Enough people have written in that it’s time to suspect more than one thing is going on with reports of people not being able to get today’s version of UrbanSurvival on time.
At the same time, since we spend so much time on the net, a good chunk of UrbanSurvival is knowing what the hell you’re doing with a computer is high on our priority list.
So we’re going to have us a short class here where I’m sure, even if you THINK you know all there is to know, you just might learn a thing or three.
It’s appropriate we talk about safety of home computers because home (or office) your computer is either your best bud or it’s the biggest most gaping personal security exposure you have.
The starting point is simple: Open your browsing history any time you want by pressing CONTROL+SHIFT+DELETE at the same time. Go ahead…try it. Look for the part where it refers to passwords.
Given the number of meth-heads out there, is it worth using your BRAIN to store a few critical passwords, in order to keep your computer safe?
You know, if someone steals your computer – and you use all those features like stored passwords – you could lose your life savings. And you do go to the store, right?
I got started on this morning’s rant because so many people have been getting old UrbanSurvival content. That seems to be happening FAR too often, so it’s likely a software update. So let’s get this fixed, once and for all, shall we? This is going to apply to ALL websites, but it’s pretty clear that if you’re a big corporation and you want to lessen traffic on the net, just feed people old content.
Well, we’re not going to play…
Yes, we are still on exactly the same Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday schedule as always with links to Peoplenomics (and summaries) on Wednesday and Saturday. So what gives?
Hard telling – although we know that there are groups that really like to suppress our views…but aside from this, there are a couple of things you can do. And what I’m going to show you here will help on ALL sites that have updated content.
We’ll start with Internet Exploder, as I call it. When you get there, look for the area under browsing history.
To get here, find the menu, look for “Tools” and click on the settings for how pages are handled.
I make it a practice to ALWAYS set the “Delete browser history on exit is checked. I don’t want anyone to EVER see where I have been. No, not that I visit porn sites, or anything like that…it’s that I don’t care to leave any personal information on any computer. (I don’t do things like store passwords either.)
Next, you click on the area called “Settings” which I have poured yellow over so you can find it.
Now, you want the browser to be set so that you get a fresh copy of everything “Every time I visit a web page.”
If you don’t have these things checked, you will be seeing ever so slightly faster – but oftentimes DATED material.
If all you do is look at your bank statements and such, then fine. But just remember, burglars are not dumb.
If they can get into your how and steal your computer and if you don’t have a STRONG logon to your computer, They can email a password change to your old email address, put in a new email account, logging in from a hotel somewhere (and using a fake ID for that) and have a field day.
More on this in a second.
Same thing when you are using Firefox, if that’s your poison of choice.
Simply open up your Tools (right click and check the Menu on if it’s not already on your screen).
Then from the pull-down that gives you a number of ways to handle history, select the one that says Firefox will never remember history.
Set Up a Computer Sign-In
Now, a word, or three about User Account access.
A lot of home computer users are too damn lazy to set windows up to that it takes a serious password to log into it.
Let’s see how good you really are at computers, OK?
Go over to the Gibson Research (remember, Steve Gibson is a nice computer genius) and check out his Password Haystack over here.
Put in something LIKE your banking password and let me know how you do. But, don’t put in the real thing, just something that has the same number of characters and is upper/lower case, has special punctuation and some numbers in it.
You know why the odds of me losing my bank account and other personal information is low?
Look at the password needed to log onto any of George’s computers:
And THIS is just to log into one of my computers. I won’t bore you with the even more hardened passwords for banking and trading, but you get the idea.
There are some computers around here which are never used for banking, website work, or any of that…Take Elaine’s computer.
But that computer (seven letters, 2 numbers) is incredibly insecure by comparison.
Even our media computer – which doesn’t have a single commercial application on it – still requires a password to log in.
As you can see, it’s dirt simple and it’s really a joke.
Why Passwording Your Computer is Important
I am NOT the character who James Spader plays in Blacklist, BUT if I were, just stealing a computer could be turned into something.
For example, there’s a marvelous piece of software (if you ever misplace your product CD for some computer application, or other, called “Magic Jellybean Key Finder.”
I’ve run it on my most “stripped down” machine, and sure enough it tells you a fair bit about what apps are on here Obviously I’m not showing product keys, but there they are…
What it doesn’t show is custom code (Nostracodeus uses a different approach, for example) but these tools are out there. If you haven’t seen it, the LifeHacker report over here could bed used by a smart criminal (who has stolen your computer) to get into all kinds of mischief. You don’t really want to make things easy for them, do you?
All of which gets down to the point of this morning’s major rant bottom line: A lot of people think they are smart when comes to computers. But having a computer that doesn’t have strong passwording from logon forward is taking an unnecessary risk and one that is easily fixed.
People tend to put off boring stuff with computers. Running Defragler or CCleaner to wipe out temp files and speed up things is ever so boring, too.
But in a sense, it’s not unlike sharpening a pencil. When I was a kid, I used to run up and sharpen my pencil almost compulsively.
Think of computer performance and security as the same thing: Pencil-Sharping 3.0.
Around the Ranch: Numerous Small Victories
Nothing has gone as intended this week, but what’s old saying about what the “road to hell is paved with…”?
The good news is that the passing crap is all dealt with – almost like an asteroid went by with Kryptonite or something.
Not like I’m the only one, though. Reader Dan has had the same thing going:
I thought it was just me. Yesterday I was speaking to my wife about a series of peculiar outages at work, miscommunications, and other stuff that was going on. She asked if it was already retrograde again and I confirmed it was not yet and that she should check with her astrologer for anything strange. So far nothing but I’m glad it’s not just us.
Here’s the interesting part: Reader RF says it’s not retrograde that’s working overtime:
It isn’t Merc Rx, George, it is Uranus/Pluto square and Solar eclipse, and whatever is being jiggled in our personal astrology charts by these energies.
I had ‘one of those days’ yesterday, too. Also three instances of ‘crap’ that rarely dogs me anymore.
My favorite go-to online astrologer has become Ralfee Finn of “The Aquarium Age — Transformational Astrology” at AquariumAge.com (yes — a q u a r i u m — she has a sense of humor). Her “Weekly Frequency” report gives an excellent overview of the astrological weather. She gives historical perspective, and does her best to find the silver lining in the storm clouds, or how to make the best of what is happening.