Recent Comments


Comment by RandiO on Over 1 Billion Passwords Stolen (August 29, 2014 11:50 PM)
Those who are paranoidly (and criminally) inclined, it is prime time to: *Cash out all of your savings and your bank accounts, *Buy an island home in ...
Comment by Bruce on Over 1 Billion Passwords Stolen (August 29, 2014 11:27 PM)
I think the point made by Joel Brown above is a good one. This excerpt from Bob's newsletter of 15th August seems to show that strong passwords aren't...
Comment by Marcia on Uninstall These Windows Patches NOW! (August 29, 2014 07:46 PM)
These updates were never installed on my Windows 7 laptop, but there is one that keeps trying to update now: KB2993651. It is supposed to be a replac...
Comment by james on Over 1 Billion Passwords Stolen (August 29, 2014 07:12 PM)
Bob, Thanks for all your insightful short stories over the years. SQL injection flaws in a website in 2014. I wouldn't even think that was possible w...
Comment by Chuck on Over 1 Billion Passwords Stolen (August 29, 2014 07:00 PM)
Proof that it pays to change your passwords often. A lot of Russians are thugs and are hated all over the world for their devious ways, not just cybe...
Comment by IanG on Over 1 Billion Passwords Stolen (August 29, 2014 06:19 PM)
Yes, Bob, I have changed 'some' of my passwords recently - like when eBay and PayPal requested it (and wouldn't let you log in using the old one). Bu...
Comment by Doc on Over 1 Billion Passwords Stolen (August 29, 2014 05:57 PM)
Bob -- And *I* remember the argument if calculators should be allowed in Stats, Chemistry and Physics classes over slide-rules. Then if they should be...
Comment by Jim on Over 1 Billion Passwords Stolen (August 29, 2014 05:09 PM)
Several months ago, g mail notified me that someone in Russia was trying to access my account. I changed my password to a much stronger one as well as...
Comment by bb on Over 1 Billion Passwords Stolen (August 29, 2014 04:32 PM)
Sorry, count me on the side of the skeptics. Sure, "Hold Security" was invisible a year ago and more-or-less before this disclosure; the respectable ...
Comment by Rochelle on Over 1 Billion Passwords Stolen (August 29, 2014 04:19 PM)
My PWs are all secure 15-character mixes of gibberish. I have five email addresses, registered at 175 websites. Surely one of those 420,000 sites is a...

Over 1 Billion Passwords Stolen

Russian cybercrooks have hijacked a mother lode of 1.2 billion unique username and password credentials. The New York Times did some quick math and noted, “that’s more than the population of China!” The thieves have also amassed a list of 500 million email addresses -- so should you be worried? Read on...

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Posted by Bob Rankin on August 29, 2014 | Category: Security


Geekly Update - 28 August 2014

Which button should you never touch on the dashboard of a 2015 Corvette? Can your computer's keyboard replace your psychiatrist? And can you hack traffic lights for fun and profit? Get answers to these burning questions, and the scoop on the latest tech news, in this edition of the Geekly Update. It's guaranteed to make you 146% smarter. Read, think and comment!

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Posted by Bob Rankin on August 28, 2014 | Category: Tech-News


Where is the Internet Fastest?

Are you getting the Internet speeds you’re paying for? How does your state or country stack up against others in terms of average Internet speeds? These are just two of many questions answered by Akamai’s State of the Internet Report for the first quarter of 2014. Read on...

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Posted by Bob Rankin on August 27, 2014 | Category: Reference


The Solution to NSA Snooping?

Thanks a lot, you dirty traitor, Ed Snowden. Even though the clowns in Washington can't decide if, when, or how to protect American citizens from the prying eyes of the NSA, FBI and CIA, Snowden's revelations have prompted several Internet heavyweights into taking action on Internet privacy while they dither. Here's what's going on, and how you can benefit from it...

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Posted by Bob Rankin on August 25, 2014 | Category: Privacy


Is Apple Spying on Your iPhone?

According to security researcher Jonathan Zdziarski, every iPhone, iPad, and all other iOS devices can be ransacked by Apple, the NSA, or hackers through remote-access tools “hidden” in the iOS operating system. These tools give a remote user full control of the device and the ability to download nearly every scrap of data it holds. But what's the truth? Read on...

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Posted by Bob Rankin on August 22, 2014 | Category: Apple-Mac


Geekly Update - 21 August 2014

Is there any new tech to extend the life of your smartphone battery? Will relaxed regulations on satellite imagery threaten your personal privacy? And is there finally a way to force your kids to answer when you call their cell phone? Get answers to these burning questions, and the scoop on the latest tech news, in this edition of the Geekly Update. It's guaranteed to make you 146% smarter. Read, think and comment!

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Posted by Bob Rankin on August 21, 2014 | Category: Tech-News


Beware the Fake Tech Support Scam

Have you received an unexpected phone call from a helpful customer service rep of Microsoft, or perhaps your ISP? I didn't think so. But many people have received calls from scammers posing as tech support reps, warning that their computers are infected with malware and offering help to fix the purported problem...

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Posted by Bob Rankin on August 20, 2014 | Category: Reference


Are You in a Mobile Phone Dead Zone?

It’s a minor nuisance to experience poor cellular reception as you pass under a bridge, through a tunnel, or between tall buildings. But it’s a much bigger deal if your home or office (or just certain rooms) are in such a “dead zone.” Here are some gadgets that can help to bring your cellular signal where you need it the most...

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Posted by Bob Rankin on August 19, 2014 | Category: Mobile


Uninstall These Windows Patches NOW!

On August 2, Microsoft began pushing out its monthly bundle of Windows security patches and feature updates via Windows Update. By August 5, hundreds of users’ PCs were failing to boot after being powered off; the infamous Blue Screen of Death appeared. Some tech-savvy users traced the problem to a handful of patches in the August 2 release. On August 15, Microsoft pulled the flawed patches from Windows Update and advised users to uninstall them. Here is what you need to do:

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Posted by Bob Rankin on August 18, 2014 | Category: Windows-7


The Problem With Free Wifi Hotspots

Coffee shops, restaurants, bookstores, airports, hotels, and other public places often provide free access to wireless Internet hotspots. But along with the freedom to move around while computing comes the danger of being digitally mugged. Here are some some simple tips you can use to make sure you're not broadcasting your business to snoops and hackers while using wifi hotspots...

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Posted by Bob Rankin on August 14, 2014 | Category: Wireless


Do You Need a Disposable Email Address?

Have you ever visited a website which required your email address to make a purchase, create an account or gain access to information? I'm sure you have, and in some cases you've probably done so hesitantly, thinking that you might be opening your inbox to a flood of spam. A disposable email address provide a handy solution to this problem. Read on to learn more...

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Posted by Bob Rankin | Category: Email


Geekly Update - 13 August 2014

Is Windows 8 an even bigger flop than Vista? Can you print your own bionic man for less than six million dollars? And are birds conspiring to poop on bloviating world leaders? Get answers to these burning questions, and the scoop on the latest tech news, in this edition of the Geekly Update. It's guaranteed to make you 146% smarter. Read, think and comment!

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Posted by Bob Rankin on August 13, 2014 | Category: Tech-News


HOWTO: Send a Mass Email

A reader asks: 'I want to send emails to a large group of people on a regular basis. But I've heard that if you do it wrong, you'll get tagged as a spammer, and your emails will never be delivered. What software or services do you recommend for sending email to a list of people?' Read on for the answer...

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Posted by Bob Rankin on August 12, 2014 | Category: Email


10 Stupid Things You Can Do To Mess Up Your Computer

Aside from actually drop-kicking it or smashing it with a sledge hammer, it's fairly difficult to actually break a computer. That said, there are a number of ways to render your computer just slightly more useful than a doorstop. Certain careless acts can cause crashes, freezes, painfully slow performance, loss of data or invasion of your privacy. Here's my list of stupid things you can do to really mess up your computer...

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Posted by Bob Rankin on August 11, 2014 | Category: Security


HOWTO: Get Free College Textbooks

Tution and fees inflict most of the pain of college costs, but the price of textbooks is especially galling to students and parents. Textbooks are notoriously expensive, and often are useful for only one semester. But a consortium of educators is making high-quality college textbooks available in free, open-source forms. Here's where to find them...

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Posted by Bob Rankin on August 08, 2014 | Category: Education




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