I am secret Agent G

How neurotic are you about safety and security?

      I have written before about my neurotic parenting with DD and how I try very hard not to be Nemo’s Dad. But today I was thinking about online security.
     You all know I live online. I have a real feeling that it’s my ‘home’ I love to tweet and to blog. I like email, instant messages, apps to check things via phone, websites, the lot. But I am also very wary, and I like to think, security conscious.
      I do not bank online (except Paypal) so I am not easily swayed by Bank Phishing emails. And I’m amused rather than taken in by the ‘You’ve won the lottery’ emails (except once I had – it was only £10 though) and most of the “Dear friend I need your help with £1000000 I have in a bank in Nigeria” go straight to my Spam folder so I’m rarely troubled by them. (Oh and I don't post pictures of my credit card online either! Seriously people!!)
      But I hope I’m not complacent, I’m wary of all emails, I’ve sent money to people online (as either gifts or payment)  and only once have I been let down (a small item I paid for was never sent).
      I use Ebay, Etsy and Amazon and like most of you (I suspect) I’m pretty neurotic about passwords and password strength. I use a different password for each site, I follow advice from Sophos and test password examples at PassFault (go and give it a go! Though I’d use a ‘similar to your password’, not your actual password – just in case!) I use Gmail’s ‘Two Step Authentication’ and I have a phone lock on my mobile.
      I also try and remain fairly anonymous online. Partly because a quick google search for my name reveals……just me. I’m fairly unique it seems, ditto DD. So I rarely use my name online, nor an exact location. I realise a keen stalker could probably find most of it but why make it easy.

      I don’t play ‘What’s Your Porn Star Name?’ and the like since I realises that most of the questions were aimed at finding your ‘often used questions for when you lose your password on a website’ eg First pet, name of your road, a school.
      I don’t post my birthday online – why tell everyone I’m 45 TODAY when that reveals my date of birth – same for DD – after all she will be online long after I am and why leave a data trail for her to worry about.

 So, am I neurotic or sensible? And do you protect yourself on line or assume that the risk is small and not care. Any other tips you think I should know?


  1. Sensible, definitely. Not neurotic. I can't believe people post pictures of their cards! Herp derp.

  2. Anonymous14/7/12

    Absolutely right, you can't be TOO careful, my DD.

  3. Your post heavily influenced my decision to not publically annouce my new baby's name on the web.
    She will be known as Miss B and thats it, i'm sure I'll slip up occasionally but hey at least there wont be loads of personal stuff everywhere.

    1. I'm actually quite moved that my post made you act. Pleased too though. And congratulations!

  4. I remember what hapenned when Jeremy Clarkson published his bank details in his newspaper column as "None can do anything but put money into your account with that information"> As a Diabetic I was quite tickled when someone donated Five Grand on his behalf from HIS account! XD