Category Archives: Resources

Online resources, local businesses, tools for traveling, and other helpful information.

Burn After Reading: Private Messages Made Simple

Email and texting are great modern conveniences, but they were never intended to be secret. Nowadays, with hackers dumping stolen messages on the Web and the government recording everything, these methods are decidedly risky for sending any information that must remain truly confidential. In fact, email was designed to be like an electronic equivalent of a postcard that can be read anywhere along the way by anyone who comes across it. Encryption with software, despite many forms being compromised by the NSA and others, is still held up by Edward Snowden and many security experts as the best means of securing private communications. But to do it right is hard, requiring preparation and a kind of discipline. If there were only some simple way of harnessing current available technology to permit an easy exchange of private information between individuals… And indeed there is. Southwest Cyberport presents Burn After Reading, free for anyone’s use. Burn After Reading is a secure private message dead-drop. It cleverly uses the same Internet technology already built into everyone’s Web browsers that enables safe purchasing online to allow private communications between two parties. All you need do is visit the Burn After Reading page and write your message into the field. You can have it send a link to the message for you, or you can send the link the page generates yourself in your own email to the other party. Either way, once the person … Continue reading

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Stop Worrying About Your WordPress Site

Here at SWCP, we love WordPress, the planet’s most popular and versatile open-source blogging and Content Management System. This very blog is a WordPress site, our Basic Web-Hosting package is tailored to support WordPress websites, and we even hold frequent WordPress meet-ups and working sessions at our Ideas & Coffee coworking suite next door. So, when news recently came of a serious bug potentially affecting all out-of-date WordPress sites, we were deeply concerned. This latest security threat, a “critical unpatched 0-day vulnerability affecting WordPress’ comment mechanisms“, should not be ignored. It would allow an attacker to manipulate post comments to infect visitors with malware, spam, or even install backdoors on your site. The first thing to do is to disable comments, check to make sure no bad actors have commented or become members and eliminate them. Then you should immediately backup and upgrade the WordPress platform to version 4.2.1, which is now patched. If you already updated to 4.2.1 a while ago, you may have to do so again. For someone who is not technically-minded, or just wants a simple, safe platform on which to do their thing, this can be asking a lot. Though the process of updating has become much easier over the years, many people still put off site updates as long as possible, unfortunately all-too-often not until the site breaks or is compromised. Site maintenance is nowhere near as fun as posting, after all, and to … Continue reading

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Tech Support Is Easier with a Copilot

Sooner or later, everyone needs help for their computer, or has been called upon by someone – parent, child, sibling, co-worker, or friend – to lend technical assistance for some problem too difficult for the other party to solve. Many times, advice must be given from far away, which can greatly compound the difficulties. And even if you’re quite familiar with the type and model of machine, it can be very frustrating trying to deal with computer problems entirely over the phone. Wouldn’t it be much easier for the helper to actually see the screen, and do whatever needs to be done from the person’s own desktop? Now there’s an online site that can allows just that: Copilot Remote Assistance. This handy tool grants the person giving tech support over the phone the ability to actually log into the recipient’s machine remotely. The supporter can actually drive the other device, moving the mouse and typing on the keyboard, while the recipient watches. No more long descriptions, having to go back a step, etc. Copilot is available to everyone for a small fee, but it’s free for our customers’ computers. Our techs often rely on it. So if you as a member need help, call SWCP Tech Support to get a special invitation code to start a session. After talking it over with the technician, you’ll have to download software for your recent Windows or Mac machine for Copilot to work, … Continue reading

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