Feeds

Chinese state research unit pays $1,000 for USB stick

128MB, HP-branded, none of your cheap rubbish

SANS - Survey on application security programs

Trouble-making Chinese paper the Southern Metropolis Daily has turned up an invoice showing that the Chinese Academy of Sciences is paying more than $1,000 for 128MB memory sticks.

The price is about nine times what one might expect, and when the paper questioned HP they were told that the unit should cost around $47 but that an exact replacement (recommended for use with an HP printer) could cost as much as $100 – that being the most expensive stick the company sells.

Invoice image

The invoice was posted by the Southern Metropolis Daily, and reproduced by Penn Olson

Defending the price paid, a rep from the Chinese Academy of Sciences told reporters that the sticks had to be approved and purchased centrally, and pointed out that the prices paid were on a public website, though when the paper's researcher tried to find the site, access was restricted to those with a government ID.

As the story gained ground locally, the academy struggled to explain that it was adding a sharing capability to the printer, and that it just hadn't looked closely at the contract which was now under review – so it was incompetence, rather than corruption, which led to the unreasonable pricing.

But the publicity is prompting discussions about how open public bodies in China should be with their spending, as reported in a poorly-translated piece on Network in China, with greater transparency being posited as a solution.

$1,000 for a 128MB memory stick might seem a little steep, but it's a bargain when compared to the $200,000 the US Government paid for a mobile weather app which doesn't work, and the Chinese can probably better afford it too. ®

Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction

More from The Register

next story
WTF happened to Pac-Man?
In his thirties and still afraid of ghosts
Reg man builds smart home rig, gains SUPREME CONTROL of DOMAIN – Pics
LightwaveRF and Arduino: Bright ideas for dim DIYers
Leaked pics show EMBIGGENED iPhone 6 screen
Fat-fingered fanbois rejoice over Chinternet snaps
Apple patent LOCKS drivers out of their OWN PHONES
I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't let you text that
Microsoft signs Motorola to Android patent pact – no, not THAT Motorola
The part that Google never got will play ball with Redmond
Slip your finger in this ring and unlock your backdoor, phone, etc
Take a look at this new NFC jewellery – why, what were you thinking of?
Happy 25th birthday, Game Boy!
Monochrome handset ushered in modern mobile gaming era
Rounded corners? Pah! Amazon's '3D phone has eye-tracking tech'
Now THAT'S what we call a proper new feature
Zucker punched: Google gobbles Facebook-wooed Titan Aerospace
Up, up and away in my beautiful balloon flying broadband-bot
prev story

Whitepapers

Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.