Too Many Passwords

Are you like I was…  too many passwords for too many things, and seemingly no way to possibly remember them all?


About 6 months ago, while attending a seminar, someone turned me on to a great way to not only remember every single password I had… but also, an even better way to take my passwords with me everywhere I go and not store them on ANY computer.  Not my own… not any I use someplace else.  And all I have to remember now is ONE password.


If this sounds like you (Too Many Passwords – and can never seem to remember them all)… then read on….


Many people know they should create good passwords, but they don’t really know what a good password is.  Even worse, good passwords are usually hard to remember, which makes it less likely people will use them.


First though, what’s a bad password? A bad password is something that is easy for a thief to guess. Your pet’s name, your birthday or anniversary, or your children’s names are all examples of bad passwords.


Conversely, a good password is hard to guess. What are examples of good passwords? TRge34egT97 and 302t8R!9G}54 are examples of good passwords.


Totally random passwords are best. You can get a random set of characters to use in a password here:


The problem, of course, is that there is no way to remember a random set of characters. 


My VERY STRONG SUGGESTION is that you use a program like RoboForm to keep track of your passwords.


Before you go downloading RoboForm, (yes, you can download it for free), my suggestion is, go to your local office supply or computer store and purchase yourself a 1 GB Flash Drive.  You know.. the small little drive that you can even attach to your keychain if you want to.  Then, download RoboForm to the little Flash Drive.  This is a USB drive that you can then take with you where ever you go, and you ALWAYS have all of your passwords right there on the drive.


No more writing down passwords on a piece of paper (oh yeah, that’s REAL secure!) and no more having a list of passwords stored on your computer someplace (even worse!)


I have literally HUNDREDS of passwords for various different things.  A different password and user name for every website, every blog, every bank account, every site that asks me to register… I may even be approaching a THOUSAND different passwords now.  But I only have to remember ONE.  I am a VERY HAPPY CAMPER!


You can also put your passwords in an encrypted file on your computer. One possible program that works on the PC is TrueCrypt.  However, putting your files on your computer, even encrypted, is still not (in my humble opinion) as safe as storing them all on their own flash drive.  And the best part is.. when I travel, I simply take my little flash drive with me… plug it in to any computer’s USB port, and walla…. I have all of my log in, passwords, and web form data, right there with me.  I’m able to access any website requesting my password, without worry that typing my user name and password on someone else’s computer, could be stolen or logged using something like a keylogger program.  Because every single password is safely stored in RoboForm on my flash drive.


Similarly, you can find a shareware or freeware program on the Mac:


One important caveat: you will still need one password that you DO remember to access RoboForm or TrueCrypt. So, create one good, secure password you’ll remember for RoboForm, etc. and then you can use random strings for your other passwords.


I have been using RoboForm for about 6 months now… and I STRONGLY recommend you try it.  I’m betting you’ll be like me… and wonder how you ever survived without it.  The download is free for the basic install… but if you need unlimited numbers of passwords and webforms, you may want to upgrade to the Pro Version.  I started out using the free download, but upgraded to Pro a few days later when I realized how great this little utility is.  RoboForm2Go runs directly from your USB flash drive, no need to install on client computer; one license per USB disk is $19.95.  Best $20 I ever spent!




Dealing with Digital Disease

Dealing with Digital Disease

A virus is a program that replicates itself. It cannot exist on its own so it attaches to another program, usually an executable one. A worm is like a virus—it also replicates itself. However, it can stand on its own and does not need another program to run. It usually infects your computer’s networking features, which includes its internet connection.

Spyware and adware go hand-in-hand. Spyware is a kind of program which gathers information, specifically browsing habits. It tracks down what kind of sites you visit, and the adware will generate ads that fit with your interest which the spyware based on information it gathered in the first place.

Malware is malicious software. It’s any program that is useless, or worse, destructive. A Trojan a program pretending to be good but once it’s deep in your system it proves to be quite the opposite.

In spite of all their differences, they have one thing in common: they are out to give you headaches by rendering your computer unusable.

To protect your computer as much as possible from being infected, here are four dangerous activities that you should avoid, or at least minimize:

• Opening email attachments
Do not open any email attachments if they aren’t scanned by antivirus software. Worms can spread through email, so even a friend can unwittingly send you one by way of an attachment.


• Internet File-sharing
In file-sharing via the internet, your computer is exposed and open to others it is communicating with. If other computers’ files can be transferred to yours, the same thing can be said about a virus, if the others are infected.

• Downloading free software of questionable origins
Free software is free for a reason. If you bothered to read the End User License Agreement (EULA) of a software you are installing—which you probably didn’t—you most likely will come upon a short and tiny clause saying that if you agree to the terms, you are allowing advertisements to pop up on your screen, or other software to be installed in your system. So be careful with what you download. Read product reviews and find out if other people got headaches from using it.


• Visiting ad-heavy sites
If you visit a site and you’re immediately bombarded with pop-up ads, leave immediately. You might click on an ad that activates an automatic download of malicious software to your computer.

Here is a list of activities which you should be doing instead:

• Invest in good antivirus software. Going online without the protection of antivirus software is like going out naked in the snow. That’s just how vulnerable an unprotected computer is.

• Most antivirus software packages include an internet security program (also known as firewall). A firewall acts as a barricade between you and unwanted content from the internet. When buying antivirus software, it’s better to shell out for the internet security as well.

• Once antivirus software is installed in your computer, keep it updated always so it can recognize and remove newly released viruses.

• Whatever browser you are using, check that its security settings are all in default unless you really know what you are doing.

• Periodically delete files that you no longer use.

• Download spyware- and adware-removal tools and run them at least once a week. Be warned that many of these removal programs are a scam, so make sure that what you download is reliable. You can easily search for product reviews to check if the program is legitimate or otherwise.

• Back up all your important files all the time.

• If possible, have two computers at home. One will be used to connect to the internet, and the other should not be connected at all. The second computer will act as storage of all your important files so that even if the first one crashes, your life won’t be in ruins.

Don’t be dependent on removal tools and antivirus software packages, though. A bit of prevention is always worth a megabyte of cure.

Have a great weekend!



Watch Out for Phishing Scams

This is just a reminder to be on your guard at all times for Phishing Scams that try to bait you in to giving information about yourself or your security.


One that seems to never stop is the Pay Pal scam.  (No wonder.. look how many Pay Pal accounts there are worldwide!)  It looks something like this:


Your Billing Information! 


Dear PayPal Member,
It has come to our attention that your PayPal Billing Information records are out of date. That requires you to update the Billing Information.
Failure to update your records will result in account termination. Please update your records within 24 hours. Once you have updated your account records, your PayPal session will not be interrupted and will continue as normal. Failure to update will result in cancellation of service, Terms of Service (TOS) violations or future billing problems.
You must click the link below and enter your login information on the following page to confirm your Billing Information records.
You can also confirm your Billing Information by logging into your PayPal account at http://Don’tClickTheseLinks!

Thank you for using PayPal!
The PayPal Team


Just use common sense folks, and remember, Pay Pal, eBaby, nor any bank, will EVER ask you to update your account via email.