Tips for Safer Online Shopping

This post is the opinion of the author

This post reflects the author's opinion and does not necessarily represent the opinion of any entities with whom she is now or has been associated.

Shopping online is safer today than ever before, even though crooks continue to try to find ways to hack into systems, intercept your transactions or emails, and use “phishing” techniques to gather private information from you.

If you do shop online or over the phone, there are some things that you can do, and things to look at carefully, to make far safer.

Start with Your Computer Habits

Yup.  The weakest link could be your own computer and security habits (or lack thereof.)

All of the things discussed below aren’t much use if you don’t have good firewall and security software on your own computer.

Some of the most common brands are Norton™ by Symantec™ or McAfee™ Symantec, along with proprietary software, are used by many banks, financial institutions and payment processors including the largest banks in the United States.

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Sick of Geese and All Their Crap?

Geese, Lovely but Often Nasty BirdsHaving lived near the water, I know very well how foul geese can be.

Beautiful birds definitely.

They also can be pretty nasty tempered beasts, particularly when nesting or right after the baby geese hatch.

The only thing worse than being outside cooking on the grill and having them attack you to steal your food or pecking at you when you try to get to your car is, shall we say, their droppings.

All in all, geese add up to a lot of crap!

We just found two new products I wish our condo association had years ago. Both humanely encourage geese to make themselves at home, but somewhere else than your property.

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It’s Wind! It’s Solar! No, It’s Hybrid!

Boston Replacing Gas with Solar Solar

Photo from Boston Globe, 6/06/11

Lots of states, cities, companies and universities have been using solar lights for a few years now.

In fact, the City of Boston just announced a plan to retrofit 600 historic gas lamps in key neighborhoods with solar lights, saving the City roughly $140,000 a year in fuel bills while reducing carbon emissions. The $450,000 cost of the devices will pay for themselves in by eliminating gas costs in a little over three years.

There’s been a lot of news lately about other cities, private companies and universities using solar lights for roadway, park and parking lot lighting.

What hasn’t been talked about much are hybrid lights, those powered by solar panels and wind turbines. And they are a great solution, as few places are without wind or sun for any significant period of time. Continue reading

Don’t Commit Assault With Your Batteries!

Solar can be used for boats, piers and docksSolar Boatlights

This is the time of year when a lot of people pull out solar-powered features that have been stored away for the winter.

It also is the time of the year when outdoor soldont do itar lighting fixtures are found to not be working properly. Whenever a solar light or solar product doesn’t work, the usual fix is a new battery.
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