So, modern technology sucks.
Today, at approximately 12:15 EST, the Starbucks card computer system was compromised. How do I know? Because the thieves quickly and efficiently wiped out my bank account. This comes just a few months after the Target compromise, and it just makes me rethink the convenience of modern “convenience”. We sing praises of how awesome it is to purchase items with just a tap on our phone, or the swipe of a SpeedPass, but do we really sit and think about how often we’re sending our information out into the world-wide stratosphere? How many of us use the same passwords for every site, which can amount to 30-70, depending on how much of our business and life we conduct on the internet? I was very wary of plugging in my bank account info or credit/debit card info into forms on websites, but now, I am terrified. In just ten minutes, everything you have can disappear. It reminds me of that movie Hackers, when people were just becoming familiar with the internet, and wiz kids learned how to manipulate it fairly easily. And back then, we weren’t using e-commerce as if it were second nature. This makes me believe that it will only get worse, that cyber attacks will happen more regularly, and impact us more tragically. This is just my checking account I’m talking about today, but tomorrow, it can be my identity, my life. I know this may sound intensely dramatic, but it feels so much like a personal attack, this victimization, and it makes me feel so vulnerable.
So, my call to action for all of you? Double check your online presence and life. Change those simple passwords, or maybe even start purchasing some of those things in cash. I’m not the only one who’ll be affected, and I most certainly won’t be the last.