Rick Rolling for Good Security

Apparently I’m several years behind on the Internet meme of Rick Rolling. Its recently invaded one of the forums I frequent. The regulars are split on whether its as funny as “your shoelace is untied, ha ha, no it isn’t I made you look” or if it is actually kind of funny.
For the uninitiated, a rick roll according to wikipedia is “a classic bait and switch: a person provides a link they claim is relevant to the topic at hand, but the link actually takes the user to the music video for the 1987 Rick Astley song “Never Gonna Give You Up”
When people first heard the Rick Astley song they might think it sounds like a black guy is singing, then you see the music video and its MC mighty white. Its not what you expect. So when someone says they have a link to XYZ and instead you don’t get what you expect, you’ve been rickrolled.
The purpose of all of that backstory is simple. I’ve been wondering if the rickroll phenomena will succeed in educating users to be careful about links in a way that security awareness training never could.

2 Comments

  1. Interesting point of view, I’ve never looked at it under that light, I will certainly keep this in mind educating my user base about internet concepts and dangers.

  2. This isn’t new, of course, and I learned by more crude methods than an innocent music video. Back in the day on IRC and other services, “check out this site/link/clip/picture named something innocent” would send victims to pictures/videos of rather disgusting stuff.
    *That* certainly teaches one to be leery of links, definitely more so than something funny, cute, or humorous.

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