

    | Haarlem, The Netherlands |

    (My company provides web-design and hosting. A new customer, who’s just been sent his e-mail settings and password to his private account, calls.)

    Customer: “I followed the instructions on setting up my e-mail, but my mail client keeps giving an error.”

    Me: “Okay, what’s the error?”

    Customer: “It says ‘error logging into remote server’.”

    Me: “Right. You’re sure you entered the correct credentials from the mail we sent you?”

    (The customer affirms that, so I logon to the mail server to examine the logs.)

    Me: “Okay, I’m looking at the logs right now. Can you try to login again, so I can see what the exact error message is the server is giving?”

    (Over the next ten minutes or so I try a few other things.)

    Me: “I’m sorry sir, I’m running out of options. Just to be sure, could you literally copy and paste your password into the password field? Every so often people mistake a zero for an ‘O’ or such.”

    Customer: “That’s not necessary. I always use the same password for all my email-accounts. I think I know it pretty well.” *chuckles confidently*

    Me: “Sir, how would we know your preferred password? You’ll need to enter the one in the account mail we sent you.”

    Customer: “Ah, I had been wondering what that funny word was.”