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Posts tagged ‘online’


New! iPhone Lockscreen Generator

When people ask me about the different ways they can protect their iPhone in case it gets lost or stolen, I usually point them in the direction of my article on Protecting and Recovering Your iPhone and iPad from Loss and Theft. I just updated that article to include a tip about creating a custom lockscreen image for your iPhone that may help someone return it to you in the event it gets lost.

A tip is all good and well, but creating such a customised image may be beyond the technical abilities of your average iPhone user, so I hacked together the brand new iPhone Lockscreen Generator!

This free online tool allows anyone to create a customised lockscreen (currently with one of four background images), in less than a minute. Just enter your contact details (first name, alternate contact number), and maybe a short note for whomever finds your iPhone (reward maybe?), click generate, then tap/click on the image to download it. You can do this on your computer, and email yourself the image, or do it directly on your iPhone.

Once downloaded to your iPhone, you can set the image as your lockscreen wallpaper by going into the Photos app, tapping your image, then tap the ‘send to’ icon in the bottom left-hand corner of the screen, select Use as wallpaper > Set > Set Lock Screen.

Don’t forget to share this with your friends! You can even use one of the share links below ;) If you have any feedback or tips, let me know.


How Not to Store Information Online

Note: This is a 2008 post I managed to recover from my archive of

There are many online services which aim to provide you with an anytime-anywhere way of accessing personal information. One such service that has gotten some attention recently is, recently criticised by Bruce Schneier (probably mainly because he’s the creator of a password storage utility called Password Safe, and is pissed off that they’re using the same name), is an online service which allows you to store your passwords in a convenient accessible-from-anywhere-in-the-world place. This is by no means the only service of its kind. Despite countless claims of client-side encryption, secure databases, or downright promises of “we don’t look at your passwords”, I have to say that the idea of entrusting any of my passwords to Bob in Delaware, or Dmitriy in Moscow, is more than disconcerting. You see, it’s not that we may not trust Bob or Dmitriy (and his friends from the Russian Business Network), but the simple fact of the matter is that you simply lose all control over the information you entrust to others. works very much in a similar way, but allowing you to store text in an encrypted ‘locker’. They claim security by performing AES encryption on the client-side using Javascript. Now although I’m sure the Javascript implementation of AES is lovely, again you’re trusting that one developer’s code is valid, but also that your browser isn’t being compromised at the same time.

A suitable alternative solution would be hard to find. In the end it would come down to you having complete faith in the system hosting your personal information, in my case I would want to have control over the system itself. When it comes to passwords, I wouldn’t store them anywhere, but if I had to I would use a reputable piece of software like Schneier’s Password Safe, or KeePassX. I would then be comfortable enough to maybe upload that into my webmail for recovery at a later date.

Moral of the story is, think very carefully before putting stuff online. This includes personal information that you post on Facebook and other sites, but equally important is your very private information and passwords. Now, if you want to store your shopping list in an encrypted online locker, by all means… go ahead ;)