07-02c Gopher Holes

by

Tags: Fiction, Vignettes, Workplace, .

Desc: Drama Story: The Gophers a re ready to strike, and they do. There's a few games to follow up, but the play is fun for the winners and not the bad guys.

Gerry provides the Gophers with the very best and latest of the computer hardware and software, often before it's officially available to the public. They also have access to the fastest Internet services, often by cut outs and directly into the backbones in several countries, making their external access of company computer systems very difficult to trace back to them.

They develop programs to install on systems to allow the systems to report back on log in IDs and passwords, even one to record on screen activity as video, to see scripted password entries in virtual keyboards. In many cases these programs are inserted into the target systems by agents in place in the company. Spies are so well placed the programs are being installed onto new computers in the main target companies because they're included in the company's corporate computer build image. When the systems log into the corporate domain server they download any new information to storage on the server and later in the day the server sends the data over the Internet to the Gophers via a number of cut-out file servers. Making their activities much harder to detect or track.

By mid 2014 they've all the banking details for the offshore bank accounts of the corporate fat cats. Using this information the Gophers change all the passwords and security systems to allow the fat cats to put money into the accounts, but not withdraw any money. They take over full control of their blood money.

The list of target fat cats expands as the names of actively involved U MAMA executives expands. The agents within U MAMA are able to set up recorders at all the regular meeting venues and most of the irregular venues. Because the devices are set to record and transmit hours after the end of the meeting they aren't readily detectable to most of the equipment used to find recording devices. Knowing his enemy's plans - often while they're being made, allows Gerry to set up a few counter operations.

Using the information gathered by the Gophers Gerry is able to have his companies underbid the U MAMA tenders when it suits him. In several cases U MAMA put in bids that'll lose money, because they intend to be able to push through many bogus claims during the term of the contract. Knowing which are legitimate claims and which aren't, Gerry is able to inform the proper people when a bogus claim is lodged. These claims are fully investigated and the company forced to pay fines too, making the contract a much bigger loss.

Gerry buys out several companies that supply critical components to some U MAMA companies. When the contracts come up for renewal he increases the cost prices by reducing the bulk buy discounts they'd been getting. Most of the companies are small owner managed ones where the owners were too scared of losing the business to stand up to the economic bullying by the U MAMA company, while Gerry knows more about how much the company needs the components and has a lot more cash reserves to keep in operation. This does force the U MAMA companies to increase the costs, often for products they're supplying to the US government on fixed price contracts. All this activity reduces the profitability of the U MAMA companies. Much of this isn't lawful, but there's no evidence to be found and used against him, his companies, or his agents.

By mid December 2014 all the top echelon U MAMA companies are on the verge of bankruptcy. The executives are talking about putting some of their blood money into the companies to keep them going over this period of economic disruption. Their official corporate figures have them making huge loses over the last three financial quarters, and the current quarter is worse. Their share prices are below face value and not trading well. Most of the other executives, those not involved in U MAMA's nastier activities, take to selling their shares in quiet deals - getting what they can for them. Gerry is approaching them and offering them face value for their shares. They're jumping at the price, because they can see the company is about to fold and they want to get out with as much as they can get. He doesn't approach anyone who's involved in any of the attacks against other countries.

All the main companies are having major board meetings during the week starting Monday December 15th. So just after lunch on Thursday December 11 Gerry activates Operation Clean Out. Agents in place in the Cayman Islands and Switzerland go to the banks and empty all the safety deposit boxes connected with the various bank accounts they're watching. The contents are packed up and flown direct to Carmel, where Gerry will go through them to identify family heirlooms and stolen art treasures.

In the early hours of Friday December 12th the Gophers go into each of the bank accounts in the Cayman Islands and Switzerland to transfer the balances out of the accounts and close the accounts down. They spend the rest of the day bouncing the funds around the world several times before they end up in Gerry's main clan accounts.

Board Games

Gerry has been quietly approaching family members of most of the U MAMA companies, those who aren't actively involved in company operations, and buying their shares for face value, since current market price is half the face value. They're very happy to sell and be out of any involvement with the company. During this process Gerry meets a granddaughter of the chairman of the board of the main lead company. She hates her grandfather and what the company is doing. She wants to change it all around and to make more useful items instead of military weapons. She's qualified to do this, and she has a Masters of Business Administration and experience in three other successful businesses.

At 9:30 a.m. Monday December 15th the board members of the most senior of the U MAMA companies are sitting down for their monthly meeting. This is the company which started the whole mess, the young lieutenant who found out about the diamond mine is now the eldest member and chairman of the board. This company was started by his great-great grandfather and he's now in charge of it. His two sons are on the board and are very active members of U MAMA, so is his eldest grandson. The company was publicly listed during the 1970s to get extra funds for expansion, but the family still owns the majority of shares - he thinks.

The meeting is formally opened. Suddenly the door opens and the chairman's thirty year old granddaughter enters the room with a man in his twenties. The man smiles at them, while he says, "You may as well forget about the agenda because this whole meeting just changed." They look at him in surprise while the chairman calls for security.

Ignoring the chairman's comments and yells the man and woman walk down the table, one on each side, dropping thin folders in front of each board member. Reaching the chairman's position, the man says, "If you care to open and read the first paper in these folders you'll find a certified copy of my share ownership. I now own eighty-two percent of the shares of this company." The board members are fast to open the folders and examine the paperwork. This man now owns every share except those owned by several people at the table. Many realise some of the other board members and family have sold him their shares.

Gulping, the chairman asks, "How, why?"

The smiling man says, "How is easy. After a few years of dedicated economic warfare against your company and a few others I waited until your shares were plummeting and I quietly approached most of your shareholders to purchase their shares, paying more than market value. I waited until this morning to register the change of ownership so you wouldn't know what was happening. I'm taking direct control of the company and making many changes." He looks around the table with a grin, "You gentlemen now have two choices, resign and approve my replacements or force me to invite the Corporations Commission to investigate your management of the company." The board members gulp, "This company's all but bankrupt. The liabilities exceed the assets. The Corporations Commission would like to discuss the company's financial position and why you haven't reported it to the commission yet, the way you should have." Many of the listeners now have very pale expressions because they should have reported their financial problems months ago, and they now face prison terms for corporate mismanagement. The man continues, "The fourth page in the folders includes a list of new staff and board members. The company will be run by this lady, with my full support."

In anger the chairman sputters, and says, "You're not destroying my company like this. I'll transfer one hundred million dollars of my own money into the company and keep it afloat."

With a smile very much like a gloat, the man says, "Really, and where will you steal this money from. A bank account in Switzerland or the Cayman Islands. Show me an account with that amount of money in it and I'll withdraw this proposal."

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Story tagged with:
Fiction / Vignettes / Workplace /