The Naperville city website has been down since October 2, 2012. I thought it would be helpful to mention the year, since city officials have no idea how long it will remain down; it may be weeks, months or even years….who knows. Originally the thought was a simple virus, however Naperville’s internet security system isn’t as effective as advertised by city officials. The fact that city manager Doug Krieger assured Naperville residents that Napeville’s website was absolutely safe and secure to the point of guaranteeing it, may have invited someone to challenge his foolish assumption. If I had to bet my favorite Clint Eastwood poster against Krieger’s shoes on whether or not some high school drop out could hack Naperville’s website while ‘herbing up’ in the basement of his folk’s home, I’d make that bet, and I would have won and been the proud owner of a pair of Krieger’s mismatched shoes.
What’s alarming for Naperville residents is that Doug Krieger’s boastful confidence in the ‘inhackability of the city’s website, is only exceeded by his boastful bragging about the ‘inhackability’ of Naperville’s foolish Smart Meters. Imagine Naperville’s absurd Smart Meter electric grid being down for days, weeks, or months; it doesn’t seem so ‘Smart’ now does it.
When all this ‘went down’ (pun intended), Naperville city manager wasn’t to be found. He was apparently out of town, and why shouldn’t he be…..what could possibly go wrong in his absence. His second in command (Marcie Schatz) a very competent city employee still in her learning curve, was left to try a keep the ship afloat, and she did an outstanding job. If you think about it, Krieger has a bang-up job. He’s not really accountable to anyone; it’s not an elected position, it’s appointed. The Naperville city council gives him free reign…almost like a ‘get-out-of-jail free’ card. He doesn’t need city council approval for any expense less than $100,000. He can afford to lose a pair of mismatched shoes.
This get’s us back to why Naperville is like Bone Gap, Illinois. In fact, you could bundle Naperville along with other Illinois cities such as Bullpit, Beaverville, Otterville, and Muddy, Illinois. The commonality of all is that none of have an active useable website. It’s not that those towns have websites that are down….they just don’t have a website, but then again neither does Naperville now.
However the bustling town of Oblong, Illinois (population 1700) does have a website which has been up and running. For those of you who don’t know where Bone Gap is, it’s just northwest of Flat Rock, Illinois. I spoke with Mayor Randy Rich and he can’t remember their website being down. He credits a fellow by the name of Herb Jones for maintaining and keeping the website useable. It’s interesting that his first name is ‘Herb’ considering our basement hypothesis above. Anyway (as Krieger would say) I am absolutely 100% confident and would guarantee that Herb Jones could secure Naperville’s website just as well as prior to October 2 and charge far less than the $673,000 Naperville is spending now to have a useable website within days, weeks, months, or who knows when.
Once the website is up and running, we would ask city manager Doug Krieger to be less challenging to hackers by eliminating the words ‘guarantee’ and ‘absolutely’ from his vocabulary. Or maybe better yet, the Naperville city council might want to groom and promote Marcie Schatz ‘second in command’ to the person in command.