Best of 2021

2021: Best of Security & Privacy

I’m going to start a new annual tradition for the last blog of the year: I’m going to collect my favorite security and privacy resources for the year. Not just my own stuff, but from all sources. I have a Resources tab that’s chock full of stuff, but this article will be the best of …

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Opt Out of Mobile Tracking

Your cell phone provider is also an internet service provider (ISP). Whenever you’re not using WiFi to connect to the internet, you’re using your cellular data plan. That means that your cellular provider has a front row seat to viewing everything you do on the internet. This mobile tracking includes all the apps you have …

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debit card

My Debit Card Was Hacked

It’s accepted wisdom that credit cards are more secure than debit cards. A credit card purchase is a loan – you’re not out any money until you pay your monthly bill. Therefore, fraudulent charges (if caught) have no financial impact. But with a debit card fraud, that money is already gone from your bank account. …

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best and worst gifts

Best & Worst Gifts 2021

[Note: see related podcast and see affiliate stuff at the right] [UPDATED: Jan 8, 2022] When I wrote up last year’s list, I didn’t expect we’d still be dealing with a pandemic in 2021. And yet, here we are. But the best gift you could give this year – to yourself and those around you …

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Firefox Suggest & Privacy

I’ve long recommended Firefox as the best browser for most people (read this article to understand why). All in all, I find that it’s both secure and private, and it runs on all major devices and platforms. But Google’s Chrome browser remains king of the hill, by a long shot. What you may not know …

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iOS 15 Security & Privacy Features

Apple just released a major update to it’s iPhone operating system: iOS 15. (Note that iPads will get many of these same features, too, from iPadOS 15.) As usual, there are tons of cool and useful features, but given my bailiwick, I’m going to focus on the security and privacy aspects. In this article, I’m …

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data breach

Massive AT&T & T-Mobile Data Breaches

This past week saw two huge data breaches with cellular service providers in the US. According to two different reports, up to 100 million T-Mobile and 70 million AT&T customers’ data has been stolen and is available for sale. While both T-Mobile and AT&T are still investigating, both breaches look pretty real and serious. Data …

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public Wi-Fi

Stop Using Public Wi-Fi

We’ve all come to rely heavily on access to the internet. Our smartphones, in particular, are mostly useless without it. Even games that have no need to connect to the internet to function still require access anyway (pssst: probably because they want to track you to make money). But we also have Kindles and laptops …

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Guard Your Digital Rolodex

Your phone number is arguably as strong a personal identifier as your social security, driver’s license or passport number. Once it became easy and free to “port” phone numbers to new land lines and cell phones, people stopped changing their number. Phone numbers have become a life-long unique identifiers. If there’s one non-governmental ID that’s …

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