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Re: Preventing Office Theft of Food and Other Stuff

eschaef wrote: Make some brownies dosed with methylene blue and wait for the perpetrator to freak out that they are peeing blue/green! Jack FFR1846 wrote: Bait the frig with innocent looking food. Use crabgrass instead of lettuce on sandwiches or perhaps some silk or plastic leaves. The plastic or ...
by Bob.Beeman
Fri Apr 04, 2014 11:54 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Preventing Office Theft of Food and Other Stuff
Replies: 77
Views: 5213

Re: IRS Website Certificate is Wrong.

I can duplicate your problem if I intentionally mistype the web address as https://www.irs.gov i.e. put an "s" after the http myself. I say "intentionally mistype" because I can't find any evidence that this is published anywhere as their correct homepage. I don't know of any go...
by Bob.Beeman
Wed Apr 02, 2014 11:32 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: IRS Website Certificate is Wrong.
Replies: 4
Views: 617

IRS Website Certificate is Wrong.

I was surprised to find that the IRS website has an invalid certificate. This puts all of us at risk for having evesdroppers see what forms we download and what we enter into various online calculators. Its amazing that nobody noticed this. Doesn't anybody here use https when visiting sites? And why...
by Bob.Beeman
Wed Apr 02, 2014 6:46 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: IRS Website Certificate is Wrong.
Replies: 4
Views: 617

Re: Telephone Harassment

Try using a "disconnected" tone as her answering machine message. This YouTube video contains the message for a disconnected number. These are tones that the telephone company uses to indicate disconnected or unassigned numbers. The idea is to prevent people and organizations from repeated...
by Bob.Beeman
Sat Mar 22, 2014 8:39 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Telephone Harassment
Replies: 36
Views: 5122

Re: best tips for passwords?

I was always a little dubious about the math there...assuming each character had to be randomly cracked, when you just as well could dictionary attack and just need 4 hits in the right order to nail correcthorsebatterystaple. I think you may be misunderstanding how hashes work. You cannot guess a p...
by Bob.Beeman
Tue Mar 04, 2014 7:40 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: best tips for passwords?
Replies: 141
Views: 8519

Re: Goodbye HAL

Every once in a while somebody asks me how powerful those old computers were. I have records that I have kept covering the past 32 years of a rather naive series of benchmarks of these old machines, culminating with my current iMac, purchased about 4 years ago. Note that the benchmarks were done wit...
by Bob.Beeman
Sat Mar 01, 2014 5:35 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Goodbye HAL
Replies: 35
Views: 2302

Re: What's your usual retirement day like ?

Today was typical: 7:15 - 11:15 AM Covered 1 Biology and 3 Anatomy and Physiology classes for a teacher who was ill at the local High School. 11:15 - 11:50 Lunch 12:00 - 12:45 Reset system passwords for students who were having trouble logging in on the school computers. 12:55 - 2:40 PM Covered 2 ho...
by Bob.Beeman
Mon Feb 24, 2014 6:07 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What's your usual retirement day like ?
Replies: 180
Views: 19579

Re: Another Social Security spin......

I tend to be a cautious person generally, and my male relatives have mostly died at ages between 80 - 85, which means that I may have a significant number of years to collect SS even if I wait until 70 to collect, which I plan to do. I can think of at least one scenario where it may make sense to ta...
by Bob.Beeman
Sun Feb 02, 2014 5:39 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Another Social Security spin......
Replies: 48
Views: 2954

Re: New email service provider needed

Buy your own domain. GoDaddy charges $10/yr. Buy email for $3/mo Don't dismiss this idea so lightly. People can learn. The advantages of hosting your email on your own domain via a web provider (icdsoft is mine) are many: Your emails don't go through Google's email servers (at least at your end). Y...
by Bob.Beeman
Wed Dec 11, 2013 12:28 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New email service provider needed
Replies: 58
Views: 3939

Re: Call Received with Deceptive Caller ID

I always look at the caller ID. If it isn't someone I know personally, I let it go to the answering machine. Occasionally I make a mistake with this and answer. Since I am on the "Don't Call List" my lawyer assures me I am safe in giving out misleading information. When I'm really annoyed,...
by Bob.Beeman
Thu Nov 14, 2013 2:32 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Call Received with Deceptive Caller ID
Replies: 46
Views: 3955

Re: Jack Bogle on CNBC

Say what you will about CNBC. They DO have Jack Bogle on occasionally. Further, their series American Greed is a wonderful expose of swindles and scams. The network justifies its existence by just this program alone. Episode after episode people who expect high returns coupled with low risk are give...
by Bob.Beeman
Wed Aug 21, 2013 9:37 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Jack Bogle on CNBC
Replies: 46
Views: 4920

Re: Rethinking 4% withdrawal article thoughts ?

The Trinity study does appear to be the origin of the "4% rule", but the first time I heard of something like it was in William Bernstein's excellent series of articles on his "Efficient Frontier" site titled "The Retirement Calculator from Hell". These are still worth ...
by Bob.Beeman
Thu Aug 08, 2013 3:02 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Rethinking 4% withdrawal article thoughts ?
Replies: 37
Views: 2958

Re: Staying in same company for long - any benefits?

I started working with an engineering company (Telecom and Computers) in 1967, right out of college. I worked there through several corporate buyouts until 2003, when the division ran out of money (the parent corporation was OK). The work was interesting and challenging and in the course of my caree...
by Bob.Beeman
Fri Jul 26, 2013 8:07 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Staying in same company for long - any benefits?
Replies: 27
Views: 2769

Re: Unsecured wifi

Very Clever Lady Geek.

But note that this page does not pose a threat to anyone, as it has no content. It will always have no content because the page won't load content over http:

Still, that's clever.

- Bob Beeman.
by Bob.Beeman
Fri Jul 19, 2013 3:14 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Unsecured wifi
Replies: 66
Views: 6037

Re: Unsecured wifi

Sites can FORCE you to use a secure connection. For example I use this for some things on my site. I DEFY you to get to the following page without being on a secure connection: http://www.bee-man.us/security_test.php Of course it only works if you get to the right place, but it protects people from ...
by Bob.Beeman
Fri Jul 19, 2013 2:55 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Unsecured wifi
Replies: 66
Views: 6037

Re: Any experience with Arbonne (scam?) ?

A long time ago my father heard a presentation for http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Holiday_Magic Holiday Magic at work and asked me to go with him to a presentation. It was a scam, and is often used today in law school as an example of a Ponzi Scheme. We took notes during the presentation and checked o...
by Bob.Beeman
Wed Jul 17, 2013 10:36 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Any experience with Arbonne (scam?) ?
Replies: 22
Views: 14754

Re: Ethical Implications of Index Investing

I wonder if there is another, possibly ethical, issue connected with Index funds. John Bogle has identified the replacement of "owners' capitalism" with "managers' capitalism" as an important issue in today's corporate world. Since mutual funds, including Index funds, generally d...
by Bob.Beeman
Wed Jul 17, 2013 9:56 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Ethical Implications of Index Investing
Replies: 12
Views: 1196

Re: Computer Hacked

A few years ago I filled in for a pregnant teacher at the High School where I work. One of the students in Honors Chemistry went to China for a week with his father, who had business there. He sent me an email asking if it was OK for him to take the chapter exam on the next Monday. I sent him an ema...
by Bob.Beeman
Fri Jun 07, 2013 4:23 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Computer Hacked
Replies: 12
Views: 1267

Re: Permanenr email address

One of the advantages of having your own domain is that you can generate a different email address for each company you do business with. These are all "forwarding addresses" so mail to them gets instantly forwarded to your "real" email address. So, you sign up for some deal at H...
by Bob.Beeman
Wed Apr 10, 2013 4:30 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Permanent email address
Replies: 45
Views: 3131

Re: Vanguard is on the Password Hall of Shame.

Thanks ladygeek.

When set to 100% probability (a brute force search of the entire keyspace) my calculator gives answers within a few percent of the ones at https://www.grc.com/haystack.htm

- Bob Beeman.
by Bob.Beeman
Sun Dec 09, 2012 4:31 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Vanguard is on the Password Hall of Shame.
Replies: 250
Views: 30712

Re: Losing Attractiveness Over Time

I work at a local High School and interact a lot with students. Being in my late 60s gives me a "grandpa" image, which eliminates a lot of stupid nonsense. Earlier this year kids started telling me that I look like Carl Fredricksen in the movie "UP!". I took that to heart and won...
by Bob.Beeman
Sun Dec 09, 2012 4:15 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Losing Attractiveness Over Time
Replies: 105
Views: 7988

Re: Vanguard is on the Password Hall of Shame.

First, I wanted to emphasize that yes, security is multi-layered, and you can't just focus on one thing (like password lengths). But there are only a few things that ordinary users can check for themselves. And if we find that these are flawed, why should that give us confidence?tadamsmar pointed ou...
by Bob.Beeman
Sun Dec 09, 2012 3:51 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Vanguard is on the Password Hall of Shame.
Replies: 250
Views: 30712

Re: Vanguard is on the Password Hall of Shame.

I have written a page that allows you to calculate the number of bits of entropy in a randomly chosen password with a given alphabet size and length.

The page is Here:
http://www.bee-man.us/computer/password_strength.html

More will follow.

- Bob Beeman.
by Bob.Beeman
Sun Dec 09, 2012 9:01 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Vanguard is on the Password Hall of Shame.
Replies: 250
Views: 30712

Re: Vanguard is on the Password Hall of Shame.

I for one am not even slightly worried about the password cracking thing. What I AM worried about is that Vanguard isn't taking a pretty obvious (even if it's only symbolic) step. The excuse that it would cost too much is nonsense. It would not be an overly complex change , even on a legacy system....
by Bob.Beeman
Wed Dec 05, 2012 7:53 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Vanguard is on the Password Hall of Shame.
Replies: 250
Views: 30712

Re: Vanguard is on the Password Hall of Shame.

I am confident that Vanguard, the largest mutual fund company in the world, employs the top security consultants in the business. I suspect we have almost no idea what security measures they use. Vanguard is certainly not going to tell us. To my knowledge, we have never heard or had a post from any...
by Bob.Beeman
Mon Dec 03, 2012 12:11 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Vanguard is on the Password Hall of Shame.
Replies: 250
Views: 30712

Vanguard is on the Password Hall of Shame.

Previous posts have discussed Vanguard's bad password policies, which appear to indicate that the site may have poor security, possibly even including storing passwords as plaintext (a BIG security NO-NO). Today I discovered that Vanguard is on the https://defuse.ca/password-policy-hall-of-shame.htm...
by Bob.Beeman
Sun Dec 02, 2012 9:55 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Vanguard is on the Password Hall of Shame.
Replies: 250
Views: 30712

Re: Who will back you up when your money is stolen?

About 3 years ago, as I got back from work at about 4PM, I heard the phone ringing and picked it up. The person on the phone asked me if around 12:30 PM I had made purchases at a BJ's location in Miami totaling $800. I replied "no". He then asked me if I had my Visa card in my pocket. I ch...
by Bob.Beeman
Sun Dec 02, 2012 9:01 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Who will back you up when your money is stolen?
Replies: 27
Views: 3204

Re: How lazy can we be with Vanguard?

I don't worry about business risk with Vanguard or Fidelity, but I do worry about security. Not just "identity theft" type security, but the server farms themselves. I can imagine scenarios where one big explosion or fire wipes out a lot of data. I hope they engage in modern security syst...
by Bob.Beeman
Sun Oct 07, 2012 1:56 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How lazy can we be with Vanguard?
Replies: 38
Views: 5054

Re: 70 is the New 65

Yes. 70 IS the new 65, at least for retirement planning purposes. This should not surprise anyone, as retirement at 65 implies that we are kids and/or students for 22 years or so, work for 43 years to age 65 and then live another 15 years to 80. Sorry, but planning to spend 43 years working and 37 y...
by Bob.Beeman
Sat Sep 08, 2012 8:44 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 70 is the New 65
Replies: 67
Views: 5748

Re: Why not use black tarps to protect roof?

I certainly agree that covering the roof (when it is undamaged) with a tarp is a bad idea. Based on my experience in Arizona and Florida, when you choose the color for a NEW roof, choose the lightest-colored one possible, as this minimizes the damage to the roof from the blazing Summer sun. The phot...
by Bob.Beeman
Mon Aug 13, 2012 3:58 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why not use black tarps to protect roof?
Replies: 58
Views: 8672

Re: Individual Stocks and CEO Risk

I agree. Individual stocks are incredibly risky. That's why I am slowly liquidating my Apple stock that I bought (mostly as a souvenir rather than an investment) back during the "Apple is going broke next month" days. Hopefully Tim Cook is an excellent CEO, but Steve Jobs is a really tough...
by Bob.Beeman
Fri Aug 10, 2012 9:39 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Individual Stocks and CEO Risk
Replies: 17
Views: 2533

Re: Once Again A Reason to Avoid Debit Cards

My wife and I keep our credit cards and checking/savings/debit accounts separate so that if somebody else maxes out one of our credit cards, it is extremely unlikely that it would affect both of us. Given the seemingly increasing irresponsibility/incompetence of businesses this seems like a prudent ...
by Bob.Beeman
Fri Aug 10, 2012 9:24 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Once Again A Reason to Avoid Debit Cards
Replies: 67
Views: 5118

Re: Vanguard Rep asked security question

I too wish Vanguard allowed longer passwords, but I'm hopeful that instead of working on that, perhaps they're concentrating their efforts on things that have a higher security ROI. ... So the upshot is - Sure, use a robust authentication approach, but don't go overboard. Authentication is just one...
by Bob.Beeman
Sat Jul 14, 2012 11:58 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Rep asked security question
Replies: 70
Views: 6965

Re: Vanguard Rep asked security question

The "visual symbol" and "name" is your selected image and phrase, which is to authenticate that you are actually at Vanguard (server authentication, although my trust in this system is very low and I'd rather rely on my bookmarks and SSL/DNS verification settings), not to authen...
by Bob.Beeman
Sat Jul 14, 2012 4:50 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Rep asked security question
Replies: 70
Views: 6965

Re: Vanguard Rep asked security question

Mr Beeman, I confess, your logic has beaten me into submission. If you say it is straight up UID + Password then it must be so. I have only my Vanguard Reps word for it being a dual level log on security system...how it works I admit I do not know...perhaps they are referring to the secure Corporat...
by Bob.Beeman
Sat Jul 14, 2012 2:50 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Rep asked security question
Replies: 70
Views: 6965

Re: Vanguard Rep asked security question

Ok I lied: one more post.

This page: http://kottke.org/12/06/the-worlds-worst-password-requirements-list shows that ING Bank uses a 4-DIGIT NUMERIC CODE for a password.

Look at some of the links. Pathetic!
by Bob.Beeman
Fri Jul 13, 2012 4:18 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Rep asked security question
Replies: 70
Views: 6965

Re: Vanguard Rep asked security question

Vanguards site is a 'dual password' type, with three levels of security...similar to many of the more secure banks. There is one password that allows the user to gain access to the website and another that allows them access to their account. The first password must be correctly entered before acce...
by Bob.Beeman
Fri Jul 13, 2012 4:06 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Rep asked security question
Replies: 70
Views: 6965

Re: Vanguard Rep asked security question

Bob, I have a question about this, since you seem to be an expert in this area. (I say that sincerely, not sarcastically) Doesn't Vanguard disable your account for online access after 3 or 4 failed attempts to enter the correct password? Wouldn't this stop a brute force attack to guess the password...
by Bob.Beeman
Fri Jul 13, 2012 3:08 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Rep asked security question
Replies: 70
Views: 6965

Re: Vanguard Rep asked security question

Of course, it is and always be a personal level of trust and comfort as to what one will accept, but, when I read things like this I have to wonder: http://news.sky.com/story/952931/fraud-ring-in-hacking-attack-on-60-banks Just sayin... As I think BYUvol appreciates, the breakins at eHarmony and Li...
by Bob.Beeman
Fri Jul 13, 2012 11:45 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Rep asked security question
Replies: 70
Views: 6965

Re: Vanguard Rep asked security question

He called me to discuss my account. The reason he called was because he is my new account representative, he said. He wanted to introduce himself and just wanted to know if I had any questions. He gave me some information regarding what was available to me at Vanguard, etc. I did have second though...
by Bob.Beeman
Fri Jul 13, 2012 10:42 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Rep asked security question
Replies: 70
Views: 6965

Re: Will Bogleheads buy a Megamillions ticket this week?

A number of years ago, sitting at the lunch table at work, I casually mentioned that one of the reasons I didn't play the lottery was that if my favorite number hit, there would be hundreds, and perhaps thousands of winners with whom I would have to share the winnings. Nobody thought this was possib...
by Bob.Beeman
Sat Mar 24, 2012 5:07 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Will Bogleheads buy a Megamillions ticket this week?
Replies: 112
Views: 6279

Re: Florida Vacation questions (Fort Lauderdale)

I live in Coral Springs, FL and have a list of (mostly) local favorite spots. Of course this is from the viewpoint of a local, not a tourist.

http://www.bee-man.us/external/florida_fun_links.htm

- Bob Beeman.
by Bob.Beeman
Sat Jan 14, 2012 10:59 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Florida Vacation questions (Fort Lauderdale)
Replies: 6
Views: 530

Identity Theft and Online Gambling.

There may be a big new threat coming for everyone with a credit card. According to an article on CNN http://www.cnn.com/2011/12/27/tech/web/online-gambling-legalization-likely/index.html Online lotteries and poker may be poised to become legal thanks to a new decision by the Justice Department reint...
by Bob.Beeman
Sat Dec 31, 2011 6:45 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Identity Theft and Online Gambling.
Replies: 0
Views: 220

Re: Effective E-mail Management

Perhaps this is off-topic, as it relates to home, but the best investment you can make to control spam is to buy a web site. This will cost you about $6 per month. Say your new website is uglyduckling.com Then create a bunch of email addresses, one for each company you deal with. Examples: ATT34@ugl...
by Bob.Beeman
Mon Dec 12, 2011 6:45 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Effective E-mail Management
Replies: 15
Views: 848

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