Saturday, October 15, 2016

Phoney Hacks

A couple of things on my mind at the moment are ...

Phones and Hacks.

I'm thinking heavily about updating my phone soon ... I currently have an iPhone 5 and because Apple want to force people to use the software versions they push, I can't update it. This means apps are gradually becoming unreliable and nonfunctional. The latest is the Vue cinema app, it can't get data since Vue downgraded their site with a new look which honestly ... isn't very good.
Let's talk about that ...

How come I don't want to update the software on my Macbook Air ? There are a few reasons actually but the biggest is that I'm rather attached to the iTunes DJ function that was removed after v10.7. Actually, a lot of things were removed after 10.7 most of which were to do with basic usability ... v11 and onwards are a mess.

Oh and the newer versions of iOS don't talk to 10.7 any more, so I can't update my phone.

Not just that, Apple updates are getting notorious for breaking things. Like changes to firmware making the laptops much slower. I hear the new MacOS Sierra breaks battery life by making the machine work too hard. I can well believe these stories because pretty much every time I updated iTunes on Windows, it would break.

So yeah - the phone is getting less and less usable with the apps, so it's getting near time to replace it.

Except I don't know what to get ... The elimination part is proving easy :

Not Apple, definitely not Microsoft for the phone.
Not Sony, the Xperia mini phone I had before failed as a phone (calls frequently being just static noise) and couldn't have its software updated.

Apparently not Samsung either now. I used to have quite a high opinion of Samsung products. They made perfectly functional tellies and monitors that just did what they were required to do and they did that extremely well. But ... their quality has been slipping lately. I think my current telly is contributing to the trust issues that my amp and bluray player have. My last monitor was ... not as good as it should have been. The AOC one is way superior. And then there is the Galaxy Note 7 debacle to top it all off ... I'm not mentioning what I read in an article yesterday but ... if industry people don't treat their people right, the customers suffer as poor quality and deliberate mistakes come in.

I'm currently thinking HTC but would prefer a Google Nexus. I don't think I can get a Nexus phone on my current mobile network though. The HTC is expensive too compared to the Samsungs. I may be forced to go to an earlier version of the Galaxy ...

Hacks ?

I've had a couple of warnings over the email today and odd behaviour from the Apple account ... They've only come from GOG and Apple so far but it's enough for me to start changing passwords.

GoG - a couple of 2 factor authentication requests. Bit odd as I don't think it is me initiating that.
Apple - Facetime ID. That could have been the laptop doing something strange.

What's also odd is that they have different usernames on the log in ...

Just what password to choose ! Most password systems are pretty crazy now. You have to beware of simple stuff like dictionary attacks where the cracker system will go through the dictionary trying to break in. Number and special character substitution tends to demanded. I like using recognisable words but to get around the dictionary attack, I use combinations. Like Hack4Evah. Mis-spelled words can be good too.

(I have never used Hack4Evah !)

So yeah - new phone soon and a few new passwords too I think. The important stuff like bank is kept safe behind all sorts of multifactor authentication. Most stuff I have online is protected by two or more factor authentication.

But I did get hacked once ... my Eve Online account was hijacked and the only way I could explain that was that the keylogger that captured the credentials got in through the people who run the game. Had to be ! It was the only thing that got hacked.

It'll be a little time until I switch the phone. I'm evaluating options at the moment.

Me ? I'm ok still. Hanging on in there somewhat until I go on leave in a week but still pretty good. My outsides are gradually reclaiming themselves, when I let them although there are some hold outs. I still have my hopes, although I'll go see that doc on my week off if I'm not happy with progress. Kinda want this outsides thing done now so I can move on and away from it.

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