Welcome to the new How To Gurus Blog

Where you can always find my latest Demos and YouTube Videos. You will find samples taken from my Training DVDs and also exclusive videos created specifically for my online audience.

Friday, August 19, 2005

A Message from George Peirson about Identity Theft

Some info on credit card security and identity theft.

Using credit cards online is about the safest way to use credit cards, as long as you can trust the company. Most major companies online are very reliable, including the two that I recommended. The reason online payments are so safe is all the security features built in to using a credit card online. Everything is handled using encryption and the actual credit card number is only shown to the credit card company. The online seller actually never sees your full credit card number, they only get a verification from the credit card company.

The least safe way to use a credit card is in a restaurant, where the waiter takes your card away to get it approved. During that time your credit card is in someone else's hands and you can't see what they are doing. Most credit card theft comes from restaurants, stores and other outlets where you hand someone your card and they walk away with it. The second most common way to have credit card numbers stolen is by having your credit card bills stolen out of your mail box. Online credit card use is considered the safest way to use a credit card.

Identity theft is a whole different issue and if you are using eBay you will start getting emails that are termed "phishing" emails. These will look like they come from either eBay or PayPal and ask you to update or confirm your identity or information. EBay, PayPal and all banks will never send you an email asking you to update your information. All of these emails are fakes and are trying to steal your info. Be very careful about these. They usually look just like authentic emails and they have links that take you to fake sites that look just like the real sites, but their sites only have the page that asks for your information, any other link on that fake page will take you back to the real site, making them seem even more real.

The rule of thumb here is to never click on any email you were not expecting from eBay, PayPal or a bank. The only emails from eBay that will have valid links in them will be for auctions that you bid on or know you won and were expecting. To be safe you should always to go eBay or PayPal by typing in the address in your web browser. Simply type in http://www.ebay.com for eBay and https://www.paypal.com for PayPal. If you are unsure about an email from either eBay or PayPal you can forward it to them and they will let you know if it is genuine or not. Forward to one of these addresses: spoof@ebay.com or spoof@paypal.com

Believe it or not, I get about 20 of these fake emails a day and always forward them onto eBay and PayPal so that they can track down the crooks.

What programs do you recommend for new Web Designers?

Here is what I recommend Web Designers should know:


These are the core programs and will handle 95% of your needs.

You may want to add in Flash training, and if you decide to create web sites for other companies you should learn either PHP or ASP (web programming languages)

As in anything else, the more you know the better off you are. I don't have any specific recommendations for books, except the Photoshop Bible by Deke McClelland.

A great source for free information on HTML and JavaScript is http://www.internet.com/