February 24, 2006
Dear CNET members,
In five more days, I will be welcoming my newborn into this world. While I'm not a new daddy, I'm reliving that exciting but nervous feeling all over again (dads out there; you know what it's like). With sleepless nights ahead of me and a lot of baby bonding to do, I will be going on paternity leave for three weeks. So what about the Community newsletters? No worries! I'm leaving you in good hands for the next several weeks with my coworker Marc Bennett, who has been an absolute blessing in helping me behind the scenes with these newsletters. And he will help ensure that the show does go on! So until I come back, please don't give him a hard time--only if you really want to. ;-) Now let's move on to this week's questions from Gary on passwords.
Gary, you have asked many great questions about passwords, and while people have varied recommendations this week, it is entirely a personal preference as to how we manage our passwords, whether we store them online with Web sites or on our browsers, use password utilities, or even just use pen and paper. I really like how Kasey, in our winning answer this week, put it: "The entire idea of security is balancing risk vs. convenience." So I hope with this week's answers you have a better understand of how passwords are stored and how you can manage them better. And members, if you have had your password hacked or have unique tips or a great way to create and store passwords, share them with your community in this week's discussion. Hopefully, armed with your experiences and tips, we'll all have a smarter and safer way to keep those passwords secure. Lee here--signing off on the Help and How-to newsletter to Mr. Marc Bennett. Take care and thank you all! See you when I get back!
Member Question of the Week
When logging in to a secure Web page, the browser will often have an option to save my password. Or the Web site will ask if I want to store my password. Are these the same? Where and how are these passwords saved? How secure is it to do this? Are the passwords stored in an encrypted format, and if so, can they be hacked? As a precaution, I never store passwords anywhere in electronic form. I don't trust password managers because there is no way to know what they are doing with the information. What is the safe way to
Well, Gary H., your question starts out simple, but goes quite a bit deeper into online security. Let's start with the difference between the browser's "remember my password" vs. a Web site's "keep me logged in" option.
Your browser actually saves your login name and password info, encrypted, on your hard drive, and fills the fields when you pull up that certain Web page again. However, how it saves it depends...
Kasey C. of San Francisco, California
efforts, we're sending him his choice of any
Help.com Learning CD.
Each week we take a look at topics discussed in the forums.
Leaving no traces on computer
Best regards and enjoy!
Member MYVISTA is going to donate his computer to charity but doesn't want to leave any information on it for others to recover. While many people may think that a basic reformat will do the job, some say it won't ensure that your personal data stays safe. So do you have any advice for our member to make certain that his personal data is completely deleted? If you do have suggestions, join us and find out what the best practices are for covering up your tracks on your computer.
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Is there ever a right time to buy a computer?
Member arrow_0042000 is unable to make up his mind whether he should buy a computer right now or wait a little bit longer so that he may get a better and more advanced computer--with the concern that it will be obsolete in a year or two. With that said, is there really a right time to buy a computer? Or would he just be waiting and waiting? If you have some advice for this member, he'd like to hear from you.
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Watch out for the Nigerian inheritance scam!
The world-famous Nigerian inheritance e-mail scams may be old, but they are still circulating--some unsuspecting people are still falling for it. So to better educate everyone, tell us how you determine what is a scam and and what is not when this type of e-mail comes your way. And if you have ever been coaxed into an e-mail scam, please share your experience with us so that we can all learn from it.
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Need an alternative to Dell for our
Member printnmail has been using Dell for many years, but after some unsatisfactory experiences with the company's support, he has decided to move on to other vendors. However, he's been out of hardware shopping for so long that he needs your help. Who can you recommend to
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Mac nugget: iMac G5 spontaneous restart
You hear about PC spontaneous rebooting a lot in the forums, but you don't hear about Macs doing the same. Here, member arrow_0042000 has a iMac G5 that randomly reboots itself, and he's having a hard time finding out why. Do you have any suggestions about where he can start looking for the culprit?
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Check out next week's question:
Hi! I've just retired and have much more time on my hands, so I'm trying something new. I'm fairly new to all this computer and Internet stuff, and I hear a lot about instant messaging as a great way to keep in touch with friends and family and to meet new people. How is this different from e-mail? Is it safe? What are the risks involved in using messaging programs? What are the best ones? Are they all free? If I decide to get one, I'd like to know my options before choosing. Thanks for any advice!
Julie K. of Roanoke, Virginia
If you have the answer,
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Location: Indianapolis, Indiana
January 31, 2006
|About me: About me: I'm a computer/IT guy in the Indianapolis area. When I'm not on the road doing computer stuff (or helping family & friends ...(read more)
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