I've been asked to get some info out of the database of a system we use. I've found what I'm looking for, but its left me... confused.
For some reason, the developers have the system storing text in an SQL Image field. I suspected this, but wasn't entirely sure, until I took the Hex output from my select statement, put it into a Hex to ASCII converter, and hey presto, it's exactly the kind of message I'm looking for.
What I'd like to know is: why? Is there some legitimate reason why someone would store text in an Image field?
Given the quite serious and private nature of these messages, the only thing I can think of is that someone was seriously mistaken in thinking that storing the text in an Image field would somehow make it more secure? Or is there really just something obvious I'm missing?
EDIT: Covered in the comments, but: At minimum, this text will occasionally likely include accented characters and such. Plus, my manager just let me know that the software was written using SQL Server 2000, or maybe even a version or two earlier. Possibly the simple answer is that there wasn't an analogue to nvarchar or similar back when it was written?