Carrying Stones – Page 2 – moving a mountain one stone at a time

How I lost control of our bank accounts to a phone scammer

How I lost control of our bank accounts to a phone scammer | The Robservatory:

Do yourself a favor, and don’t be me. I never thought I’d be “that guy” either, as I keep current on scams, look for signs of fishiness on phone calls, etc. Still, they got me, and it was painful—not necessarily in terms of financial loss (we’re out $500 for maybe 60 to 90 days while they investigate), but in terms of time: Time to fix what I did, and even more time spent beating myself up over my stupidity.
Here’s the tl;dr version: Do not ever, as in never ever, give out a verification code over the phone. I know that now. I knew that earlier today. I’ve known that for years. And yet, I did it. What follows is a bit of the nitty-gritty on how I got scammed, what I learned (beyond the above), and some technological things that affected my behavior during the call. Hopefully the sharing of my stupidity will help others avoid the same fate…

Click the link above and read this article. I think it is so important for people to understand how these scams work. Rob is smart and I am thankful he detailed all of the steps that made this phone scam so convincing.
Sorry for your trouble Rob, but thank you for sharing!

Fragile, yet Resilient

Humans are fragile.
Flesh and blood. Walking bags of bones and meat brought to life by a smattering of thoughts—some good, some bad. When we’re hurt, we bleed, and it’s not that hard to hurt us.

If you prick us, do we not bleed? if you tickle us, do we not laugh? if you poison us, do we not die? and if you wrong us, shall we not revenge?”. (Act III, scene I).”
—William Shakespeare, The Merchant of Venice

No weapon is necessary to hurt us or even to kill us. Viruses have been hunting humans for millennia and there is a new killer. A virus called severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) leads to COVID-19, the disease brought on by this microorganism far too small to see.
As I understand it, the symptoms are similar to the flu. The lungs fill with fluid until the victim is drowning, gasping for breath until no breath can be taken.
Human beings. Us. We have never encountered this version of illness. The difference with COVID-19 is that over-the-counter medication won’t necessarily get you through it until you’re better. We have zero immunity to this disease. Think polio. Think smallpox and measles. Even consider the annual flu season. Those diseases were beaten back with a vaccine.
As of today, there is no known vaccine for COVID-19. If you get it, you’ve got it. Maybe you will get better, but if you don’t you will die.
The best tool we have to fight this threat is to resist human nature and stay away from each other. Individuals should resist joining up with their tribes, whether they are friends at the bar or the church. Be patient, let scientists work, and they will discover a vaccine. Vaccination will be our revenge on this disease. Some of us will die, but humans will survive.
Humans are resilient.

TipBITS: Enable the Startup Chime on New Macs – TidBITS

TipBITS: Enable the Startup Chime on New Macs – TidBITS:

When Apple disabled the startup sound by default in 2016, it was discovered that a Terminal command could bring it back:

sudo nvram BootAudio=%01

Unfortunately, that approach stopped working with Mac models in 2017, presumably due to Apple removing the option in a macOS update, and since then, new Macs have started up silently. Now, however, Twitter user DylanMcD8 has discovered a new NVRAM parameter that brings back the startup sound, even on the latest Macs.

sudo nvram StartupMute=%0

Also, the associated video is delightful.

William McRaven: If good men like Joe Maguire can’t speak the truth, we should be deeply afraid – The Washington Post

William McRaven: If good men like Joe Maguire can’t speak the truth, we should be deeply afraid – The Washington Post:

As Americans, we should be frightened — deeply afraid for the future of the nation. When good men and women can’t speak the truth, when facts are inconvenient, when integrity and character no longer matter, when presidential ego and self-preservation are more important than national security — then there is nothing left to stop the triumph of evil.

This statement from any military official is terrifying, more so when it comes from a retired Navy admiral and commander of U.S. Special Ops who oversaw the raid on Osama bin Laden.

Coffee, Cocktails, and High-Speed Pursuit

On my way to enjoy some time downtown I was passed by a burgundy sedan weaving through slow traffic in a gentrified residential neighborhood going something like 100 in a 30 with a screaming state trooper trailing about 70 yards behind.
I hope the trooper got him. That driver deserves some time for “reflection.”
Cortado and waterAnyway, I’m enjoying a Cortado at our awesome local shop while waiting for a gin tasting hosted by Castle and Key at our favorite bar. I’m looking forward to learning more about gin, how it’s made, and the best ways to enjoy it.