Is Your Email Account Hacked? January 26th, 2014
Today, I received an email from a well-meaning friend asking if my email account had been hacked. He forwarded the original email to me, and it was immediately obvious that “Hacking” was not what was happening here. The appropriate word for what was done is “Spoofing”. My name was Spoofed. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Email_spoofing). To see the email I received, please see the bottom of this post.
What this means is that someone, somewhere got my name and used a bogus email address to send email to my friend – showing my name, but not from my address. This is a very important distinction. Had they used my email address, even with a DIFFERENT name, I would have been “Hacked”. I’d have to change my passwords and worry about my email account’s security. In this case, there’s nothing I can really do, but at least my information is safe.
I’m sure you’ve all seen emails like this. Emails that appear to be from friends, but are promoting something you KNOW your friend wouldn’t promote, or that has some wonky link in it.
If you’re wondering why this happens, there are several possible contributors to the cause:
1) Sending batch emails to dozens of people or strangers and CC’ing all the emails, exposing everyone’s names and addresses to everyone else. This is easily resolved by using BCC (for a tutorial on BCC, please visit my YouTube Channel: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1DunBSu6mL0)
2) Using BCC in your emails, but forgetting to remove the dozens of email addresses that had been forwarded to you by others who didn’t know BCC
3) (This seems to me to be the MOST prevalent) Keeping your Contacts (or Address Book) on a free email server – like Gmail, Yahoo, Hotmail, AOL and others. It’s not too hard for a hacker to access your information from there :
To support this idea, I can see that my friend received his email on his gmail account. My name is listed on his gmail account as a contact. The link and actual USED email address have something to do with cars. My friend is very connected with the car business and has likely been tracked as we all are, while doing some of his research.
Some articles blame social media, however I’m not among the people who believe that to be the culprit. My personal name is not listed in full, as used in this email on almost any social sites. In fact, the ONLY place this name is listed in this way is in Google+ (in which Google has endeavored to link everything Google to everything ELSE Google).
So, my suggestion is to stop using Free Email addresses on public sites. Now, I know that’s not going to happen, so here’s the next best thing. Check the email information – and look for the email ADDRESS from which the email was sent. If the listing is as it appears in the screenshot below – IMMEDIATELY delete the email. DO NOT CLICK ANY LINKS! Then, consider removing your friend’s name from a public listing on your free email account, and consider using BCC correctly in emails to protect the names and emails of your friends.
Oh – THIS is lovely! ProDesignTools.com has created a page dedicated to ALL the Help files for ALL the Adobe products, in searchable, discussable format! They’re even downloadable as PDF’s!
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Tutorial – Using the History Brush with Filters – Photoshop March 8th, 2012
When I don’t get a chance to make my own tutorials, I still appreciate the work of others. Graphics.com has posted a nice tutorial on using the History Brush to control where Filter Effects…um… affect your image. Check it out!
A Fun Poke at Some People’s Use of the Help Desk January 21st, 2012
My clients and students all know I love them – but also know that sometimes what we hear as technicians and teachers make us giggle a bit.
This clip, from a Norwegian show (with subtitles) depicts what those same people would experience in the Middle Ages. Funny!
Awesome HTML 5 Cheatsheets! December 28th, 2011
The hosting company who hosts all my websites (www.inmotionhosting.com) has posted a wonderful set of HTML 5 Cheatsheets! There’s one for Tags, One for Event Handler Attributes, and one for Browser Support.
Now, I know their images are TOO big to view clearly on my layout, so, to download them, go to http://www.inmotionhosting.com/infographics/html5-cheat-sheet/?utm_source=facebook&utm_campaign=infographics&utm_medium=InMotionHosting
Tutorial on the Painting with the History Paintbrush – Photoshop November 16th, 2011
Russell Brown (www.russellbrown.com) has created a really good tutorial on how to use the History Paintbrush in Photoshop.
Those of you who’ve taken my Photoshop classes know that I don’t often teach this tool. I actually think it’s an awesome tool – but of course I’m ALL about non-destructive techniques, and this isn’t one of them. This technique changes original pixels permanently (there are work-arounds, but they’re rather indirect). So, I recommend knowing how this tool works, what you can do with it, and then knowing you can use it for more of your “quick and dirty” retouching and repair needs.
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Live, Interactive Online Computer Training February 28th, 2011
Just a reminder: Our Live, Online, Interactive Computer Instruction is available for anybody, world-wide. Avoid the commute! No need to leave your computer!
Check out our website for more information, or contact us via email or telephone for more information.