Heartbleed, Passwords, And You

Many of you have probably heard something in the news about something called Heartbleed. I wanted to share my thoughts on the topic now that some time has passed and the intitial panic and fear mongering has settled down.

What Is Heartbleed?

Heartbleed is a flaw in the technology used by many websites to keep your private information (passwords, usernames, credit cards) secure.

If a website that you used was vulnerable to the Heartbleed exploit it could mean that the "bad guys" have obtained your private information (passwords, usernames, credit cards).

Which Sites Were Affected?

Numerous sites across the internet were affected. Some major websites that were vulernable (doesn't mean the bad guys necessarily stole your private info) include:

  • Dropbox
  • Flickr
  • Gmail
  • Google
  • Instagram
  • Netflix
  • OKCupid
  • Pinterest
  • Tumblr
  • Yahoo
  • YouTube

This is just a small list of some the largest websites that were affected. Many smaller sites could have been affected as well.

Was My Bank Affected?

It doesn't appear most major bank websites were affected by the Heartbleed exploit.

Should I Change My Passwords?

At this point most major websites have fixed the vulnerability caused by the Heartbleed exploit. It is a wise idea to change your password for any of the sites listed above. I would also recommend changing your password for any site that involves finances (banks, online stores, etc).

Reusing passwords puts you at risk, regardless of Heartbleed.

Many people use the same password on multiple websites. If you use the same password for your Amazon account as one of the websites that was vulnerable to Heartbleed you may find that the "bad guys" now can break into that account as well.

30 Second Tip - Create Strong Passwords

Final Thoughts

The Heartbleed exploit is not the end of the world. I think it is a great opportunity for people to update their passwords and make sure that they are using different passwords on different websites.


If you appreciate the free content on NiceGuyTechnology.com please support Mike by shopping on Amazon. If you click on the link and buy something, Mike will receive a small percentage of your purchase and it won't cost you any extra! Thanks for your consideration!

Software Updates Available For iPhone, iPod Touch, And iPad (3/10/14)

On Monday, March 10th, Apple released a software update for iPhones, iPod Touches, and iPads. The software update contains numerous improvements and bug fixes. You can install the software update by following the instruction found below.

HOW TO UPDATE IPHONE OR IPAD TO 7.1

Tap on Settings

Tap on General

Tap on Software Update

Tap on Download and Install or Install Now. Note: You must have more than 50% battery or be plugged into power to install the update.

Tap on Agree

Your device will automatically restart itself when the update is ready to install.

Biggest Change To iOS 7.1

The thing that most people will notice right away is that the shift key looks different

If the background is white and the arrow is dark, and there's a horizontal line beneath the arrow, you're in ALL CAPS mode.

If the background is white and the arrow is dark, and there's a horizontal line beneath the arrow, you're in ALL CAPS mode.

If the background is white and the arrow is black, you're in Upper case mode.

If the background is white and the arrow is black, you're in Upper case mode.

If the background is dark gray and the arrow is white, you're in lower case mode.

If the background is dark gray and the arrow is white, you're in lower case mode.


If you appreciate the free content on NiceGuyTechnology.com please support Mike by shopping on Amazon. If you click on the link and buy something, Mike will receive a small percentage of your purchase and it won't cost you any extra! Thanks for your consideration!

Ask The Nice Guy - Portable Battery Packs, iPad Messaging, Selling Old Smartphones

This is the 16th post in a series called Ask The Nice Guy. In this series I will attempt to provide answers to the various questions I get asked throughout the week.

What’s inside? Here are the questions answered in this blog post, boiled down to five word (or less) summaries.

  1. Portable Battery Pack
  2. Texting From iPad
  3. Sell Old Smartphone

QUESTION 1: Which Portable Battery Pack Would You Recommend?

The kids gave us a smart phone for Christmas, and I would like to buy a battery pack charger. Hopefully, one that I could use to charge all of my devices (Kindle, iPod, iPhone, and iPad). What do you recommend?

A portable battery pack can be a great buy for people who travel and want to make sure that they don't find themselves in a position where they can't use their device because they forgot to charge it the night before and now you have a four hour wait at the airport (outlets at airports are always at a premium).

Based on my research I would recommend the Satechi 10000 MaH Portable Energy Station Extended Battery Charger Pack.

It costs around $60 and should work with most gadgets out there (not laptops). It has two USB ports on it so you can charge your smart phone and another device at the same time. At a full charge the Satechi should be able to fully charge an iPhone 5 six times and have a little juice leftover.


QUESTION 2: How Does Texting Work From The iPad?

Why can I text some people from my iPad and not others (yet I can do those from my iPhone)?

The iPhone & iPad both have an app called Messages. The Messages app on the iPhone is capable of sending traditional text messages (SMS/MMS) while the Messages app on the iPad is not capable of sending traditional text messages (SMS/MMS).

The Messages app on the iPhone & iPad can send iMessages. iMessages can only be sent to other Apple devices (iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch, Macs).

The reason you are able to "text" some people from your iPad is due to the fact that the iPad can send an iMessage to people you know that have an iPhone and/or iPad and have also registered their phone number or email address with iMessage.

To learn more about iMessage visit Apple's website


QUESTION 3: SELLING OLD SMARTPHONE?

I recently upgraded to a new iPhone and want to try and get some money for my previous phone (HTC Incredible 2). What are some of my best options for selling an used smartphone?

You can always sell used items on Craiglist and eBay. I am going to recommend a couple websites that are dedicated to either purchasing your used smartphone (Gazelle) or helping you sell your used smartphone to another buyer (Swappa).

Gazelle makes it really easy to sell your used smartphone. If you aren't selling one of the more popular phones (iPhone, Galaxy S3, Galaxy S4) you may not be offered a very good price though.

  • Find your item on www.gazelle.com. If the item is not on our website, unfortunately we do not accept it. Please do NOT select an item if it does not exactly match your item exactly, we will not be able to offer you anything for it.
  • Once you've found your item, let us know what condition its in by answering a few questions. Please remember the rating of "Flawless" would be for an item which appears and functions as if it has never been used.
  • If you like our offer just complete the checkout process and tell us how you'd like to get paid: Check, PayPal or Amazon.com gift card.
  • Shipping is FREE! We'll even send you a box for qualified orders (small electronics over $30.00).
  • Our offer is good for 30 days but the faster you send it in, the quicker you'll get paid.
  • Once we receive your box, the Gazelle team will check out the contents and pay you quickly.

Swappa allows you to list and sell your smartphone on a site dedicated for buyers and sellers of smartphones.

  • No seller fees! Swappa does not charge listing or insertion fees. Buyer pays a flat "sale fee" only when listing sells.
  • Get paid faster. A listing is not considered sold until the buyer pays.
  • Our support staff are experienced mobile users. We are actually helpful and appreciate your business.
  • Just mobile devices... Swappa is easy to use because it's just for buying and selling mobile devices.
  • We use PayPal too, so you are protected.

If you appreciate the free content on NiceGuyTechnology.com please support Mike by shopping on Amazon. If you click on the link and buy something, Mike will receive a small percentage of your purchase and it won't cost you any extra! Thanks for your consideration!