As you probably know, last year some still-unknown criminals stole a whole bunch of credit and debit card data from Target. And the story keeps changing. First there weren’t any PINs. Then they got the PINs, but no personally identifiable data. Well, the latest news indicates they got credit card numbers, names, addresses, phone numbers, e-mail addresses, and for a whole lot more people, and probably from a longer length of time than just late November to mid-December.
There are a few things you ought to do if you shop at Target, which many people do. Continue reading Why the Target data breach news keeps getting worse, and what you need to do
Lifehacker has a great writing tip that I take for granted, but come to think of it, may not be obvious to everyone: When you’re in a groove, don’t interrupt your writing with research.
The groove is much too valuable for that. When the words are flowing effortlessly, ride it out as long as it lasts. It usually takes a while to find that groove, so just go with it. I usually won’t break a groove to edit, either. Just let the words flow. You’ll always be more productive that way. Continue reading Don’t research when you’re in a groove. Yes. That.
My battery life on my phone and tablet have been rather lackluster lately. So I decided to do something about that, and installed Juice Defender on both of them. Continue reading Juice Defender helps your Android battery life
Amazon just fired off another salvo in the e-book war, one that’s going to be very difficult to return: Selected e-books are available for free or at a substantial discount if you bought the print book new from Amazon at any time, dating back to 1995.
Of course, being an e-commerce site, Amazon has the data to do that. Barnes & Noble doesn’t, necessarily. Their records of in-store purchases will be spotty, at the very least.
It’s a fair and reasonable deal for consumers, and I think it’s a good deal for authors and publishers too. Continue reading Amazon bundles free/discounted e-books with print books
Whether Microsoft likes it or not, it’s turned into IBM. The biggest difference I see is that when Microsoft makes a mistake, it catches up with them much faster than the same mistake did to IBM.
But IBM’s biggest mistake was its adamant refusal to compete with itself. And that’s what Microsoft is going to have to avoid. Like Computerworld says, Apple says if you don’t compete with yourself, someone else will. Continue reading Now that Microsoft is IBM, it needs to avoid IBM’s big mistake
I haven’t written a lot yet about Mr. Edward Snowden and the NSA PRISM program. I will in time, but want to be careful not to be spreading misinformation, and not to merely be repeating what everyone else says.
There’s been no shortage of advice on encrypting your own data, but there is one pitfall to that. Continue reading What to do about PRISM is unclear as of yet
So, “Peggy” from “Computer Maintenance Department” called me again last night. This time I decided to mess with him a bit more. This is the second time.
(No, “Peggy” wasn’t his real name, nor did he identify himself as “Peggy,” but that’s the name I’ll use, thanks to that old Discover commercial.)
Continue reading “Computer Maintenance Department” called me again from India
The Consumerist posted five warning signs that a Craigslist rental listing is probably a scam. As a landlord looking on from that side of it, I generally agree with it.
I’ll explain things from a landlord’s perspective.
Continue reading A landlord’s take on Craigslist rental scams
Hackers are stealing Yahoo accounts by sending messages containing malicious web page links.
The message looks like a link to a web page on MSNBC. But if an unsuspecting user clicks on it, it redirects to another page that steals the e-mail account, allowing the hacker to use the account to send spam, or grab the account’s contact list.
The gory details are here.
Continue reading Beware of unexpected links in e-mail messages
John C Dvorak asks what war we’re waging on hackers. While war may not be the best choice of words, because it’s not exactly a conventional war, there’s no question there’s something going on, and we’re not winning it right now.
The latest salvo is that someone in China is building a botnet using Macintoshes. Continue reading Don’t call the war on hackers unwinnable