Diary of a Network Geek

The trials and tribulations of a Certified Novell Engineer who's been stranded in Houston, Texas.

1/25/2019

Phishing Quiz

Filed under: Fun,The Day Job — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Hare which is terribly early in the morning or 6:30 am for you boring, normal people.
The moon is Waning Gibbous

No, that’s not a typo.

This month, I’ve been dealing with a higher than normal amount of phishing emails at work. For those of you not in IT, those are the emails you get that have links which look like legitimate links, say to your bank, but that actually redirect you to a compromised website that collects your username and password for a hacker’s later use. They’re worse than regular spam email, but not quite virus payloads. Either way, they cause me no end of grief. Normally, I don’t have a hard time spotting them, but even I have to admit, these cyber crooks have gotten really clever lately.
So, this week I’m bringing you something rather more important and educational than it is strictly “fun”. Still, if you bear with me, and follow the link, you’ll be helping yourself and endearing yourself to your IT Department. Trust me.
The link is to Google’s phishing quiz and it’s meant to both test your knowledge and skill at avoiding phishing emails. As an IT professional, I can tell you, it’s harder than it looks. Honest. The first time I ran through the quiz, I missed three of the eight questions, though, one was a “false-positive”, which means I was leaning more toward safety by the end of the quiz. In any case, after you answer each question, the site takes you through what was wrong, or right, about each email.

So, yeah, not the most traditionally “fun” thing for a Friday, but it is a kind of game, so I’m going to count it!
And, with any luck at all, by this coming Friday, I may be finally able to reveal one of the things that’s been keeping me from writing up better stuff for you on Friday’s the past month or so.

 

This post originally appeared on Use Your Words.

9/7/2018

Burner Email Addresses

Filed under: Red Herrings,The Day Job — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Hare which is in the early morning or 7:00 am for you boring, normal people.
The moon is Waning Crescent

Because having a disposable email means having privacy.

I hate spam. I mean, I really hate spam and spammers with a passion. As a system administrator, which is what I really am no matter what fancy title I may currently have, I can tell you that dealing with spam is the single most time-consuming and irritating thing about having an email server. The last time I checked, spam accounted for something like 75% of all email communication. The problem is, a lot of the time, to get the one thing you want from a site, you are forced to sign up for an email newsletter that you don’t really want. Now, don’t get me wrong, I actually like email newsletters. I subscribe to several and I’m even working on setting up one of my own. But, for those times you really just want the one “free” download a site is offering and don’t have any intention of coming back, what are you to do? Or, what if you’re not even sure that it’s a legitimate download or website? Maybe you’re afraid that a hacker has set up a site just to collect personal information, what then?
Well, then, you use nBox by notif.me to setup a free, anonymous and private “burner” email for any site you want to sign up for. You can then choose how and when you’re notified when they send something out. You can even delete the addresses you’ve used for sites you don’t want to be bothered with any more and *poof* they’re all gone, all at once.
And, yes, it’s free. How? Well, it’s free because it’s notif.me’s way of advertising and getting the word out about their service.
So, why not try it and take control of your email notifications this fine Friday?

This post originally appeared on Use Your Words!

10/17/2014

Destroy All Robots!

Filed under: Fun,Geek Work,Red Herrings,The Dark Side — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Tiger which is terribly early in the morning or 5:56 am for you boring, normal people.
The moon is Waning Crescent

Or, at least, all robocallers.

So, lately, I’ve been digging through my files, finding links I saved ages ago to share with you, my few loyal blog readers, and I’m the first to admit that it’s been a mixed bag.  Some have been fun.  Some have been lame.  But, this one actually solves a problem for you.

Do you get automated calls?  Maybe you signed up for a catalog ages ago, or maybe you thought that timeshare in Miami was going to…
Read More

1/20/2012

Pioneer One – Crowdfunded Sci-Fi

Filed under: Art,Fun,Life, the Universe, and Everything,Red Herrings — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Tiger which is terribly early in the morning or 5:54 am for you boring, normal people.
The moon is Waning Crescent

I love science-fiction.

I love sci-fi in pretty much all its forms, but I have to admit, I especially like science-fiction television and movies.  And, these days, as Hollywood produces more and more of the same stuff over and over, unwilling to take risks, I find myself loving sci-fi television more.
Now, with cameras and equipment as reasonably priced as they are, it’s possible for small, independent film-makers to roll their own media, in both film and television.  Combine that kind of low-budget, but high-level of passion for production, with all the different ways people are funding their favorite projects and, well, what you’ve got is Pioneer One.

Now, I have to admit, I haven’t shelled out the money for it just yet, but go check out the trailer and tell me if you aren’t at least a little intrigued by what you see.  I know I was.  Kind of looks like the X-Files, but crossed with Operation Blue Book.  Seems like it might lead somewhere.
Oh, and they must be doing okay, because they’ve got six episodes now, so someone is coughing up the money to keep this worth pursuing for them.

In any case, it’s Friday, so why not at least check out the trailer?  You won’t be sorry!

12/20/2010

A Truly Honest Privacy Statement

Filed under: Criticism, Marginalia, and Notes,Fun,Fun Work,Geek Work,News and Current Events — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Tiger which is terribly early in the morning or 5:08 am for you boring, normal people.
The moon is a Full Moon

Websites lie.

There, I said it.
Well, I wrote it.  Anyway, you and I and everyone else with half a brain know that these “free” websites are paid for in some way.  Mostly, that way is advertising.  Sometimes, that advertising involves selling personal data that they’ve collected.  Oh, c’mon, don’t act so shocked.  You know it’s true just like I do.  The big showed us all that companies without a good revenue model will, ultimately, fail.  And, the best revenue model of all on the Internet is selling your data to advertisers.

The thing is, wouldn’t it be nice if they just admitted that up front?
Well, Dan Tynan over at IT World has a modest proposal; The first truly honest privacy policy.

Watch out, because I may just start using this on my sites!
But, I won’t warn you ahead of time…

6/27/2008

TypePad Marketing

Filed under: Criticism, Marginalia, and Notes,Deep Thoughts,Fun Work,Geek Work,MicroSoft,The Network Geek at Home — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Horse which is around lunchtime or 12:05 pm for you boring, normal people.
The moon is Waning Crescent


TypePadfromIntel

Originally uploaded by Network Geek

The folks at WordPress better wake up and take notice.

So, you probably know by now that I run this blog via WordPress. And, in the past, I’ve recommended the free blogging service provided by WordPress.com. Well, while installing software on a new PC I’d put together at work today, I saw the screen to pictured here. If you click the link and take a closer look at the screen, you’ll see an option to install a three month TypePad account. TypePad, like WordPress.com, has both free and paid accounts. So, this would give someone three months of the paid TypePad service.

I don’t know what this cost the folks at SixApart, who own TypePad, but this is some damn clever marketing, in my opinion. If this is included with every Intel motherboard sold… Well, let’s just say that I think it would get a lot of people trying this service and starting a paid account. It’s like Microsoft giving schools huge rebates and offering student editions for cheap to make sure that their software is what the fresh crop of workers are trained to use. It’s good marketing. At least, it sure seems to have worked well for Microsoft.

WordPress, are you watching this?


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