I have been firmly online since 1993, around the time that AOL and Apple Introduced eWorld. Back then it was all text, I crawled along with a 4800 kbps modem and I was just as excited about it all as I am today. I have always used the username silsurf, for reasons which have been previously outlined here at interactive blog of hank.
My password strongbox (1Password) currently tells me there are 1367 logins I have created over the last seventeen years (I never throw anything away, especially the digital stuff). Recently a good friend challenged silsurf’s ubiquity, he thinks he can find a website, forum, blog, library, etc that has not had the username silsurf already registered by me. I can tell you right now, it ain’t gonna happen.
Alas, this challenge had an unfortunate byproduct, I started getting a bit worried about all those “silsurf’s” floating around out there, and here are three reasons why:
- 1. In May of 2010 I opened a bank statement only to discover that my entire balance had been wire transferred to a bank in Jakarta. The ensuing circus of misinformation and lack of professionalism on the part of Chase bank is outlined in a three page letter I sent to the CEO’s CFO’s and COO’s of JP Morgan (I heard back all right). The identity theft had taken place entirely online and had only affected that one account, nothing else of mine had intruded upon. Needless to say I went on quite a large campaign of changing my password on any site that contained confidential information. This process itself became irksome as I had recently signed up ole’ silsurf with Mint.com, a financial aggregater owned and operated by Intuit (the makers of Quicken). Within days of signing up with Mint I was getting emails telling me that I had spent too much money at Whole Foods, (a truth that has been painfully obvious to me for years), but the point is, the amount of information that The Mint had gathered on me in such a short amount of time was stiffing. Much too much food for thought.
- 2. Then a few weeks later I tried selling two iPhone 3G’s after upgrading to iPhone 4’s, making my fifth leap of iPhoneology on eBay. Both sales involved hanky panky. On one, the sellers account had been hijacked just before closing. I had no idea about this until eBay sent me a shoebox full of emails telling me that the auction had been canceled, all fees and such have been refunded and my account had been in no way compromised. The second iPhone auction was purchased by someone in, you guessed it, Jakarta Indonesia. I never heard from them once the sale ended, nor would I have had anything to do with them if I had.
- 3. Then, lastly, I received this letter in the US mail. It is really really weird and I have absolutely no idea who it is from or what it means.
I think about you all the time-mostly when we were on the messy sofa-let’s bring it back – we need it.
I miss our long conversations and you running the place. My Life is not the same without you HUHHH! Even your barefoot feet – I’m flat footed. Let’s go jump off the pier head first.
I’m lost without you – you know I love you but don’t know how to tell you – you’re my Booba
Visitng hours 11-7
7 days week
I learned from someone they passed a law 2 years ago that they can’t take your SS or SSA from you while in Jail – you should get that back.
(then in the side bar it reads)
I need my Hanky Panky
Along the top is the name, address and phone number of a nursing home in downtown Los Angeles.
All these seemingly unrelated events happening to me in a relatively short period of time got me to a wonderin’, I really started to feel a bit paranoid about my online ubiquity and my continuous need to spread myself into the ether. I don’t know, it just kind of spooked me out that all these things happened in a relatively short period of time and it has made me re-evaluate my online presence. Re-evaluate enough to make long needed blog post yes, but has it stopped my ongoing registration efforts of silsurf, no, not all all and in case you were wondering my most recent registration was the the Kern Valley Canyon Connection Community Forums
Because, in the words of the historical philosopher Mr. Natural, “It don’t mean shit”