How hard is it to pen a blog post on the road, using nothing but my trusty Android phone? We’re about to find out!
I have a few minutes here at the Detroit airport, making my connection home to Louisville after a quick but productive visit today to the Federal Communications Commission in Washington, DC. But that’s a topic for another day.
Today, I wanted to introduce you to a great web site that covers just about everything the average person needs to know about privacy, and how to maintain one’s privacy online:
Now if your initial reaction is “but Tim, I don’t have anything to hide,” then you especially need to visit this site and at least watch the link to a fantastic TED Talk video that will hopefully disabuse you of that false notion. Please check it out.
If nothing else, at least scroll down to the section on Password Manager Software. We all have a ridiculous number of passwords, right? The technology is available today with blockchains and other recent breakthroughs to completely eliminate passwords. But they’re not quite consumer-ready today. So nearly all the companies and web sites we use today still require some kind of password. And chances are, unless you do this kind of thing for a living (or are married to someone who does, right baby?!), then you’re doing it all wrong. And as a result, you are putting yourself at great risk.
It’s easy to get lazy and choose a password that is simple to guess, or is a common dictionary word (in some language). Or a combination of words. Or you write it down. Or maybe you think you’re saving the passwords in some “sneaky” way on your phone. Or just as bad, you might be re-using some passwords you already have, and can remember. If this is you, you really need to get a password manager.
The basic idea is to use the password manager to generate strong, random passwords every time you need to create one. Then simply copy and paste the password when signing in. Of course, these days you’ll want a solution that’s available on all your devices. My personal favorite is KeePass, which is fully open source, and has versions available for Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, and for those of you who still haven’t seen the light, there is even an iOS app. You can synchronize across all your devices using a file sharing system like Google Drive or Dropbox.
That’s it! You know you need a better approach to password management. Make the commitment to get this done before you really regret it. If you are already using a good, privacy-focused password manager, then check out some of the more advanced tools on privacytools.io.