GoDaddy Emails Employees, Says They’ll Get $650 Holiday Bonus: It Turns Out To Be A Lump Of Coal

From today’s Forbes Magazine:

You’d like to believe that corporate executives could be compassionate and empathetic during a pandemic. The holiday season, a reasonable worker would think, is the perfect time for management to express their appreciation. 

If you’re an employee at GoDaddy, the large internet domain registration and website hosting company, this wasn’t the case. You received the equivalent of a lump of coal in your Christmas stockings.

It was reported that GoDaddy sent an email to its employees telling them that they’d receive a bonus. Well, that sounds great right? There’s more to the story. The accompanying note sounded nice, “2020 has been a record year for GoDaddy, thanks to you!” In what seemed to be a generous holiday surprise the company added, “Though we cannot celebrate together during our annual Holiday Party, we want to show our appreciation and share a $650 one-time Holiday bonus!” 

About 500 employees, excited to receive some much-needed cash during this horrific Covid-19 time, happily clicked on the link. The email asked the employees to complete a form calling for some personal details. Given the fact that they’re receiving a payment, the request seemed reasonable, especially since it came directly from the company and didn’t appear shady or questionable.   

In a surprising and shocking turn of events, the employees who clicked on the link received a follow-up email admonishing them. The chastising email from GoDaddy’s security chief sternly read, “You are receiving this email because you failed our recent phishing test.” There wasn’t a $650 bonus at all. What they did get was a mandatory training class for falling victim to a corporate-sponsored phishing exercise (the process in which hackers lure unsuspecting people to offer personal data which could comprise the individual and company) purposely designed to test their workers. 

Read the complete article here.