Hackers needed to help us access our own computers

Just curious, but whatever happened to Anonymous?

If you remember, that was a cyber vigilante group that stood for truth and justice, and was always threatening to hack into the files of anyone and everyone on the Dark Side, from ISIS to North Korea, to corporations behaving badly.

You always felt kind of good about it because these hackers were on your side, and they would wreak havoc on the forces of evil in the world.

Except they never do. I was all jacked for them to hack JPMorgan Chase, but that didn’t happen, either.

I’m starting to think that when they are not wearing their Guy Fawkes masks, Anonymous is just a bunch of boring software writers sitting in a darkened cubicle eating their Campbell’s cream of mushroom soup with a straw because their moms forgot to pack them spoons.

And this is not a challenge to hack into my own email account; I’ll save you the trouble because there’s nothing there.

I put all the embarrassing, scandalous, obnoxious stuff in my life right out here in a public column, so, by contrast, my emails are hopelessly dull, such as:

“Hello Charles,

How are you today? I am fine today.


It’s not that I dislike software writers, most of whom do brilliant work. My problem is with parasites who either write software designed to foil other software writers or perform software updates.

I suppose you can make the argument that the second group is at least trying to do something productive.

But you know it is their bosses saying: “We need more cash; come up with a new version of the existing software, and don’t forget to make it totally incompatible with the current version.”

I recall a training session where we questioned why a simple function on the old version was now six times more complicated on the new version.

And I swear, with a straight face, the trainer said: “We don’t want you to go too fast, we want the program to slow you down and make you think about what you’re doing.”

To which our next question was: “How do you enjoy life on whatever planet it is that you live on?”

But at least I understand them. You want more money, so you make nonsensical changes that mess up what was a perfectly good program.

However, I really loathe the people in the first group, which generally fall into the category of cybersecurity.

While software updaters only make it nearly impossible to use your computer, the software-security folks go for that last full measure.

By the way, you know when your security chief is a woman because you get actual access questions like this:

In what city did you meet your spouse?

In what city did your mother and father meet?

What is the first name of the boy or girl you first kissed?

What is the place your wedding reception was held?

Huh? What guy is going to remember any of that?

And most times, if you get the answer wrong, you just get locked out of the program.

Here, I really feel that if I answer incorrectly, the programmer is not just going to lock me out, she is going to hit me in the head with a skillet.

And now, having worked with computers for two decades, I have officially exhausted all possible passwords — right at a time when more software is requiring that you change your password every 30 minutes.

And it can’t be like the old password. And it has to have small letters, capital letters, odd numbers, even numbers, prime numbers and, my favorite, “special symbols” — none of which I’ll remember.

Come to think of it, I need Anonymous — to hack into my own accounts.


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