I'm a intern on an IT company. My manager made a purchase of 6 units of "things" (lets call object A) that is important for him to a project. He gave it to me and told me to store it and to not tell anyone of the company that object A ever existed on the company.

Along with these things, there were other things (lets call them object B) that came along and were to a co-worker. I initially thought what the coworker wanted was the 6 units of object A. However, he wanted the object B. So I stored the object A again and gave object B. My manager was around when this happened.

Yesterday I went to look where I stashed object A and found out that there were only 3 units of object A, and it should have been 6 units of object A. My first thought was that my manager took the 3 units missing, then I called him to ask. However, he said that he didn't take it, and the idea that it was missing annoyed him. I said that I would look for it.

Today I looked for it everywhere and didn't find it. I did what my manager wanted and told no one of the existence of object A, but it was kind of hidden in plain sight (there is nowhere in the room to truly hide something) and anyone with the keys could find and take it, if he opened the right doors, but no one would have any reason to do it.

How should this be handled? I could ask around, but this would break the first condition of not telling anyone of object A's existence.

Edit: Found it. No one died and all is well

  • 7
    1. Why does your boss not want anyone to know about A? Sounds sketchy to me. 2. Is it possible you accidentally gave your coworker some of A with B?
    – David K
    Oct 8 '15 at 18:30
  • 2
    Why so secretive? any chance do you work for John Edgar Hoover or CIA? Oct 8 '15 at 18:30
  • 1. Because if someone know its there much likely that person will want it 2. Perhaps, don't know how to ask it though Oct 8 '15 at 18:32
  • 5
    Are you sure the boss had not stolen it?
    – Ed Heal
    Oct 8 '15 at 20:05
  • 2
    @SomethingBrandNewAwful I'm curious, where did you find it? What happened to it?
    – Jack
    Oct 9 '15 at 17:05

The thing is if your manager ask to keep object A safe he also must provide for a locked desk or a safe box to keep it. Where only you and him have the key.

Looks like this is some expensive material so what is the point of say keep this on your unlocked drawer or hide under a box of papers?

Now you have to discuss this with your manager in how HE want it to be handled.

You can assume your responsability for the objectA-B mistake, but that doesnt result in the lost item situation caused by not having a proper storage arrangement.


Reading from your tag you are an intern and your manager has requested you for some reason to keep objects out of reach of your colleagues. Now, at this point some of these objects have gone missing, where possible the guilty is someone from the office.

This is the point where your manager has to do his work, obviously he assigned you this task and hoped it would be effective. It was not so and he should be informed and asked to act proactively to prevent the objects from going home or becoming unrecoverable.


It seems like you won't get around filing a written report stating that the A was lost.

Such a report should include how the A was stored, the timeframe in which the A was lost, who had access to the rooms where the A was stored, which measures you took to retrieve the A and which measures you didn't take and why.

Send the report to your boss and/or whoever is responsible for managing the A inventory in your company. It's then the responsibility of your superior(s) to decide which measures to take (like, for example, report the A as stolen and start a police investigation).

Should anyone get the idea that you might have to be made liable for the loss of any vowels, consonants and other characters in your possession, get legal council ASAP.

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