It was just after 5 AM on a workday. I had my coffee, and I needed to quickly check my work email for status on a problem. Glancing through the list of new items, I was intrigued by an unexpected message from a LinkedIn group member who I respect. I wanted to leave a comment, so I clicked on the link.\tBut as I tried to logon to my LinkedIn account, a\u00a0CAPTCHA popped up questioning my credentials.\t\u201cDarn, I hate when this happens,\u201d I thought. \u201cNo worries, I\u2019ve been through this security checkpoint before.\u201d\tI typed in the two different words with the fuzzy characters. \u201cIs there a space between these or not?\u201d Nope \u2013 got it wrong.\u201d\tTake 2\tI got my glasses out and looked closer this time. Fortunately, you get to choose new images, if you think the one in front of you looks too weird. I hit the \u201crefresh\u201d button. Again, again and again. Finally, I liked about the fifth option. I typed in the two words. No dice.\tI was mad at myself. \u201cWake up Lohrmann \u2026.\u201d\tTake 3 & 4\tI tried again. Calmly, I liked the first image this time. I carefully typed each word, slowly and deliberately. INCORRECT! \u00a0\u2026. \u00a0What?\tI got up walked into the kitchen and got another cup of coffee. I came back three minutes later and stared at the screen. Now I was getting a bit annoyed. I went through the \u201crefresh\u201d choice about six more times. OK, I can get this one right. I checked the \u201cCaps Lock,\u201d but it was NOT on.\tI thought to myself, \u201cI will try to type as if I\u2019m acting in a kid\u2019s play in slowwwww motion.\u201d Here we go - I typed in each letter, one by one, very methodically. I went very, very, very slowly, making sure that each letter placed into the computer was exactly the way that I saw them on the screen. When I hit return, nope.\tFailure Options\tNow, I could hear the computer program talking to me: \u201cAre you really Dan Lohrmann? I don\u2019t think you are. In fact, I\u2019m going to make the task of logging in even more difficult for you, because I don\u2019t trust you. You\u2019re probably a bad-guy hacker. You are an imposter!\u201d\tI tried all kinds of other options. I launched another browser session and tried logging on by just going to LinkedIn directly. I used my trusted helpful \u201cProtection Suite\u201d with my logon passwords kept safe by a famous vendor. I tried, you know, everything I could think of - etc, etc, etc. But I kept getting that stupid captcha bottleneck.\t\u00a0I started questioning what was going on: \u201cWas this sad situation because I was logging in at an unexpected hour and they weren\u2019t going to let me onto the website until after 6 AM? Did I surprise them and fail the profile with my too-early activity? Is this like my credit card number showing-up in China?\u201d\tThis \u201cincident\u201d was now escalating in my mind. \u201cLet\u2019s activate the command center \u2013 just kidding.\u201d \u00a0But I was getting really, really annoyed. My thoughts were far from supportive of the security industry at this point.\t\u201cWho created this stupid CAPTCHA-thing anyway? I looked it up. \u00a0I\u2019ll send him a letter. Why are the images getting more and more difficult over the years? Why are there different fonts with all these crazy lines running through them that could be letters or just distractions. I think a computer program could figure this\u00a0out easier than me \u2013 or maybe not.\u201d\tI closed my eyes and pondered. Maybe this was a business opportunity? I did some Google searches. My mind raced: \u201cAre there\u00a0CAPTCHA alternatives? I really like LinkedIn, but how about a frequent flyer line for \u201conline travelers\u201d who are trusted? Can I sign up for some different authentication scheme? What about\u2026.\u201d \u00a0\tOK \u2013 back to the task at hand. This rabbit trail, is getting really bothersome, but \u201cI WILL NOT BE DEFEATED! I\u00a0WILL OVERCOME THE SECURITY OBSTACLES PLACED BEFORE ME at 5:15 AM!\u201d\tWait It Out\tYou can stop the\u00a0video\u00a0and\u00a0fast-forward\u00a0at this point. The sad truth is that this process (and associated negative\u00a0thoughts) went on, and on for about another 20 minutes. Yes, I was a glutton for punishment, and I don\u2019t really know why. Still, I never successfully logged onto LinkedIn during that hour. My morning was unofficially\u00a0a mess.\t\u00a0I turned off my computer. Read a book, worked out, took a shower and ate breakfast. After more than an hour, I calmly approached my\u00a0PC, turned it on\u00a0and\u00a0tried\u00a0LinkedIn\u00a0again.\tIt worked! Oh yeah \u2026 No CAPTCHA, no waiting, no delay \u2013 I was in. I was set free!! Released from CAPTCHA hell!\u00a0 CELEBRATION! Yes, I started singing in my head: \u201cCelebrate good times come-on\u2026\u201d\tAnalysis\tThat night after work, I looked back and laughed at myself. All that for trying to leave a helpful comment? I thought about the crazy sequence of events. \u201cCould I ever have dreamed of this happening twenty years ago? I wanted justice. But this is a free service. \u00a0OK, we\u2019re in the 21st century \u2026 I\u2019ll write a blog \u2026 I\u2019ll rant.\u00a0 I\u2019ll try to make lemonade out of this lemon. There must be others who\u2019ve experienced the same things. Perhaps this happened for a good reason? \u201c\tGetting more personal in my organizational\u00a0psychotherapy: \u00a0\u201cDo my customers see our government security services in the same way sometimes? Is this another example of security as a disabler?\u201d \u00a0This was a reminder to me (and us) to walk a mile in their shoes. Eat our own virtual dog food. Admit failures. Move or remove cyber barriers to getting things done, if possible.\t\u00a0I\u2019m sure there is another side to this story. No doubt,\u00a0CAPTCHA security works in most cases. If I let LinkedIn executives explain, they might tell me how I messed up. But that\u2019s probably not worth the effort.\u00a0(Unless they want to respond to this blog\u2026.) Nevertheless, I don\u2019t think I\u2019ll ever forget my morning in unexpected social networking logon misery.\tThoughts or stories? Ever been in CAPTCHA hell?