Two-Factor Nightmares

Chances are that by now many readers will have moved on to Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) for their most sensitive logins. The industry has been relentless in its support of this feature, sometimes forcing it on you for your own good. But not everything has been a field of daisies. I had a near-miss this very morning, which encouraged me to write this cautionary tale and offer some solutions you may find useful.

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More control for your keyboard

The Casio keyboard I bought a few months ago to learn piano is working great, but it does not give me a lot of control over the sound, since it’s relatively inexpensive. For instance, it has no native way to quiet down a layered instrument so it doesn’t overpower the base sound. This is has been reported by many owners. I found a simple solution that likely is valid for most modern keyboards from most brands.

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All my crypto apps updated

It’s a fairly small change, but one that may mean much. The versions I just pushed out include an icon on the toolbar, plus sometimes a special button, in order to download encrypted and decrypted files loaded in the box as a link. This gets around the file size restriction of the right-click and “save as…” method that was used until now, especially on Chrome. I’ve been able to load and save files over 1 GB in size. Then you can attach them to a regular email, for instance. This affects the following apps: PassLok Privacy, PassLok for Email, PassLok Universal, FusionKey, SeeOnce, and URSA.

PassLok v2.5 is here!

It’s been a while without an update, but now here’s one that may be bigger than it appears at first. PassLok has moved to version 2.5, which allows users to share their Locks with friends nearby via a QR code. The picture here contains my Lock, in case you want to communicate with me through PassLok.

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Introducing BytePad: simple, decently secure encryption for files

Quite some time ago, I wrote an article discussing the practicability of using a file as a key for encrypting other files. As I am preparing a talk on what can you possibly do if you find your computer compromised, I thought I’d optimize the tool in that article. A couple weeks later, the result is considerably faster and more powerful than the original. At least, enough to warrant a new article. So here it is.

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Learning piano not so young: The beginning

New Year 2022 resolution: to learn to play the piano. I’m sure many of you have made a similar resolution, and perhaps abandoned it after a while. I am aware of the pitfalls ahead, and so I’d like to tell you how I’ve gotten started. In this article I review the different learning methods I’ve surveyed, the instrument I chose, my general setup, and some basic ideas about the whole thing. I cannot promise this will work, so stand by for another article a few months from now telling you how it went.

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