Friday, August 31, 2018

Spammers at it again! & Password management!

Just when I thought things had settled down here they go again. I took a conscious effort to unsubscribe to all the junk and spam emails I had been getting for a number of years and it worked, for a while that is. I've been trying to track why this happens. From what I can tell, whenever I subscribe to a new website soon after is when it starts. Either these websites are selling data or spammers are scraping the sites for emails. This has to be a hard way to do business. Most people see this junk and just delete it. I used to just ignore it and let it fill up my inbox or spam folder. But, doing so does not do a service to your email provider as they have to keep adding storage or hard drives to their network to keep these messages or emails for you. This can lead to more expense and it is all passed on to the customer, either commercial or individual. Yes, email is free for the most part but your provider will serve you ads more and more the larger they grow. You think that you or I do not make much of a difference if we delete junk emails or not but if you really think about it, we do matter. I am going to keep up my research on this and post my results here. Oh, another was spammers get your email is from the breaches that we read or hear about almost weekly now. Who was breached lately? I cannot keep them all in mind as it is getting to be a normal part of life now. I am getting into the habit of quickly changing my password anytime I read of hear of a breach. So, how do you keep up with all of your passwords? I hope you are not using the same for all websites. That is the absolute worst thing you could do. A good habit in my opinion is to use some type of common theme, something that you can remember. Making the passwords longer than eight characters is the norm now. Then you have two-factor authentication where you are texted and have to input the code that is sent to your phone. Maybe you do not like that extra work though? I particularly have welcomed that method as the websites are going the extra mile to make sure you are not hacked. If you want to take on the full task of password management you can find a password manager like I did years ago. First, do a search for password managers. They are all different and each have their own interface and method. One thing I can tell you is that I have found that open source programs are excellent. This is where groups of programmers are sharing the responsibility of maintaining and improving the program. I settled on a program called, Keepass. Do a search for it. There is regular updates and more than enough options that you or I will never use but it works well. I have been using this for several years now without a hitch. It is free but you can donate to the group or cause if you like. There are even extras you can get to add to this program. One that I found that was a welcome relief is a sync app or script program that allows you to sync or make a complete copy of the data file into a Google Drive file. I have been using this regularly now the last year and what makes it great is that you can get at your password data from anywhere, even on your phone. I should have broken this up into two separate posts. I might do this another time. ...and life goes on!

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