The Gates of Wrath, Summer of Scam, and Marriott's dislodging


Hi there,

Sometimes explaining digital risk and cybersecurity takes imagination. For me, metaphors and analogies abound.

Here's another one:

Think of advanced cybersecurity systems as gates. Gates operated by really smart, super-informed gatekeepers that never complain, take a day off or ask for a raise. 

gate wifi connected securityPM

With smart-gates, when you are on the internet, the gatekeeper determines who and what is legit and gets in or is turned away. It's the job of the gatekeeper to examine all your internet traffic and email to keep you and your stuff safe. 

Cybercrime is a $6 trillion problem, and it's why we say:

  • It's humanity's front line of change in the new Digital Age.
  • It's the cleave for a new generation of have's and have-nots.
  • And, it's why we call cyber the existential risk of our times.

green_checkmark_rxConsequently, the business of innovation in "smart-gates" is very, very good and 'tis the season for consumers of cybersecurity technology.

The Gates of Wrath

The internet's democratizing effect is driving cyber risk to every last individual and device connected to the network. All the way to the last capillary of the internet, in the Digital Age, change and risk reside in our own hands

Advanced cybersecurity technology works like a smart-gate between the outside and your devices and networks. The gates are continually informed to adapt, evolve, and work 24/7/365 to face the future ready for the massive changes ahead.

Smart-gate security software:

  • inspects credentials and does background checks on everyone and everything that wants in
  • uses profiling extensively
  • compares against other known threats and bad actors
  • uses sandboxing to test the behavior of the iffy and slightly sketchy
  • is now enabled with machine-learning and AI to stop threats never seen before

The smart-gate technology does it all in real-time, seamlessly for the user, and as our customers know; it works exceedingly well.

TDS brand icon-device protectionSee how smart-gate tech works with Device Protection for Macs, Windows, and Android devices here.


TDS brand icon- private email accountSee how smart-gates work with Private Email here.


TDS brand icon-routerAnd, to see a next-gen example of how smart-gate cybersecurity technology works to protect your home and office routers and Wi-Fi networks, click here for more about the Router Network Security service.


Barbarians at the Gate

Bear with me while I can't resist making a play on "Barbarians at the Gate." It's so apropos! 

So, speaking of gates, did you know your browser is like an open "barn door" to the outside? 

Well, it is, and cybercriminal barbarians around the world just love a leaky browser.

An unprotected browser lets them saunter their way in unnoticed, do as they please, and perpetrate their exploits with minimal fuss.

green_checkmark_rxIf you're a bad guy and want in without using email, you use the browser as your point of entry.

firefox-logo-300x310We use and recommend Firefox as the default browser.

Be sure to scroll below for Firefox's:

  • List of Six Tips for privacy and security shopping online over the busy season.
  • Lockdown Websites for a great how-to for Firefox security settings

And, as an added bonus and consistent with our best-in-class providers, Firefox has a partnership with ExpressVPN - our top-recommendation for VPNs. See tiles below for more on the planet's best VPN. 

Marriott's Dislodging

Finally, it's also hard to resist piling on the Marriott story - the one about the half-billion personal records stolen under management's apathetic eyes for over four years.

After all, the Marriott breach is the biggest ever since Yahoo's 3.5 billion users were hacked in 2016 and 2017.  

Here's the chart using the companies' own data:

chart of largest US breaches-1

And, as long as my resistance level is low as I write this today, if you are still using Yahoo email you are either:

  • massively under-informed
  • just not very smart
Screen Shot 2018-12-01 at 4.27.56 PM

For some clarity in the face of massive incompetence at Marriott, we go to our guru Krebs for the real skinny:

"... anytime we see such a colossal intrusion go undetected for so long, the ultimate cause is usually a failure to adopt the most important principle in cybersecurity defense that applies to both corporations and consumers: Assume you are compromised."  

Krebs on Security, December 1st, 2018, read more.

In a nutshell, Krebs says, assume you are compromised and are, or will be, a target.  

The Marriott breach is the headline of the day.  But the revelation demonstrates with a bang, again:

green_checkmark_rxYou cannot count on anyone caring for your digital-self but you. 

And this, folks, is the only sane way to approach the coming years and the first innings for civilization in the new Digital Age.

Thanks for reading,

Brad Deflin

View or print online.

PS - The 2018 hot season has been coined the "Summer of Scam" by notables ranging from the New Yorker to Marie Claire magazine. Scroll the tiles below to see why.

shopping online securely

6 Tips for Safe Online Shopping

Hackers know that many people are buying on websites, and it’s likely why hacking spikes this time of year. Thankfully, these safe online shopping features from Firefox are easy to use all year round.

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grifter season of scam.png

The 2018 Summer of Scam

It's been high-season for con artists, scammers, and swindlers in the media. Meet the newly dubbed heroes and role models of the Summer of Scam by notable observers from the The New Yorker to Marie Claire

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two icons firefox and expressvpn partner

ExpressVPN and Firefox

A partnership between two best-in-class providers - Firefox and ExpressVPN unite to make the internet faster and safer. Using Firefox with ExpressVPN - it's the only way to roll!


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Why Are There So Many Robocalls?

Here’s what you can do about them.

Video by the Wall St. Journal. 

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black background white laptop

How to Lock Down Websites

Managing cookies and recommended security settings for Firefox.

November 2018 - Wired.

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OmniWAN OBR Appliance Imagesdadtds.jpg copy.jpg

The Uber-smart Gate of the Future - Available Today

Router Security is the coolest and most effective cybersecurity technology available today - for home, office, and small-business. Smart-technology in real-time means an IT security department in the cloud protects you, your network and all connected devices. It's plug-and-play, set-it-and-forget-it, and it automatically and seamlessly protects 24/7/365.

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