One of the things I like to cover in my Securing The Human talks is how bad we humans are at judging risk. What may have worked for us 100,000 years ago in the grass plains of Africa no longer works in the 21st century. Risks back then were the type of risks that ate us, however risks now a days are far more complex. One of the problems is we greatly over estimate risks that we should not, and underestimate the real risks. One of my favorite examples is to ask people what greatest things they are afraid of when they visit the ocean? One of the most common things I hear are sharks, or more precisley being eaten by a shark while swimming in the ocean. Now this is a pretty scary thought, I personally do not like the idea either. However the odds of being eaten by a shark are 1 in 251,800,000. You probably have better luck with the lottery. Now, think about something else that can kill you while you visit the beach. In fact something twice as likely, what would it be? Vending machines. Yup, you have that correctly, vending machines are twice as likely to kill you as a shark. Think about it. People put their money in the vending machine but the bottle of coke does not come out. So they start shaking and rocking the machine to get their drink. It ends up falling on them and killing them.
I'm bringing this up because I just read an interesting article on cnn.com. A frustrated reporter was writing about his experience with broken vending machines, then has a survey asking his readers what is their most common response is when a vending machine does not give them their product. Out of nine different choices, the number one choice was ..... you guessed it shaking the machine. Of the 25,000 repondents, over 45% said they rock the machine. Little do these people realize it would probably be safer to pet a shark.