Breaking the IC

Note:  This job is centered in Hong Kong, rather than Seattle.

The runners are contacted through their usual channels for a high-profile job versus a Matrix corporation called Magnadyne.  The meet is to take place at the Happy Valley Arena on the Wanchai Causeway, an upscale neighbourhood in the heart of Hong Kong.  If the runners are not from the city, their fixers can give them relevant info for where they are heading.

Mr. Johnson is a Cantonese man in a very expensive suit.  While he does not represent the primary hiring party, there are enough people that want to see Magnadyne’s product fail, that he serves as a decent proxy.  His real name is Asakura Hosagawa, a representative for Xiao-Renraku.

Hosagawa tells the team that one of their primary competitors, Magnadyne, has announced that they intend to release some new revolution in IC constructs in roughly a week’s time. The team is to journey out to Magnadyne’s Sai Kung facility, destroy the original data from Magnadyne’s system and replace their master copy with a dummy file (which is provided).

The dummy file is not a virus, but a piece of software designed to corrupt a file and change it subtly to humiliate Magnadyne when the program is unveiled. Magnadyne’s iconography is heavily anime inspired, so Neo-NET (the main patrons) has created a program to change the rendered icon to a crude Hentai animation, while reducing resolution of the image substantially. The program adapts to any accesses to the Master copy, corrupting any tertiary copies as well.
Payment for the run is 50,000¥ each, transmitted to a slush bank account when the file is loaded onto the mainframe. Of course, 60% is in company credit. Any more than that will come at a conversion cost (reduce return by 10%). The team is provided with the layout of the compound (see Grounds image).

The compound is on the outside of the city, to get away from the gangs and the noise of the core. It is surrounded in a 3 meter tall wall topped with concertina wire angled outward. The street-side wall is lined with holographic AR advertisements for Magnadyne, Wuxing, Evo and other PPG members. Tall trees line the back wall of the compound to block out the neighbouring corporate compound, who is a rival of Magnadyne.

The grounds are protected by several watchers and spirits of the elements (Air and Plant), as well as drone surveillance. Security is comprised of guards with some cybernetic modification and a couple physads. Cybereyes, Smartlink, optical improvements, datajacks and Wired reflexes are implanted in their security personnel. All standard security guards carry sidearms with gel rounds loaded and a clip of regular rounds, in case stopping power is required. They also carry stun batons, incase the target gets too close. All guards wear headset radios, so they can report anything unusual on the fly.
There are also several Grade 3 Initiate Wujen on site (Masking, Shielding, Invoking) who are summoned to deal with magical threats. If a hostile is located on site, the building is locked down and a tactical team is dispatched. A tactical team is armed with Wired II, security grade armour, riot shields and helmets as well as improved weaponry. A Wujen sustains shielding over the troops while they incapacitate the intruders. All guns are loaded with APDS.

1 = R & D : Cyberterminal Development. This four story building is where the company develops Utilities for use in corporate cyberterminals. This includes programming suites information sharing/networking protocols and even some programs for casual use. The building is a giant cube farm, with several large terminal rooms and employee necessities.
2 = Compound Facilities. This single story building of dark tinted (bulletproof) glass, houses several key company functions. Security is dispatched from this building, but there are several employee facilities here as well, including a squash court, cafeteria, gym and an indoor pool.
3 = R & D : Subsystem Security. This is where Magnadyne HK develops their latest and greatest in the world of Matrix security. New programs for security hackers, semi-autonomous knowsofts and most importantly to the runners, IC constructs. Their paydata resides in this three story complex. The building is like #1, where it is a huge cube farm dotted with server rooms, facilities and executive offices. To get access to the main computer core, they have to find the main server room or a workstation with access to it.
4 = Sentry Towers. Guards with long range rifles man searchlights on these towers. They are assisted by automated drones, which relay tactical data to monitors in the towers. The rifles are armed with armor piercing rounds for tactical threats, or capsule rounds with Gamma-Scopolamine for those they wish to detain.
5 = Main Gatehouse. Magnadyne only lets specific people into their operational R&D HQ in China. Cars are required to pull into this hut and stop for a guard inspection of credentials. During this time, tire blades emerge in front and behind the vehicle to slash tires of any cars trying to make a quick escape. The gate is monitored by camera and radar, both of which are redundantly observed through the internal network.
6 = Residence. The brightest minds of Magnadyne are given all the comforts of home without straying too far from work. This ten story condominium complex houses their scientists in comfort. The building also includes a school, daycare, Laundromat, bar and a small food court (all PPG sponsored restaurants). The corporation tries to ensure anything their citizens want is on site. They subtly dissuade their employees from entering the sometimes dangerous city of Hong Kong.
7 = Garden. For those who like being outdoors, this garden is the perfect place. It has a small pond, paths winding through a wooded grove, a zen garden and on the outside, a tennis court.

 Corporate Product Design Team Building (#1)


1 – Cube Farm.  A massive group of cubicles, dotted with structural supports, where all the little wageslaves put in their boring nine-to-five jobs.  Camera domes loom overhead.

2 – Lesser Management.  Low level mangers get an office with a window, tucked away in a corner of the building.  The doors are locked with a keypad maglock and have cheap furniture.  They use their own commlink to interface with the system and as a result, many of these managers end up taking most of their work home with them from time to time.

3 – Elevators.  Cameras relay information to complex security and can be locked down, if needed.

4 – Stairs.

5 – Public Washrooms.  Any visitors to the building have free access to these restrooms.  On the upper floors, these are more employee washrooms.

6 – Employee Washrooms.  While less clean than the public restrooms, these offer the bare essentials to the programmers.

7 – Server Rooms.  These rooms are monitored by security and require a card key for entry (Yellow clearance).  The room is kept cold but all servers are networked across all floors.  A hacker can find any software in the building from one server room (the data they are after isn’t here).

8 – Upper Management.  These room are filled with comfortable furniture and the owner can decorate them as they see fit.  Windows wrap around the outer wall, though most don’t see it, since the door is locked with a thumbprint scanner.  Managers can eavesdrop on any activity of any employee from their workstation, if they have reason to believe an employee isn’t doing their job.

9 – Human Resources.  The doors are always open in this office.  Six people work in HR for this building.  Most work on the ground level to process job requests and the like, while the upper floors are separated into small offices, where employees can come forth with their concerns of issues of job ethics.

10 – Break Room.  Cameras monitor this room, where the employees can sit and eat their meals, play cards or just complain about their job to their coworkers.  Vending machines dot the walls, in case employees forgot to pack a lunch.

11 – Vending Machines.  For those with a sweet tooth, these vending machines dole out sugary confections and caffeine-laden beverages for needy coders.

12 – Atrium.  When visitors enter the building, they are bombarded with AR and holograms, depicting Magnadyne’s contributions to the Matrix and overall customer satisfaction.  A desk is set up in the center of this space to welcome visitors and hand out company pamphlets to interested investors or potential employees.  On the upper floors, these are replaced with lesser management offices and cleaning supply storage rooms.


Compound Facilties (#2)


1 – Security.  This office requires a retinal scan for entry and houses the bulk of the compound’s security force.  Much of the real estate here is for the in-house spiders to monitor the network for outside intrusion, though a small garrison of troops is here, as are the in-house wujen.

2 – Armory.  While security is supposed to use non-lethal force, when a particularly dangerous infiltrator has gained entry, this room holds extra firepower and armor to help the troops defend themselves.

3 – Supply Room.  All the cleaning supplies for the building are stored here, as are two maintenance drones.

4 – Cafeteria.  Local cooks prepare meals for anyone willing to trek over to this building during their breaks.  There are also vending machines and a couple of local fast food chains that have set up small booths here.  The room is monitored by cameras, watching for signs of impropriety.

5 – Squash Courts.  The executives often find their way here to work off steam and discuss company strategy over a good game of squash.

6 – Change Rooms and Washrooms.  For those going to the pool, the gym or the courts, these room provide lockers, washrooms and showers for building patrons.

7 – Gym.  An oval track runs around the room perimeter, with workout equipment scattered through the center of the track.  Mirrors line the outer walls and cameras dot the ceiling, watching in case medical personnel are required for sustained injuries.

8 – Pool.  A heated pool predominates this room, allowing employees to indulge in some after-hours recreation.  Lifeguards are always on duty and a small area has been set up for people to dry off and/or relax.  Cameras dot the ceiling, in case of medical emergency.

9 – Medical Office.  Though small, this small office is well stocked with medical supplies, in case of injury in either the pool or the gym.  There are two medical technicians on at any given time.


R&D Building (#3)


1 – Cube Farm.  A massive group of cubicles, dotted with structural supports, where all the little wageslaves put in their boring nine-to-five jobs.  Camera domes loom overhead.

2 – Upper Management Offices.  The high level managers get these comfortable offices, separated from the lower programmers.  They monitor the progress of their employees and ensure the deadlines that are handed down are met, no matter the cost to the programmers.  Orange Clearance is required for these offices.

3 – Security Checkpoint.  Given the sensitive nature of the data in the building, security keeps a couple of guards posted here to ensure no one questionable makes it into the server room.  The room is watched by cameras from the central office in building #2.  The guards have the Red Clearance cards that allow access to the server room.

4 – Server Room.  While the runners can get the data they need from a manager’s office (after cracking the password and encryption), they can bypass the password protection by gaining direct access to the server room.  It doesn’t matter which server room they gain access to, as all the servers in this room are networked together to optimize space.

5 – Head Programmer/System Administrators.  These offices are a cluttered mess of hardware and technical manuals.  The people that work here are often plugged into the system and running system optimizations.  When the runners gain access to the servers, the sysadmin will likely notice right away.

6 – Elevators.  Cameras relay information to complex security and can be locked down, if needed.

7 – Stairs.

8 – Washrooms.

9 – Break Room.  This is where most of the programmers retreat to on their breaks.  The room is full of tables to have meals and play commlink games, since the room is isolated from the central grid (to keep people sitting in their cubicle from playing games going on in the break room).  The cameras in this room are isolated from the gaming grid, to avoid tampering.

10 – Lower Management Offices.  These small offices are glorified “cubicles with a door”.  Nonetheless, the privacy offered up serves as a status symbol for these people, who are responsible for the overseeing of their projects.

11 – Main Entrance.  A well-lit atrium welcomes employees to the building, while a guard ensures they have the required ID Badge to gain entrance.  On the upper floors, this area houses the cleaning supplies and maintenance drones.

12 – Garden Entrance.  The glass door looks out on the outdoor garden.  The area is dotted with comfortable chairs (some geomancy at work in their layout to draw in good qi from the garden), where many programmers sit and read during their breaks.  Similarly, on the upper floors, the window looks down on the garden with a similar arrangement of furniture.


Residence Basement

1 – Elevators.  Monitored by cameras and capable of being locked down.

2 – Stairs.

3 – Laundromat.  A small army of washer/dryers line the walls and form islands in this room, to try and accommodate the residents of the complex.  There are cameras in the corners of the room.

4 – Building System Maintenance.  This maintenance room is large and houses all the monitoring equipment that displays the flow of water and power into the building.  Backup generators can be fired up in the case of a power failure.

5 – Storage.  When employees have more stuff than space, they can store their excess belongings in the large lockers in this room.  The halls between lockers are monitored by cameras.

6 – Lower Mall.  The interior mall of the building houses many things for the employee that needs to spend their hard earned money.  The lower floor consists of convenience stores (food court and a bar) as well as a well-stocked grocery store on top of the usual commercial goods.

7 – Daycare.  Because employees can be expected to run long shifts at irregular hours, there is a daycare service to accommodate the needs of growing families.  Cameras watch over the daycare, so worried parents can check in from time to time.


Residence Ground Floor

1 – Elevators.  Monitored by cameras and capable of being locked down by security.

2 – Stairs.

3 – Common Room.  Public functions, Tupperware parties and other employee-organized functions happen in this room.  Cameras monitor the room to ensure nothing scandalous goes on, but the room has ample seating and several large tables to accommodate card games and other similar activities.

4 – Upper Mall.  This interior mall gives all the shops and convenience of any major city mall, without residents having to leave the premises to do it.  All the stores in the mall are part of Magnadyne, or their trusted partners.

5 – Security.  Building Security is fairly light overall, but is occasionally called upon to handle drunken disorderlies at the bar, or break up a domestic dispute between warring couples.  Plus the residents feel safer, knowing that a local group of officers are handy, if needed.

6 – School.  Once children are too old for daycare, the company offers them the option of in-house schooling.  They are given a decent level of education (while being indoctrinated into the corporate culture) during the day, without the worry of the kids being snatched up on their way home.


Residence Upper Floors

1 – Elevators.  Monitored by cameras and capable of lock down by security.

2 – Stairs.

3 – Condos.  These condos are small but well-kept.  Each is a two bedroom condominium with one bath and a kitchen.  There is a maid service that comes in once a week to clean and employees are treated well with the additional features given to them.

4 – Family Condo.  For growing families, these are three bedroom condos, with the same style of furnishings as the smaller ones.

5 – Garbage Depot.  Despite a strictly regimented recycling program, waste is generated fairly regularly in a compound this size.  Garbage and hard recycling (non-organics) are deposited her in waste receptacles and cleared out three times a week during the graveyard shift.

6 – Supplies.  All the cleaning supplies the maid service uses comes from these well-stocked closets.  The larger closet stores a vacuum drone which makes nightly passes up and down the hall.

7 – Monitor Station.  To ensure everyone gets their fair share, the monitoring station tracks the flow of power and water to each condo on the floor.  Using this system, the building can track where problems originate from and send mechanics straight to the root of the problem.

8 – Convenience Stall.  Ice machines, vending machines and daily supplies can be purchased here at a decent markup, if a resident finds themselves out of something and no time to run down to the mall.  A camera watches over the vending machines, to ensure nobody gets anything for free.


>>So, what’s so revolutionary about this new IC Magnadyne is piecing together, that the other corps want it destroyed?

 >>This stuff pushes Black IC to the fringes.  You’ve heard of UV Systems before?  Imagine that crap being used to ensnare hackers…

 >>For those not in the inner circles of hacking, can someone explain the UV System bit to us?

 >>A system that is so convincing, the brain can’t distinguish it from reality.  Makes it almost impossible for a hacker to willing jack out.  Once you’re in, they can do anything to your grey matter.

 >>Damn…but isn’t this the kind of shit the corps would be all over?  Make their systems super secure and all…

 >>Typically, yes.  But it’s the kind of technology they’d keep secret, rather than making it publicly available.  This would be bad for their black ops division.  They’d rather destroy the prototype and steal the brains behind the project for their own use.

 >>Guess the shadows in these parts are going to be pretty busy for a while, huh?

~ by 1nsomniac on January 7, 2009.

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