Corona Contingencies and Compromised Accounts
Getting Ready for Remote Sessions
I know that the coronavirus and its potential impact on our lives must be on your mind. I’ve been reading stories like people in Milan going through a “psychosis,” to people stocking up on dry foods, to toilet paper being sold out. I’m trying to stand on sensible ground and not join a feeding frenzy. I think it’s important to look for teachable moments in history too. Let’s look back to how we responded to the H1N1 swine flu in 2009. 1,000 people in this country died. I don’t remember the mood being quite like it is now. Nevertheless, I acknowledge that if there comes a time when we won’t be going out as much and resort to working and handling other business from home — reliable technology will be more important than ever. I think most people know that I have provided remote consultations for years. I don’t really see text message as effective for this purpose, but I have been known to provide consultations by email such as answering a list of questions you may have or giving some analysis. Phone based consultations will also come into play. Commonly, I will tap into your computers via software that allows you to share your screen with me. For this, I use Quick Assist an application that is already built into Windows 10. With my Mac clients, I use Skype (preferred) or also the free version of Team Viewer. If you are a Mac client of mine, and you do not have Skype or Team Viewer installed, you can install them from Skype.com or TeamViewer.com . However, I know that installing software is not a comfortable spot for some of you. And, installing software on the Mac has gotten a little more complicated as of late. Therefore, if you are a Mac client and need one of these applications installed for our remote sessions — even if we don’t have an upcoming appointment scheduled — I will come and do it for you at no charge when I am in your area. It will take me all of 5 to 10 minutes. Please ask. For remote sessions, I bill by the half hour on a per incident basis. So when you have a concern that is worth it to you, don’t hesitate to reach out for remote assistance whether by necessity or by choice. Also for these remote sessions, there is no need to send me a check. I can take your credit card over the phone or send you a digital invoice.
It has come to my knowledge that many credit cards and banks are now offering “dark web monitoring” or some type of scanning where they can detect if your credentials have been compromised on the internet. Services like Life Lock do this on a paid basis. Some clients have shared information they were given with me and it seemed hard to decipher. One of them was simply told that an email address was compromised on a couple of occasions in recent months. It was not immediately clear whether there was an intrusion on the email account itself or a website that the address was used to sign up for. I have access to a well known database where I can look up where your identity (based on email addresses) has been compromised and tell you what sites and services were breached. It does not take long to look up this information. Some of the information found may be actionable and other bits may not, but at least you will be informed. Knowledge is power. A “compromised account search” would be a great activity for a future appointment that we have. Let me know.