Journal Entries

Insta-Hacked

I like to think of myself as being rather geekily inclined.  Certainly I’m no stranger to hacks and people doing surreptitious things online.  Even so, I managed to become a victim of the latest (and not so greatest) hack that’s being perpetrated on Instagram in the past few months.

In the hack, someone asks for your assistance in ‘getting their account back’, or manages to dupe you into accepting a text message from them, that includes a link.  What you’re unaware of (and they usually tell you several times NOT to click on it) is that the link they’re sending you is a password reset of YOUR account, not theirs.  While you’re being distracted by their claiming (after you screenshot the link and copy it to them via Instagram) that nothing is yet happening, either they or someone they’re working with are behind the scenes, logging into your account and kicking you out.  Instagram almost wholly allows them to do this, because they’re utilizing a security process whereby under normal circumstances you can get back into your account if you somehow locked yourself out by processes that might be completely innocent.  Once they’ve gained access, they then change your password, change your email address and then to add insult to injury, enable the two-step verification, making it nearly impossible for you to legitimately regain access to your account.

So, this is what happened to me.  It was this past Saturday, I was getting ready for work and not paying attention.  Too, I was on my tablet, which doesn’t have email access, and the hackers lucked into a perfect situation.  Someone on my followers list (I’m not going to list the account here, as it wasn’t her but they perpetrating the hack) messaged and said innocently enough ‘Can you do me a favor?  I’ve been locked out of my main account and need assistance getting back in.  Instagram isn’t being helpful.’  Which as we will learn later, is all too often the case.  Instagram, being a program under the umbrella of Meta, doesn’t have what one would call a customer service system.  They do, but not to you and me.  IF I had millions of followers and this happened, they’d be falling all over themselves to assist.  Me, with my measly 300+ followers, no such luck.

Getting back to the situation.  I should have ignored the message, but it tugged on my heart strings just the right amount (classic damsel in distress issue) and I thought, what could be the harm?  [Well I found out just how much harm in the next couple of days.]  But, I digress.

So I bit at the apple and went to work, after (stupidly) telling the hacker I was going to be out of touch for 8 hours, since I was going to work.  So they had plenty of time to do what they were going to.  And they went ahead and did their dirty work.

By lunch time, when I went to check on my IG account, I was logged out.  I tried to log back in but my password didn’t work.  I didn’t have a lot of time to do anything, so I figured it was a glitch, and I’d fix it when I got home.  But that didn’t work either, and it was the weekend, which definitely worked in the favor of the evil doers.  After trying many different things, I went to my email program and discovered that my email address on the account had been changed.  So I couldn’t get a reset code to work, as I no longer had access in that manner.  Going to help service online was frustrating, because the hackers had instituted the two-step verification, thwarting my attempts at getting my account back.

Emailing the new owner of the account would be pointless, they weren’t interested in giving it back, so that avenue wasn’t possible.  I did have a Facebook account at one time connected to the IG account, but had long ago discontinued it so they were unable to hack that as well.  As I later learned, I might have been able to regain access if I DID still have the two connected, since the FB account had the 2-step verification active, hence there wasn’t a way for the assholes to gain access to that as well.

Back to the issue at hand.  Going through IG’s medieval, laughing-stock of a help service wasn’t doing me any good.  I went to YouTube and started watching videos of others’ experiences, but after understanding that this type of hack has been going on for many months, and there ARE ways of getting one’s account back, usually they include being able to get Instagram to do basic facial recongition through the use of a video you make and pictures on your account of yourself.  Generally people do have pictures of themselves, and that helps.

In my case I used the account for BDSM purposes mainly and having my face on the account wasn’t a big priority.  So in essence I screwed myself out of getting the account back there too.  I did try to report the account as being fraudulent, in that it was impersonating me, but IG shot that down.  The hacker is using the ‘story’ feature to spam the account (and my followers list) so that none of the ‘new’ posts stay on the account.  They’re covering all the angles, and being very surreptitious in making sure they stay in control of it.  Pissing me off in the process.

I did find a video on YT that said there’s a way of getting the account back, but it’s so involved I’d be hard pressed to be able to do anything about it.  Basically I’d have to turn my life upside down in order to be ready when (or if) Instagram would give me the opportunity to get the account re-registered to me.  I don’t have large chunks of my day to spend waiting for an email or message to show up.  I can’t carry my phone at work, so that negates time that might be THE TIME when IG is allowing me access again.  At this point I’m going to use my pet’s account, message my followers outside of the account itself (through a new account that I created) and ask them to either block the account or stop following as the account IS compromised and apparently will remain so.

It would be nice if a multi-billion dollar company like Meta/Facebook could treat ALL of their customers the same, but that’s never been the case, and it never will be.  They tout how wonderful it is to have free access to social media, but if there’s ever a problem, they tend to wash their hands of it, unless it’s affecting someone that’s contributing a great deal to their bottom line.  Everyone else can pretty much go pound sand.

I’m sorry this happened to me, and to the people that follow me on Instagram.  Just managed to lose a little more of my trust and innocence over the last week.  Whoever you are, hacker;  Fuck you.

 

How do you define ‘relationship’?

Honestly, I hadn’t thought much about this until this morning, when my pet informed me that she’d had a conversation with a friend at a munch, and this was the gist of it.  When the friend asked about her relationship with me, in that we’re not in the same household, it’s long-distance, and for at least four years we were apart, his conclusion was; that what we have isn’t (in his opinion) a relationship.

Furthermore, I don’t understand what his disconnect is on the issue, other than the fact that we’re not in the same house.  Two people that love one another, are trying to build something between them, and the fact that they’re not necessarily being physically intimate (to whatever degree) appears to be his undoing as far as logic goes.  To be clear, initially, when my pet informed me of his problem my mental response was akin to telling him to go piss up a rope.  He’s not the arbiter of our happiness now, nor will he ever be in the future.

After having thought about it in the ensuing day or so, it made me consider the issue from a different perspective.  Perhaps his issue is with the concept of distance, in that two people that are separated by it can’t have a typical, normal relationship that’s been tested in time over the centuries.  Though in my own mind, that would preclude people that were in conflicts like World War II, when soldiers in some cases were separated from their loved ones for many years, and yet when reunited, were able to continue with their relationship as if no time at all had passed.  Granted some got divorced because they had either grown apart, or the horrors of war had made them strange bedfellows, PTSD can be a nasty issue even in today’s conflicts.  But, I digress.

From a further conversation with my pet, she informed me the friend in question’s issue is more of his particular interpretation of BDSM, in that there’s a greater instance of sex and/or intercourse at the conclusion of play, which doesn’t exist in my own.  I’ve found over the years that many that have become introduced to the scene see it through the eyes (or screens) of pay sites, where the old adage rings true “sex sells“.  This is true if you’re wanting to get clicks or $$ from people observing or participating on your website, but if you break down the acronym BDSM, there’s NOTHING in the letters to denote that the payoff is sex.

The bottom line, we have a relationship.  And if her friend doesn’t like it, with all (or little) due respect; he can go fuck himself.

Incentive

We all need a little incentive on occasion when we’re doing things for ourselves, even for others.

In that vein, recently my pet has started to exercise in earnest, getting a membership at her local YMCA, and keeping track of her progress using a homemade workout sheet.  With that in mind, she needed a way to print off the sheets so she’s able to keep track, so, between the two of us, we got her a used printer that I had recently been gifted by a co-worker.  I cleaned it up, found the proper drivers from the manufacturer’s website and bought new ink so it would work properly, and even managed to find the right cable in my cobble of old tech to make sure it would connect to her laptop.

One evening while we were talking on the phone after work, she suggested that we might set up a system whereby she could send me her completed workout sheets, and after looking them over, confirm that she indeed was doing what she had set out to do; (complete her self-imposed quotas) I (in turn) could reward her with a trinket or something that she has listed on her Amazon wishlist.  There are other places online (and off) where she has wishlists and desires for low-cost items that would please her, and remind her that she’s indeed doing good work and should continue in the same vein.  She’s doing it not for prizes, but for the ultimate goal of being in better health.  The trinkets are more to help her along.

To wit, so far I’ve gotten her a pendant for her, and she absolutely loved it.  I have some other things in mind, which I will be sending over the course of the next couple of weeks.  I certainly don’t want them to become ‘old hat’ or expected, so I have to be careful in what I choose to send, that there’s meaning to them.

And I don’t want them interfering with birthday, anniversary or other holiday type presents.

 

And it begins!

My pet made it here yesterday afternoon around 4:30. We haven’t played yet, though I did have her wearing one of my shackle sets while we watched a movie last night. The important thing was getting her here and with a bit of luck and a good tailwind, she managed to navigate the highways and byways without too much angst.  As I understand it, the last 50 miles were the worst, something that I myself have experienced, since the final push requires a strong bladder.  Suffice it to say, you may be able to land a military plane on an Interstate, but if they don’t have sufficient rest stops, people are going to have to keep their legs crossed strongly.  Just saying!

Since she’d just finished a long drive, the second order of business was to get her fed.  Seeing as she’d been hankering for a particular recipe that I make on occasion (BBQ cups) I had laid on supplies to make a double batch, seeing as there was more than just the normal two of us (my wife and I).  My pet watched from the kitchen doorway for a few minutes (we have what can be best described as a ‘galley’ kitchen here in the old house) until I beckoned her in and got her busy browning the ground beef while I flattened out the store-bought biscuit dough, laying them in the muffin tins.  The recipe calls for a very basic, but quite ingenious barbeque sauce (ketchup, a bit of brown sugar, chili powder & vinegar) which doesn’t have to be cooked into the beef very long, but giving it a few minutes to warm up and meld with the beef can’t hurt.  Soon after I scooped the mixture into the dough cups, added a little shredded cheese, and slid the two tins into a piping hot oven for a 17 1/2 minute baking turn.  One could easily find them mouth-watering from the scent alone.  When it came time to serve, they were more than well-received.  As I mentioned, no play happened last night, we both were actually too tired to do anything in that regard.

The plan for today is to head to the basement and get the playspace cleaned up and squared away.  I have to dismantle my old weight bench, rearrange the things that have accumulated in the quasi-workshop, excise cobwebs (and their accompanying spiders), and run the Hoover down and around to clean up the floor.  We need to come up with a workable plan for padding that floor a bit (I purchased some interlocking mats a couple of years ago but never used them as I had no one visiting to make use of the space) and adding a place where we can do aftercare. My pet is bringing a used air mattress that will work, since it can be deflated when not in use so as not to take up space downstairs between visits.

I’m definitely looking forward to making the downstairs into a proper, useable play area, that we can both use and enjoy.  More to come, just wanted to make an update!  So much to do, so little time!

It’s a great deal, but…

I was up this morning at the ungodly hour of six because my alarm clock malfunctioned (or I forgot to turn it off yesterday morning) and it went off at 5:45 am.  Upon rising to use the facilities, I was accosted by my cat (Rochester) who kindly informed me that there were issues downstairs that needed to be attended to.  He also wanted attention, and by attention I mean he wanted to be petted and to attempt to attack my hand as I was doing so.  Morning rituals, yanno.

Going downstairs meant I was going to probably stay up for awhile, as I never seem to be able to do just go down, do something and go back to bed.  Just not my routine anymore.  So of course I went to check his food (it was fine, he just ate a hole in what he had, and when he can see the bottom, he figures the bowl is empty) and get a cup of tea.  Before having the tea, I checked my blood sugar, and it was in the right range to allow me to have my morning libation.  Set the Keurig to do it’s work, and then came in the addition to turn on my computer.

Sybian

I have my Fetlife account set to send me messages (by email) when there are new posts in certain forums, and one of them is the ‘Kinky Items for Sale’ forum.  Along with different posts about certain items for sale was one that caught my eye.  SYBIAN for sale; well, that was worth a look.  The seller stated that he had a unit for sale that he no longer used because he recently went through a breakup.  Apparently he lends it to his next door neighbors now, and supposedly they’re uninterested in purchasing it from him so he’s offering it to whoever might be interested on Fet.  In his description he goes on to say that he’s offering the base unit along with a trove of attachments, basically he bought just about every attachment that was available from the company and now the whole thing is sitting around gathering dust.

His price is staggeringly reasonable, when you consider he’s including probably 10-12 attachments that alone are probably worth $1200-1500 in addition to the main unit, which if bought new would be about $1k [USD].  He didn’t say how old the unit was, but even so his price makes it a steal.  Normally I wouldn’t haggle (at one time I purchased 20 floggers at $2,000 sight unseen only through the knowledge of who had made most of them) but in this case I had just made a very large purchase the day before in another realm of my life.  So putting out another large chunk of money gave me pause for something that might not be used a whole lot in the immediate future.

Since this was something that wouldn’t be used on me at all, I went to Messenger and posted my morning message to my pet, along with the information and asking her opinion.  As it was a tool that would be used on her exclusively, I needed to know if she thought it was a good purchase to make at this time.  I didn’t expect to get an immediate reply, after all she has the day off and by all rights should be sleeping at 7 am.  Even so, she was awake and messaged me right back and as is her strong suit, wasn’t selfish in the least.  She pointed out that it was a good deal, but I needed to be aware of my limitations, and didn’t need to be spending a lot of money right now on something that would be stored for the foreseeable future. (Good girl!)

So, I’m passing on it.  But still on the lookout for the right deals as well as other things to add to my collection.  Considering I just added 300+ feet of rope to my holdings a few days ago, I haven’t yet finished my splurging.