Archive for January, 2012
Tuesday, January 31st, 2012
When the internet first became popular, many counseled against shopping online because they believe it would lead to identify theft. While this was certainly true and remains true to this day, there are more ways for a person’s identity to be stolen online then simply providing credit card numbers to fraudulent sites. From time to time, there may be a security breach and hackers are able to get their hands on a list of credit card numbers, but cyber security has improved tremendously, making top consumer sites practically impenetrable. However, identity theft can still happen if a person isn’t careful.
1. Don’t use the same password on every site, especially for email.
Nowadays, people use their email for everything. They receive bills and pay bills electronically and their email is the portal for everything. A person can’t sign up for anything without it leading back to their email. While email servers, such as Google and Yahoo, pay a ton of money to prevent hackers from being able to access email accounts, smaller sites do not. Smaller sites, such as forums, are easily hacked, and if individuals are using the same password on small sites as they are for the important sites, they can end up having their identity stolen. Once someone has access to an email account, they have access to everything. Think about it. How does someone request a new password if they’ve ‘forgotten’ it? It is sent to their email.
2. Read before agreeing.
Often times, sites will have boxes that can be checked that prevent them from sharing personal information. Be sure to only fill out only the required boxes and uncheck the rest.
3. Consider telling a white-lie.
Let’s face it, a number of sites people sign up for on a daily basis have nothing to do with serious matters. If the site doesn’t pertain to something important, where the information needs to be correct, such as with work, consider filling in false information.
4. If wary about shopping online, but can’t seem to avoid it every now and again, consider using credit cards that are only good for that one transaction.
A number of banks have the option to use one-shot credit card numbers that are only good for one use. Obviously this would become overwhelming if an individual shops on a continuous basis, but it is perfect for someone who only wants to do it now and again and is afraid of risking their identity.
5. Avoid links when dealing with serious matters.
If an email comes in from a bank stating there is a problem with an account, don’t click the links provided. Instead, call the bank to gather further information.
6. Be wary of surfing the web.
While everyone loves encountering new and exciting pages, it can put a person’s identity at risk. Not all sites and pages are created equal and some are less protected than others. If there is a lock at the top of the page, it is a secure connection. Never provide sensitive information on a site where a lock doesn’t appear.
7. Limit the information placed on social media sites.
Facebook and Twitter have become an epidemic, and while most individuals using these sites are surrounded by friends and family members, they are still vulnerable to the outside world and can easily fall victim to identity theft.
8. Avoid phishing scams.
Everyone has received the email of the poor man stranded in Africa (or some other foreign land) and needs money to return home because he only has solid bars of gold with him, or some other nonsense story. These are phishing scams and, while this story may not be all that believable, countless fall victim to the stranger’s plight.
9. Beware of entering sensitive information in public places.
It’s surprising how many times account information is stolen from people looking over other people’s shoulders, but it happens frequently.
10. Once it is on the web, chances are it’s there forever.
So, when all else fails, just don’t put sensitive information on the web. Avoid sending emails with important numbers, like account numbers and social security numbers. Be smart when using the internet.
Fergal Glynn is the Director of Product Marketing at Veracode, an application security company that offers dynamic analysis tools.
Wednesday, January 25th, 2012
Writing blogs is an art and you must be focused on turning out blog posts which are very interesting to read and have content to catch the attention of the reader. When you are writing a blog you should totally concentrate on that one and do not let your mind wander away to something else. Remember that if you are a good blog writer then people will be actually waiting for your next blog post. So the onus lies on you to write something that will satisfy your blog fans. You must aim to produce the best blog of your life each time you sit down to write something. This will ensure quality write ups and you will be known as an awesome blogger.
What does your audience want?
Everyone has a habit of reading two or more articles and reproduce the same matter in different words. No wonder, people are fed up with such time wasting blog posts. To be a successful blogger you must go the extra distance and do some extensive research. You should give information which is entirely new and the audience has never come across before.
Extensive background research
When you are doing background research for an article, try to include that information which prompted even you to say ‘wow’. Your readers will also appreciate if you write unique posts. Most of the posts by average bloggers do not have enough ‘wow’ material and this disappoints the readers. You need to incorporate good materials so that the readers stick with your blog posts. It is always a good idea to attach a video or an image with your blog to enhance the visual appeal of the write-up.
Let the readers enjoy
The bloggers nowadays are real smart and they always strive to provide good content to the readers. In addition they also invite the readers for their inputs regarding a post; in this way the readers feel that they are more involved with the blogs than before. You can also create a separate post mentioning the inputs received from the different readers and leave a space for the opinion and comments of others. Do not forget to respond to the comments left by the readers.
Have an engaging title
The title is a vital part of a blog post as it $indicates what the post is all about without giving away too much information. The language should be fun and punchy to compel the readers to read the entire post. Once you have finished writing the post, make an effort to clear the article of any unwarranted words, phrases and sentences that may put off a reader. The title can be funny and sensitive but not to the point of destroying the whole interest of the post.
The main aim of a blog post is to give enjoyment to a reader. If you miss out on this then the whole effort in writing goes waste. So along with the title your effort should be to make the post interesting throughout. Bits and patches of good content are good but not enough to ensure your longevity in this field.
About the author: Alyssa Clarke is a blogger who loves writing on tech sites the most. She is always on alook out for covering latest news in her posts that range from latest tech stuff to even firefox add-ons. Currently she is planning to do a piece on web and product design tips and tricks.
Monday, January 23rd, 2012
Since I’ve been looking this up for my own reaons, I thought I would share my findings. Direct Traffic means of course that there’s NO referrer when the visitor came to the site.
This could be because someone:
- typed in the URL directly in their browser
- used a bookmark in their browser
- clicked a link from an email with a non-web-based email client (like Outlook)
- clicked a link in a document (PDF, Word)
- clicked a link from within a secure site (https://)
- used a mobile app (which could come from twitter, stumbleupon, email, etc.)
- some corporate intranets may strip out referrers
- if the user has browser plug-ins to mask their referrer
- some banner/PPC campaigns may not pass a referrer correctly
- The IE browser can sometimes be problematic & not send a referrer under certain conditions
Has anyone heard of any other reasons traffic would be identified as direct traffic in Google Analytics?
Friday, January 20th, 2012
I skate to where the puck is going to be, not where it has been. – Wayne Gretzky
Blog commenting, article spinning, article directory submission, profile links: such methods are still in the search engine optimization tool box for many internet marketers because they still work here and there. What these site owners don’t want to come to terms with is the fact that their success has a very short life span. Sooner or later, Google engineers will update their algorithm and their rankings will evaporate in seconds.
Rather than spending months trying to trick Google into ranking your content based on hundreds or thousands of subpar quality links, spend months on generating links that will last for decades. Realize that although those subpar quality links will get you a quick payoff in the short term, you are wasting a massive amount of your time because, sooner or later, Google will devalue those links.
Even short term success isn’t guaranteed. If you’re getting traffic from high ranking keywords, inevitably you’ll have people looking at what other type of content you have on the web. If people find thousands of spun articles that link directly to your site, written in language only Jabba the Hut would understand, you can be sure that they aren’t going to buy anything associated with your site’s brand. It’s pretty obvious when a site is looking to provide useful information and when it is looking to cash in by gaming Google. Eventually, your site won’t be a visited by harmless Googler, but a Google engineer who will manually inspect your site and determine its fate in seconds.
Yes, it takes a lot of time to write quality guest posts that are posted on established blogs. Yes, it takes a lot of time to seek out blog owners who are open to guest posts in the first place. Yes, it takes a lot of time to create content which people would naturally want to link to. However, all of those time consuming methods will give you more value in the long run because Google will value those methods for many years! Aside from guest posting and creating quality content, there are many other white hat methods that you can invest in…
- Infographics, which can be used as link bait.
- Youtube videos, which can give your site traffic and links, if you have interesting enough content.
- Message boards, which are hard to set up, but can be a source of sustained traffic and links that grows indefinitely.
- Press releases that may find their way on big news sites and provide you with traffic and links.
Too many SEO’s fail to think of their work as a long term investment, which is what it really is. Rather than trying to emulate the quick results of PPC with questionable linking practices, focus on creating value.
Nickolay Lamm is an internet marketing specialist who manages InventHelp and InventHelp Scam.
Friday, January 20th, 2012
How would you like it is there was a massive billboard in your city which allowed anyone with a grudge against you to anonymously post defamatory messages and get away with it 100% of the time?
Believe it or not, such a billboard already exists in the form of sites such as pissedconsumer.com, ripoffreport.com, scambook.com, complaintsboard.com, and any online message board. Anyone, be it your competitor, a disgruntled employee, or customer with unrealistic expectations can write whatever they want on these sites. Because the aforementioned sites are powerful, these defamatory comments have a good chance of ranking for your name when you search for it.
Let’s assume the worst and that sites such as pissedconsumer.com and ripoffreport.com are ranking for your name. Although your first instinct may be to send a cease and detest order, the website itself, is protected by the Communications Decency Act of 1996. Trying to sue the poster is possible. However, suing the author for libel may be a very long and expensive battle ending up nowhere, though one which should be considered if you have the resources. If you can prove that published libel caused you significant harm you can go ahead and sue the person. Assuming changing your personal or business name is not possible, what else can you do?
- Put out as much material online as possible, which features your name. The more of it you have, the less chance that sites such as pissedconsumer.com will show up for your name. This material can be in the form of articles, blogs, websites, social media profiles, and videos that have your name in the title. Unfortunately, getting defamation completely off the first page of the search results may take as long as a year. It all depends on how much of it there is. However, the effects of online libel can be mitigated in the short term.
- If you have someone that is out to get you and you know that you are clearly in the right, make a blog, Youtube video, or website that explains the situation. And even if the negative comments are somewhat true, do your best to explain what you did wrong and how you are changing the way you do business. Creating a web property that ranks in the top three of the search results is easy to do. Your job would be to address the online comments in a way that puts you in a favorable light.
Google’s algorithm is constantly changing and the good news for professionals and businesses is that sites such as pissedconsumer.com may be harmed by future Google updates. However, your reputation, which is most likely your most significant asset, should not be left to chance. Take a proactive approach to marketing yourself online now, whether or not defamation is popping up for your name in the search engines.
Nickolay Lamm is an internet marketing specialist who manages InventHelp and InventHelp Scam.