Streaming "moochers" can be a problem

Every time I’m gobsmacked by nefarious activites on tech platforms I realize how naive I am as the world changes around me.

Moochers who free-ride on streaming services can be a problem. I never heard of this before.

It’s Time to Boot the Moochers Off Your Spotify, Netflix and Other Accounts

If strange activity suggests intruders are streaming with your login, use these settings

By Nicole Nguyen, The Wall Street Journal, Dec. 18, 2022

Many popular services including Netflix, Amazon and Apple show a list of devices connected to your account. Regularly vetting these logins is a good security practice…

Other than screwing up your recommendation algorithms, unauthorized users could change your account credentials to lock you out. On some services, they could even steal sensitive information, such as your credit-card number or home address. These freeloaders might also begin to incur costs on your monthly bill.

If you see activity you don’t recognize, opt to sign out everywhere and reset your password…[end quote]

The rest of the article describes specifics on how to find the shared devices on a number of services. Also advice on passwords, two-factor authentication, wiping devices before releasing them into the wild and phishing.




The companies being mooched on are just about as bad.

I bought a new tower. It arrived today. To transfer my data I went to Best Buy. They innocently? wanted to sell me a flash drive for $28. I decided against it. I have a flash drive. Got home and found I have a small flash drive.

I got into dealing with my new tower set up. Finding out it has a service that will do the data migration. I set it up thinking I asked the Geek Squad guy and the manager of the store how to do this and all they did was try to get $28 out of me. The flash drive solution being crap to get into doing.

@Leap1 -

If you’re just getting started with a new PC, then you may want to consider a USB external drive. They are pretty cheap now. Then, just store all of your data / docs on the external drive.

Buy 2. Use one for a backup for the first one and store it someplace safe.

Just something to consider.


When I’m buying a new PC or laptop, I copy off onto a thumb drive my anti-mal/spyware package. Then before I hook up the new buy onto my LAN, much less let it onto the Internet, I install that anti-mal/spyware and run a deep sweep. Only when I know the device is clean will I let it into any network.
Some years ago, I bought a new laptop from a major company (not Dell or Apple), and it was shipped directly to me from its Shanghai, PRC, factory. I thought that was pretty cool until I did the sweep and my anti-mal/spyware found a Trojan already installed.
Eric Hines


Woke up this morning to find my process of transferring 1 TB was almost complete through OneDrive. But I needed to subscribe for one month to OneDrive for $6.99 to complete the process.

A flash drive 512 GB costs $55.

Things are finalizing now.

There is a dozen ways to do this but only OneDrive does it for as little as $6.99.

I will be adding Defender and doing that, thanks. I bought a Lenovo.

Last year I bought a one terabyte LaCie Portable SSD for my new MacBook Pro to use as Time Machine backup. Fast, small and wonderful!

The Captain

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If the Neon gas problem persists then much later next year I will sell my old machine for more than I just bought this machine. I will remove the AMD 6600 tx graphics card and sell that as well again for more than I bought this machine.

Expect to start hearing they can not produce many chips because there is not enough neon.

There are a number of holes in Defender (I have used it for many years). It allows a hack generally called “Bing redirect”. What that does is allow an add-on (where? what? how?) to “redirect” any/all search requests to be done by Bing–even if Bing is NOT an approved search. I use Google as my search engine and I still get the “Bing redirect” AFTER doing multiple “clean sweeps” of my system by various online antivirus/antimalware/anti-whatever programs.

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a USB external drive
Buy 2. Use one for a backup for the first one and store it someplace safe.

Most people will get a USB flash disk if they hear this, not realising that the lifespan of data on cheap flash is measured in months-to-a couple of years, especially in warmer countries.

Also, most computer filesystems do not tell you if your data has been corrupted over time.

There’s a couple of cool technologies - ZFS, NAS4Free - that you can combine with any ancient PC or laptop, to give yourself a very reliable backup system if you have photos or documents you care about. Not only can ZFS detect errors, it can automatically correct them if you have more than 1 disk in the machine.


Getting back on topic here…

Make sure that you wipe the drive (or better still, and for more fun, rip it out and slam it with a sledgehammer) before you sell that machine in case you have any personal account information ANYWHERE on the hard drive. (It’s not always easy to know where it all might be).


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I haven’t received a straight answer about whether SSDs are appropriate for time machine backups or not (because they constantly write and re-write the incremental backup over time, every hour or so). I’m still using a spinny magnetic disk for my time machine.

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I plug it in once every few days. Time machine is free and my old backup software wasn’t working with the new laptop. I used to create bootable backups, the latest Macs don’t let you do that.

The Captain

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I just get a PC with an extra drive bay. Plug in an old drive, and Windows automatically backs up the data periodically.


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@steve203 I put an extra drive into my computer (“E” drive). How do I get Windows to automatically back data up to the “E” drive?

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I recently had one of my backup HHD’s go bad (I mirror all of my drives and this was a five year old paired drive (8TB, so re-synching it is taking a number of days over USB).

Anyhow, even though the dead drive is, well dead, it could be just the circuit board and, in theory, if someone was both technical enough and had the time/incentive to play with it, the data is still on the internal disks. My solution before throwing out hard disks is simple: I drill a quarter-inch (4mm) hole through the entire drive, piercing all the internal disks.

For those looking for a substitute for large USB’s an inexpensive 500GB SSD is only about $50 (Inland QN322 1TB SSD NVMe PCIe Gen 3.0x4 M.2 2280 3D NAND QLC Internal Solid State Drive - Micro Center) and an external case about $15 (

A year or two ago, I upgraded the SSD in one of my laptops and put the replaced drive in one of these enclosures and it worked well as a backup for my system drive when I go out of town.



Thanks that is really interesting. Can the old machine remain unplugged longer term?

The other consideration, I live in older wood construction. The woman on the first floor smokes and is in her late 80s. If she burns the place down the backup is worthless. If I can turn off the old machine for five years I’d leave it with family elsewhere, not a fire trap.

I can take the graphic card out and rewire the older built in the mobo card back together. Then sell the AMD Red Devil when no one can get a graphic card.

ah reading further my old system is C: 256 GB SSD but my data is D: 1 TB SATA.

The new system is C: 1 TB and D: 1TB.

Question are all these systems C: SSD? Then D: SATA?

In my old system if the C: is not powered up and refreshed would that strand the D: in the old system?

I do get I can remove the drive and plug it in elsewhere.

Can I safely store a tower unplugged in a summer time attic of 110 F? Thinking SATA only?

In Win 10: open “settings” menu. Select “update and security”. Select “backup” from menu on the left side of the screen. Turn on “automatically backup my files”, then click “more options” just below the automatic backup switch. Select frequency of automatic backup and how long to keep backup files. Select folders you want backed up. Scroll to the bottom of the page and click “see advanced settings”. another window opens. Click “select drive” from list on the left. Drives installed on the system will appear in the box. Select the drive you want to use.



Better yet…

Can I take the SATA hard drive with the data out of the tower and keep it in a pretty reasonably temperature controlled closet? How long will it last roughly?

I can then sell the tower with the SSD C: 256 GB. If the Neon shortage causes market havoc it is still gold.

Sure. Just power it up every 3-6 months and tell it to check everything (a single command). It will fix anything that needs fixed and tell you.