Archive for March, 2011

Is No One Safe Online?!

In a word: No.

I talked a while back about how a digital attack on Iran could well be the opening of a new phase where the Internet is a battlefield as much as any war torn country.  Well, that seems to have been born out this past week with a number of online attacks “originating from China”.  I put quotes around that because it’s entirely possible that efforts to trace the attack have simply been fooled into thinking that the trail ends in China.  With the Cloud becoming more popular, it’s going to be easier for hackers to take over your computer for their use, without you ever knowing about it.

However, that doesn’t mean that it wasn’t someone (or several someones) in China, either.  There’s something fishy going on, though, because the Chinese government has denied that they were involved (check the bottom of the article).  Maybe I missed it, but I don’t remember anyone else suggesting that they had anything to do with it.  Sadly, it’s all too easy for anyone with a bit of programming knowledge to hack into computers these days.  The odds are pretty good, I think, that the hit on WordPress was just someone making trouble for kicks, like about half of the hacking done anyway.

However, some of it looks to have been pretty deliberately targeted.  It doesn’t matter whether you agree with G20 or not, you’ve got to agree that the hacking attempts against them really made a mess of things.  Put together, they almost look like someone’s getting revved up (no, I don’t think it’s the Chinese government) to make a big splash in the hacking community – who, of course, is probably reading this right now and trying not to laugh too hard.

Just kidding, everyone.  Most of the people in the hacking world aren’t doing it for sheer hate, although plenty of them are using it to make money.  But this is another excellent example of how the Internet is turning into a new frontier for warfare, so you need to make sure that your computers and websites are as safe as you can make them.  Beyond that, there’s nothing you can do but keep moving forward in your business and hope that you never have to deal with the worst of what could happen.



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When Did Spam Get Rude?

Ok, I know I’ve already complained about spam ads recently, but here’s something else that’s caused me great personal consternation:  At some point in the past week or so, everyone seems to have decided that it’s OK for clickable ads to talk to you.

Not talk to you like “hey, here’s our ad and we’d like you to read it so that you’ll decide to give us a chance”.  Instead, it’s becoming “hey, we’re loud and in your face and we’re making noise so that you can’t hear anything else that you’re actually doing – either give us what we want or we’re going to continue to hold your auditory senses hostage”.

When I’m online, I’ve usually got several browser windows or tabs opened at once, and I’m usually listening to music.  The thing that’s hacking me off is that these ads with sound are usually coming up on the pages where I’m listening to something or soon will be.  So, it’s knowingly stomping on what I’m doing – not accidentally, the way you’d expect with multiple pages up.  When that happens, it doesn’t matter whether the ad is about something that I’ve looked at before or that I just might be interested in, it’s forcing me to drop whatever I’m doing so that I can figure out what’s happened and why everything’s being walked on by some chatty commercial that belongs on my television between show segments.

It was bad enough that these ads have been taking up more and more space on the sites I visit (do any of us really want to put up with ads being placed in the middle of our News Feeds?), why do they have to harass us when we’re focusing on some other page at the moment now?  Would we suddenly put up with it if we had this same problem from our spam folders in our email accounts – you’re reading a message from your sister who’s halfway across the country and suddenly the words are drowned out by MAKE SURE TO VISIT THE BUYMORE THIS SUNDAY FOR SUPER SALES ON THE PENTON 13 VIDEO PROJECTOR!  HERE’S A COUPON THAT’LL GET YOU FIFTEEN PERCENT OFF ON ALL FLASH DRIVES ON OUR TOP SELLERS SHELF – WOW!!!

I understand the importance of making sure that people know about what your company offers – heck, that doesn’t mean I want do deal with ads that are going to demand my attention with the only alternative to be that I’ve lost my concentration while I was trying to shut them up.  That’s just bad business, because it gives me a stronger negative impression of whatever’s being represented than I might have ever had beforehand.  There’s a place for video in helping to promote your company, but PPC just isn’t it.  These people need to remember that gaining new customers involves treating them with respect.   Techndu’s an SEO company, that knows exactly what it offers! It knows exactly how, where and what message is to be passed. Like the way it takes care of its own marketing strategies, it takes equal care of its clients’ marketing needs. It never spams!!

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Taking The Internet Everywhere Changes The Communication Landscape Yet Again

Everyone knows that the ability to communicate is the foundation on which all society is ultimately built.  That’s why the Internet has made the world so much smaller than it once was – when you can communicate easily with someone halfway around the world, the distance of miles doesn’t seem nearly so great as when it was a hindrance to that interaction.  The interesting thing is that, while it’s done this, it hasn’t often done much of anything to make communication with people close to you that much easier.

Or so it would seem.  The trick here is that communication was already so much easier than when dealing with someone on the other side of the globe that the improvement isn’t all that great in comparison.  But it is there.  For starters, you do get email items a lot faster than anything through parcel post.  The improvement is still significant whenever direct personal interaction is complicated by distance or some other factor.  And then there are services like Twitter that make it convenient to send a quick message to everyone (at least everyone who’s paying attention) without having to make a lot of different calls.

With Facebook buying up Beluga, it’s likely that this is about to get a lot more effective.  Since Beluga is kind of in between Facebook for your smart phone (there’s already a Facebook mobile app, by the way) and Twitter in what it does,  it’s going to be a lot easier to maintain all of your Facebook connections while away from your computer.  So, with such a good idea being supported by the leading social media company, communicating with people near you by means of the Internet is about to become more convenient and more effective than the other methods that used to serve just as well.

For companies, this opens up a whole new facet of social media marketing.  While you’ll still need to include both main line SM and mobile systems in your efforts, you’ll be able to hybrid your efforts as well to reach people who want the in-depth communicability with the simplicity of short messages sent out to lots of people.  That makes this a real opportunity for anyone wanting to use every chance they can get to promote their companies.  This kind of innovation is why the Internet is able to reinvent society on both the global and local scale.

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