Jordan Corbitt

Jordan Corbitt is a litigation associate in Baker Donelson’s Houston office. Contact him at jcorbitt@bakerdonelson.com.

TheCloud: Good Morning! TheCloud is a leading cloud-based provider, striving to secure your apps, email and confidential data in the cloud. How may we help you today?

Mr. Techie: My name is Mr. TechieTechie, I’m the CEO and founder of Tech to Tech. I have an account with TheCloud, but I’m having trouble accessing it all of the sudden. It keeps saying the password is incorrect.

TheCloud: I see, and what is your account number?

Mr. Techie: 7264388. I had access to the account just two days ago.  What changed?

TheCloud: It appears that the primary contact on the account, Mr. Disgruntled, logged in yesterday and made some changes to the account, including changing the network password.

Mr. Techie: Mr. Disgruntled hasn’t worked here in six months! How is he able to do that?

TheCloud: When the account was activated, it appears that you designated Mr. Disgruntled as the primary contact on the account, which enables him to make changes, including changes to login information. The primary contact also has access to company data, and is able to send and receive emails.

Mr. Techie: Well as I mentioned, Mr. Disgruntled was terminated more than six months ago, and he no longer is authorized on this account. Please delete Mr. Disgruntled as the primary contact and replace him with me.

TheCloud: Unfortunately, Mr. Techie, we are unable to do that. As primary contact, Mr. Disgruntled essentially owns the account and its content. Any changes that are made must be authorized by him.

Mr. Techie: I’m the CEO and founder of the company. Are you telling me that I’m locked out of my own account? And the only way I can get back in is with Mr. Disgruntled’s permission? That’s ridiculous. I own the account!

TheCloud: That’s right. And unfortunately, since you are not authorized on the account, that is all of the information I can provide you with today. Please have a pleasant weekend! Try not to think about Mr. Disgruntled destroying your data, contacting your customers and stealing your proprietary information! Buh-bye!

“Click.” Of course, a dutiful customer service representative would never let that last part slip. However, three days later, you realize that Mr. Disgruntled has indeed misrepresented to potential customers that he is still in charge of the company. He is taking orders and promising customers that their orders will arrive without delay. But they never get their orders, and a customer has now called you explaining that because her order never got there, she has lost $1,000,000 in revenue. Needless to say, she is upset, and using you as a supplier in her future business plans is the last thought on her mind. (more…)