This post will answer your questions about IT pranks that you can pull off for April Fools Day or any other day of the year. We have an IT prank that will surprise you, whether you are an IT pro with decades’ of experience or a novice who just discovered that CTRL+SHIFT+ESC allows you to access the task manager faster (you’re very welcome).
Let’s be real, first:
These pranks should be considered lighthearted. *If the prank involves accessing computers of others, be sure to check your company’s policy. *Retain your target’s computer files. Don’t place a target in a situation where they have to shut down their computer or lose their work. *Don’t go to jail. We are not responsible if you end up in jail. We won’t take your call.
Let’s have fun and crowdsource the ultimate IT pranks list. If your prank isn’t on the list, please share it with us via Twitter (@globalknowledge).
“OKAY PRINTER.” Alexa-life Upgrade for the Office Printer/Copier
A sign should be placed above the machine that states, “This machine can now be voice-operated.” You can speak directly into the machine. For example, ‘OKAY COPIER, print three copies on 8.5 by 11-inch paper.’ Or, ‘OKAY SCANNER, scan document and email to [email protected]'” Submitted by Dave, cybsercurity professional.
Flip the computer display upside-down
How to do it: You will need keyboard access.
For PC users: This shortcut will rotate someone’s screen. Hit CTRL + Alt + Left/Right/Down Arrow. How to fix: If your victim is unable to fix it, you can be the hero. To correct, hit CTRL + Alt + Up Arrow
Mac users will need to do this a bit more. Learn How to Rotate a Mac Screen.
My Cursor is Always Spinning
Make your computer cursor look busy.
How to do this: Windows: Start > Control Panel> Hardware and Sound> Mouse The default setting should be to highlight the “normal select” cursor. Click the browse button to select the appropriate busy icon.
If the user is unable to figure out how to change it, go back and retrace your steps. Click “use default” and then OK.
Cursor gif at HowtoGeek.com
I can’t click any of the icons on my computer screen
Daniel, a security and networking professional, pulled this prank back at college:
My roommate didn’t see the need for a password on his computer so I tried to find a funny and harmless way to show him why.
This prank requires basic knowledge about Microsoft Windows (my description was for Windows 7 but it could be done on any Windows platform). This can be a harmless prank if you follow the steps exactly. Be careful not to delete any!
Here’s the prank.
1. Create a Print Screen of your target’s desktop. Save the image somewhere you can easily find it again. Name the new folder “files” on your desktop. Drag all icons, shortcuts and files into the new folder by clicking and dragging. Move the folder to the right so that it is only visible at the edge. Click on the taskbar and go to “Properties.” Select the “Auto-hide task bar” option and click “OK.”6 Navigate to the location where you took your screenshot. Right-click the file and click “Set as desktop Background.”
The stage is set.
Now, sit back and observe the fervent mouse clicks by your victim trying to click icons which don’t exist, a frozen menu and files that won’t open. They will quickly grasp technical skills if they have any. If they aren’t technically inclined, you can make sure to supervise the process to ensure they don’t damage their own computer. This is an easy and fun IT prank that can easily be repeated – unless you want to keep your friends.
Did I Say “Yes” or “No”? I Meant “Yes.”
My phone was stolen by my 13-year-old brother. He also managed to change my keyboard settings and figure out my password.