Morning Coffee – 18 July 2021

by Nate Hoffelder

After a decade of running The Digital Reader, Nate is a veteran web publisher with experience in design, maintenance, recovery, and troubleshooting. What little he doesn't know, he can learn.

July 18, 2021

Here are a few stories to read this Sunday morning. But first, I want to pass on one of my security nightmares.

Many marketing experts will tell you that you should get your own domain and set up a branded email ([email protected], for example). That is a good marketing and branding tip, but here’s a tech and security tip:

Never use that email address to set up an account – not on Amazon, not anywhere.

The reason I say this is that if you use [email protected] on, say, your Amazon account, and then you let the domain registration for MySite.com expire, anyone who then registers the domain will start getting your emails, including account status emails. (It’s like someone registering your old phone number, and getting your calls.)

I know this because I like to register expired domains which used to belong to now-dead companies, just to see what happens. I get all sorts of emails via those old domains, including for Twitter accounts, Paypal, and what have you.

  • For a while now I have been getting emails from Paypal related to an account which used to belong to the Dutch ereader company, Irex. (I can’t access that account due to the increased security, but still! )
  • I also now control the Twitter accounts created by several dead tech companies.
  • Last night I even got an security confirmation email for someone’s Amazon account. Yes, I could access their Amazon account and order stuff if I wanted to. (This scares the shit out of me, too.)

Folks, I am never going to do anything bad with the email accounts I control, but the next guy isn’t as ethical as I am. If you have made the above mistake, you should go fix it now. Go into your accounts and replace any [email protected] with, say, a Gmail account.

And now that I have scared you, here are a few stories to read this Sunday morning.

P.S. If you found this useful, may I suggest that you sign up for my weekly newsletter. https://sendfox.com/natehoffelder.

P. P.S. My weekly link post was the unfortunate victim of a scheduling conflict last week. I drove to, exhibited at, and drove home from the Imaginarium con in Louisville Thursday through Sunday. Nine hours of driving each way sucked the life out of me, leaving little energy for anything else. All my work got put off, including my link post. (Plus I forgot to bring what I would need to work on the link post during the quiet periods at the con – my iPad.)

Hi, I'm Nate.

I build and fix websites for authors, and I am also a tech VA. I can build you a website that looks great and turns visitors into fans, and I can also fix your tech when it breaks. Let me fight with tech support so you don’t have to.

My blog has everything you need to know about websites and online services. Don’t see what you need. or want personalized help? Reach out.

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