Your internet connection, web sites and services.
Internet and Web
Louis has a Wordpress blog and wants to know what the best option is for backing it up. Leo says that if his ISP or blog service doesn't offer a backup, then he's on his own. There are Wordpress plugins that do this and Leo uses them as a second line of defense. It essentially backs up the Blog database and customization. It would let him know by email when it backs up and when it fails.
Betty is looking for a solar service that offers monitoring through her router. Leo says that it's common that services require a landline or internet access to monitor. Betty doesn't want an ISP because she uses 3G wireless for internet. Leo says that's the choice. Of course, she could get the cheapest possible internet service if she absolutely has to have it.
Facebook is facing a virtual revolt from members after they required mobile app users to download their messenger app to use the private message feature. Leo says the app requires a stunning amount of control over a user's phone including making phone calls and text messages on your behalf. The bottom line is, users would have to trust Facebook with their privacy and phone use, and as such, it's proven to give Leo the ideal excuse to delete the app from his phones. He'll just use the desktop app from now on.
Security expert named Alex Holden published a report this week saying that a Russian gang has stolen 1.2 Billion email passwords. Leo was initially skeptical, but he knows insiders who have seen the data and he's now convinced it's real. The reason he was skeptical at first was because he was charging $250 for people to check to see if they're on that list. The news was announced at the annual DefCon Hacker convention in Las Vegas.
Have you ever been in a flame war online? It happens when you're involved in a discussion on a controversial topic. Nick Bilton of the NY Times has written an interesting article on how to know whether or not you're getting into a flame war before it fully develops.
Andy forgot his password to his Yahoo mail account and he's having trouble resetting it. Leo says the process of answering the secret questions by going to the log in and then click "I can't access my account." You'll then be asked your secret questions. This is also a good idea to add second factor authentication so that when you do reset, it'll let you know via your cellphone. Try that as well.
JC has been requiring his customers to do off site backup. But the problem is, they're all backing up to him and his network! That's getting a bit pricey. He's been thinking about using BitTorrent Sync. Leo says it's an interesting technology which allows data syncs across all bittorrent users. But it's a leap of faith because nobody knows how it really works.
Johnny Jet took a bus this week and saved 40% by breaking down his trip into separate one way journeys. And bus travel between Buffalo and Toronto is a better than going by train. But he ran into bad wifi and a few "sketchy characters," so that's something to consider. Sit as close as you can to the driver. And many Canadians take a bus from Toronto to Buffalo in order to grab flights and save on air fare and taxes. Also, it's a good idea to scan your passport and put it somewhere like a thumb drive or online in Evernote. That way if you lose your passport, you can secure a copy.
Richard is having issues connecting to the Internet after cleaning out his computer. It's loaded with Windows XP and he can't download any browsers. Leo says that Microsoft stopped updating Windows XP and if he can't install something like Chrome, then there's a problem that worries Leo. He says he can go onto Google, but can't run Chrome, only Internet Explorer. Leo says that he can use XP online, but only if he's careful. Here are steps to protect yourself since Microsoft has stopped supporting XP:
Kevin Kelly, a longtime editor at Wired Magazine, wrote a post on Medium saying that the internet is really only just beginning. "You Are Not Late" is the title of the piece, and he says "Right now, today, in 2014 is the best time to start something on the internet. There has never been a better time in the whole history of the world to invent something."
You Are Not Late by Kevin Kelly…