Data thieves have been at this game for hundreds of years. Data has always been a commodity. ( and valuable )
You can bypass this and go to the bottom few lines if you don't care to learn about password security prior to the intenet.
I started down this rabbit hole over 50 years ago. I was assigned to a small intelligence unit in the US Army. Our data and intell collection sites were strategically positioned around the world, and computers were just arriving on the scene. But not in the field operations. Our collection sites were manned by US Army personnel but not always in uniform.
Our daily collection of material was analyzed and collated, then sent via secure courier to somewhere in the US. Along with my job as a technician/repairman; I had to keep a log of each armed guard detail as they entered and left our secure compound/ communications center. Many of our sites were just a small area with large antennas and a big box mounted on a large truck. The trail of bread crumbs to reenact any data dissemination was logged and double checked. We had to keep a lid on who we were and who got the data we collected. No one in our units could reveal our true mission.
Any notes or paper cards and teletype punch tape was put in a paper bag, labeled, documented, and then carried to a large incinerator for destruction. Data that was needed immediately was hand delivered to an encrypted teletype system and the private keys for this encryption device were rotated every 12 hours.
Does this seem a bit of overkill? If this information of live combat missions and enemy movement were to be intercepted or fall into the wrong hands, hundreds of lives could be lost during each mission. We really did keep secrets secret. We were so good at our operational security, that even local combat commanders that we worked for on a daily basis did not know our true mission.
We were labeled as spooks, spys, ghosts, and deadbeats; as they did not understand what we were there for. Our units never did receive recognition of our success. And that was intentional.
How far will you go to protect your data and your financial instruments ? Keeping it safe means sometimes hiding it.
Even though we were sending them enemy data/communications and enemy troop movement, the local combat commanders did not know it came from us. We only dropped a hint of our missions when we needed their help to secure our machines and move or destroy them in case our coms/collection center was in danger of being compromised and over run by enemy troops.
Many forward data collection sites were kept secure and guarded by our own Special Forces units and re-enforced with local friendlies and natives. The large box that served as an operations center was constructed with intregal panels of highly flammable material that would melt everything into a puddle of metal if we pulled the doomsday switch and had to run. Nothing was to be left behind to aid the enemy.
Now lets talk about your need to keep your passwords secret. No need to melt everything to the ground to protect your crypto or your bank account.
A great password manager and a low social media profile will work wonders. But, 2FA is my 1st choice.
2Fa on your phone is great, but if you change phones, you have to move the 2Fa manually for each account. Do you keep a paper copy of your seed phrase for each wallet? Don't copy and paste this seed phrase, you leave a digital trail when you do this. Do it on paper.
I personally stamp a stainless steel blank card and keep this in a hidden safe. The steel will not burn not corrode if it gets buried in the dirt or flooded space.
A screen shot of Google Auth. 2FA security codes
Phishing scams are getting so good, that I have been surprised and almost clicked on a request for a bank account #. These data thieves spend days and days trying to perfect their phishing scams. Check the URL and remember, your exchange will never ask you for a password.
I personally airgap my password files. They are not connected to the internet. They are physically separated from any network and only see the light of a computer screen when I need to input the passwords to an app. I also use a VPN. I set my computer to turn off after 3 min of unattended use. I use one computer for social media and emails. I use a seperate computer with a vpn and secure browser for my financial dealings.
Change your password. Please . Change your password. This will save you so much time and grief . Change your password and make it difficult. Clear your history and clear your cookies often. They also leave a bread crumb trail.
Set up 2fa for your google account also. If you lose control of your google accounts, a hacker can attack and change your passwords, change your email, and spoof all of your contacts. Yes, you will put your friends and family at risk if your google account is hacked.
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