Yesterday morning I had the scare of my virtual life. I clicked in my email and was redirected to a page saying that my account had been deactivated due to a Terms of Service violation. It wasn't just my email either; my entire Google account was gone. No warning, no explanation, just gone. Oh. My. Goodness. There was a "contact us" link on the page where I filled in some little boxes and was told that they would only contact me if there was any "change in status". What the crap does that mean?? You are obliterating my online presence and you don't even have the decency to have some sort of auto reply set up? WTF!!!
Anyway, as you are reading the blog now, I obviously got my access back, but several hours I spent agonizing made me realize that I was not prepared for this sort of thing to happen. You get no guarantees in cyberspace. So, I wanted to pass on a few little pieces of advice. The first, if you are a Google account user (ie, your blog is hosted by blogger/blogspot) be sure that you have enable 2 step verification. It adds a layer of protection against hackers, and also allows you to recover your account more easily. Secondly, even if you are not a Google blogger, be sure that your blog is backed up somewhere. There are several online services that provide blog backup as well as a couple of programs that allow you to back your blog up to your computer's hard drive. Another interesting option is the online Wayback Machine, which is a web archive that collects websites. If you direct it to your blog it will collect a "snapshot" of your blog at that time which will be saved in the archive. My blog had been archived in May of 2010, so much of my content was still there.
I would not wish the morning I had yesterday on anyone. Please protect your online presence! You never know when you'll need it.
In sewing news, I know it's been a little quiet around here. I am working on my coat, but there is a ton of handwork, so it is slow going.