Learn to Love Your Devices, Including Your Brain.

The Second Real Post – Hacking

SilverBear Custom Image

“Hacking” in some form or other happens to just about everybody at some point! It has happened to me and it has happened to very experienced web and security professionals, as I discovered in chasing down what had happened to me. The best you can do is try to minimize the damage that will be done. I learned of my damage when I received a blackmailing email that threatened to expose my questionable online activities unless I paid 400 Bitcoin to a link that was embedded in the email. Fortunately there are no questionable activities to expose.

The email contained my oldest existing email address (which is now gone) and a previous password which I hadn’t used for several years. I learned that the address and password had been stolen in an attack on some website to which I had previously subscribed. Email (or username) and password combinations are offered for sale in lists after they have been stolen.

I replaced the old email address with a new one (a bit of a process with notifications and log-in changes) and reviewed all of my current passwords to ensure that they all meet the following policy.

A couple of years ago after making myself more familiar with web security I created a new password policy for myself.

  1. I never use the same password on multiple sites;
  2. My passwords are between about 16 and 24 random characters, generally as long as a website will accept;
  3. I use a password manager to remember these for me and use a long, complex but memorable password for that;
  4. I have my computer, phone and tablet set to sleep after a short period of inactivity and to require a complex password for reawakening;
  5. I change my passwords at random intervals – the password manager generates long, difficult passwords;
  6. I check the strength of my collection of passwords with a utility in the password manager and last time I checked they were in the top 10%.

Frankly, it’s a bit of a pain sometimes, but it’s much less of a pain than discovering that someone has found a viable password combination and used it to steal from me.

The First Real Post

Owl with laptop

Some of this post forms the basis of the About SilverBear Consulting page.

First and foremost. This site is primarily aimed at a very small segment of the world. Primarily it is meant to serve learners (and everyone is a learner in some aspect of their life) in the Capital Regional District of British Columbia, Canada.

Once upon a time the world was populated with things that worked in a way that was reasonably intuitive to the end user. People who were born and raised during that time are now faced with things that could just as easily work by magic as by technology. The successful approach to coping in this new world is the same as the successful approach to problem-solving and coping with change. After the crying, yelling or whatever other outburst is done, we need to accept that over our lifetimes we have successfully and repeatedly learned new things. If we can take our brains as far back into out childhoods as we can manage we can access that part of our lives when learning was our first and foremost task and the joy of our lives.

If you can you remember that time, bring as much youthful enthusiasm and wonder as you can muster to the tasks of learning how this digital world works. It is not the world we envisioned as we were growing up, but it’s the one we have and we need to learn to succeed in it.

First Post

silverbear-studios.ca) with the previous iteration of this site so I needed a placeholder post. The featured image is just one of my photos that I really like. If you like it, pop over to the photo site and take a look around. In the meantime I will rebuild this site in its own image. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Donec magna massa, lacinia ut maximus a, fermentum hendrerit urna. Suspendisse venenatis nunc in elit ultrices, sed pretium ligula scelerisque. Sed dapibus tempus aliquam. Ut convallis scelerisque velit vitae hendrerit. Sed eleifend sem in nisl consectetur, nec ultrices enim venenatis. Sed eget erat fringilla, ultrices nisl id, consectetur elit. Aenean vulputate nisl ac sapien tristique feugiat. Sed viverra ipsum eu leo rutrum, in gravida lorem hendrerit. Aenean condimentum dolor non ipsum elementum porttitor. Proin mattis nibh quis ante faucibus fermentum. Vestibulum ante ipsum primis in faucibus orci luctus et ultrices posuere cubilia Curae; Proin in cursus massa. Pellentesque ultricies enim a nisl ultricies vulputate. Cras accumsan ac magna et euismod. Suspendisse sit amet diam nulla. Aliquam sem mauris, imperdiet eget enim sed, pretium malesuada arcu. Morbi sit amet velit justo. Vivamus auctor aliquam vulputate. Curabitur semper tempor maximus. Nunc sagittis sem risus, id varius augue luctus non. Ut quis massa posuere, accumsan ex vel, pulvinar sapien. Curabitur sed pulvinar ipsum. Vivamus lacinia nunc in quam tempor pulvinar. Nulla placerat, felis id cursus laoreet, dolor magna varius turpis, in dictum nulla mauris vehicula tellus. Mauris facilisis vehicula malesuada. Proin quam ipsum, volutpat nec leo quis, porttitor vehicula neque. Interdum et malesuada fames ac ante ipsum primis in faucibus. Sed ex lacus, consectetur ornare fermentum sed, mollis vitae leo. Etiam libero leo, iaculis non velit ac, viverra ultricies ex. Duis nec enim rutrum est fermentum elementum. Duis dictum hendrerit magna, non euismod nisi tempor sit amet.]]>

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