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Perhaps the most annoying part about Uplink, is when you think you've gotten away with something but you really haven't. A couple in-game days later or so, you suddenly find your Gateway shut down and you're disavowed.

It's easy enough to find out who caught you - just log in as your disavowed user, and you'll see. But what I often can't figure out is how I got caught.

In the most recent case, the job I was doing was of the "find financial details" sort. It's easy enough that it could be done straight after the Tutorial, if they allowed such low-ranked players to do these.

I loaded up my usual route, which includes probably every server listed in InterNIC (and makes game failure that much more annoying to deal with). Then, I clicked twice on the target system - once to remove it from the loaded route, and again to put it at the end. After connecting to the bank, I entered in the target account as a username and let the Password Cracker have at it. A little bit later, and with the trace percentage still in single digits, I was in the account. I opened up my e-mail and sent a reply with the appropriate data. Then, I closed the connection and deleted my logs from InterNIC (InterNIC is always my first hop - I only delete my admin logon events, and the connection routing events).

I'm fairly certain there's no way the bank should have been able to catch me, and yet it seems they did. Did I do something wrong, or is there always a not-too-small chance that the target gets "lucky" and discovers you even despite your best efforts? Is there any way to trace the source of my discovery, post-mortem?

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I feel like it's possible to get caught even after you've completed a job - so there's a possibility you got caught for something you did previously. It's been a while since I played though. – agent86 Jul 24 '12 at 14:35
@agent86 that's true as well, especially if one hasn't used a level 4 log deleter – Zommuter Jul 26 '12 at 19:15
up vote 4 down vote accepted

Four to five bounces should really be enough, especially if they contain servers you currently have admin access (cracking the password without login is sufficient to do so for a brief time), or banks you have user accounts on.

Did you use the highest level log deleter? Lower level actions can be undone by a high level undeleter, which a bank will have.

The only other way to get caught I can think of is that you used the opportunity to withdraw some money from the account you spied on - the transfer to your banking account will leave a log in the bank computer which can be traced back to you unless you delete the log both on the source and the target bank (which is why you should have an account on the same bank).

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I didn't transfer any money this time. I just checked the details requested in the mission. At this point though, I only had a level 1 log deleter. Unfortunately (unless I'm missing something), the game doesn't seem very good about filling you in on new software requirements or usage as you go. – Iszi Jul 24 '12 at 18:12
There's your problem then, the only log deleter that is truly safe is the level 4 one, all others can be reverted by a sufficiently high log undeleter. My strategy in a new game is getting as much of a loan as possible to buy just that, then do enough missions to afford the best trace tracker... – Zommuter Jul 25 '12 at 18:12

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