I don't believe this is the right way to do things, and really, anything you
"break" can be spotted, fixed, patched and repaired.  Sure, it might piss
them off for a few days, but it aint a solution.

1. Do you have an agreement with the client in writing?  Who owns the
copyright of the code?  Who pays what and when?  What warranties are you
providing, etc etc?  If you don't fix it now.

In this case, you would be aiming to have copyright ownership of the code AT
LEAST until payment is received.

2. They should be willing to make part/full payment based on viewing the
working code on any server. If they want to see it working on their server
only, then perhaps suggest that you have control over the passwords until
payment... not a solid fix, but better than nothing.

3. In future, you should also aim for part payment (monthly, half-way,
deposit, milestones, etc).

I've had one client who hadn't payed.  I did everything right, kept
contracts, kept the FTP passwords, etc etc.  The bill was overdue by 15
days, and they were ignoring my emails/calls, so I pulled their site
offline.  15 minutes later, I received a phone call.  I explained my
position, and was payed within 3 hours.

The issue here is really who owns the code before and after payment.  In
conjunction with a written agreement / contract over what happens, when and
how (and how much), you should have no reason to really worry.  Having
written agreements out there also reminds the client of their obligations.

It may cost a few $'s, but you will be able to pursue a client who hasn't
payed IF you have a written agreement, and clear conditions.

The copyright act, and a clear contract are your best safeguards.  If
they're not willing to agree to simple, industry-standard practices, then to
me, the client isn't worth having.

Justin French

on 07/05/02 6:19 PM, PHPCoder ([EMAIL PROTECTED]) wrote:

> Hi
> I have a funny request; I wrote a system for a client and am rather
> concerned that I am not going to receive payment for the work done. They
> want me to hand over the code before they are willing to pay, so
> basically I will be left at their mercy; if they don't pay, they will
> still have a working version of the system...
> So, is there any way I can inconspicuously code in some boo-boo's that
> are time related etc. Something that will bomb the mysql tables or break
> some code if it is not "unlocked" within a month etc.
> I'm not sure if people out tjere might have existing safeguard tools
> etc, so I'm open for suggestions.
> PS, I know about Zend's encrypter, but since it will live on their
> server, I don't think it will help much since they will need the
> decrypter on there anyway right?
> Thanks

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